Johann Korec

Austria, 1937 – 2008

Johann Korec was born in Vienna and spent his childhood in various Lower Austrian special needs centers. At the age of 21 he was admitted to the Gugging Psychiatric Clinic, where he first started drawing. In 1981 he was invited to then Centre for Art-Psychoterapy (rebaptized as the “House of Artists” in 1986) by Leo Navratil and soon developed his unique style. Johann was among the artists who rendered the building unforgettable with colorful wall decorations and graffiti. In the 1960s he began collecting images of romantic couples from newspapers and magazines and tracing those onto discarded paper. Once the relocation occurred, Johann stopped tracing images and began drawing his own. He used India ink, quill and ballpoint pen to make the outline and to write a legend for each image, which usually occupied half of the support. Korec then used watercolors to color his drawings. Aside from depicting couples, he drew circus animals that alluded to his dream of becoming an animal tamer. Over time, the content of his work became more sexualized. The work of Johann Korec was featured in the Fascicules de l’Art Brut and is part of the Arnulf Rainer Collection, the Charlotte Zander Museum, abcd Art Brut Collection and De Stadshof Collection.

© Courtesy christian berst art brut