Ladies and Gentlemen, Artists, Organizers and Participants,
Your invitation to this year’s FERONIA-FESTIVAL 2019 is truly a great honor. Only a previous commitment could possibly have kept me from this magnificent gathering and event. I will be with you in spirit, and send in my absence a thought-provoking text from the great Director of the German Theater in Berlin Benno Besson, about “theater with masks” on the occasion his production of “Ödipus Tyrann” 1967, which I hope will accompany you during the Festival.
I find it fascinating, that with the rise of the bourgeoisie in Europe, the theater stopped using masks. Only the traditional masks of the comedia dell arte remained, which, if you compare them with other masks, are psychological character masks. When actors were allowed to appear on stage without masks, this reinforced the growing sentiment of the public, that all people are equal before God and the law! This desire for equality was strong, and the removal of masks was well received. Equality was being modeled on stage – every person is a private being, the King and all other people are organic, similarly formed creatures.
All were now at liberty to see themselves as a small cosmos within the great universe. This was an extraordinary historical step. Yet for us to think in absolute terms, that the bare human face is the only way to portray human dignity, would be incorrect.
I am not intentionally trying to pick a fight with the theater without masks, but the art of acting with masks does in fact have other functions, and shows other aspects of humanity, which the long march of bourgeois theater has left by the wayside.
I hope that my exhibit with the title “Time in Masks Goes” and the photograph from Electra (Dieter Mann the Teacher of Orestes) will inspire all participants and their artistic creations to new heights.
Wolfgang Utzt – A Biography
- Wolfgang Utzt born in Senftenberg 1941
- 1960 – 1963 educated as Makeup Artist and Designer
- 1973 Diploma in Makeup Design, Academy of Fine Arts
- 1973 – 2003 Head of Makeup Design at the German Theater in Berlin
Work as Educator
- Dresden Academy of Fine Arts
- Actors’ Academy “Ernst Barlach” Berlin
- College of Film and Television “Konrad Wolf” Potsdam
- Academy of Art Weißensee Berlin
Exhibitions (a selection)
- 1987 Theater Masks - Theater Museum, Helsinki Theater
- 1989 Theater Masks - Exhibition Center at the Television Tower
- 1993 Theater Masks – American Institute of Theater Technology Wichita, Kansas
- 1996 Theater Masks – Tokyo, Japan
- 1999 Mask, Faces of Culture – St. Louis Art Museum St. Louis, Missouri
- 2000 Mask, Faces of Culture – Field Museum Chicago, Illinois
- 2000 Mask, Faces of Culture – Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas
- 2010 Time in Masks Goes – Neuhardenberg Castle Foundation
- 2011 Time in Masks Goes – Museum of Art and Trade Hamburg
- 2012 Time in Masks Goes – German Theater Museum Munich
- 2010 Time in Masks Goes – Exhibition Catalog
- 2016 The Armadillo Came at Four O’clock at Night – Children’s Book