Lea Draeger unleashes the institutional figure of the pope and transforms the papal body, including gestures, facial expressions and insignia of patriarchal power, into possible and impossible situations. At times malignant, mischievous, sexy, engaging in physical exercise or in the role of Don Quixote: Draeger’s drawings are humorous appeals against the church’s sovereignty of interpretation and put the unquestioned identification with the Catholic paternalistic ideology of infallibility up for discussion.
© Lea Draeger, Courtesy Ebensperger Rhomberg Berlin/Salzburg, Photo: © Egbert Trogemann, VG Bild-Kunst Bonn
In the tradition of the artist book, Lea Draeger creates a 36-page work: over several generations she tells her family history and describes its Catholic patriarchal structures between witch-hunts, papal worship and male domestic violence. The complex and painful histories of the protagonists are aesthetically linked with the iconography of representations of saints. At the same time, Draeger’s icons are also iconoclastic disruptions of the connection of violence between religion, patriarchy and the bourgeois ideal of family.
Lea Draeger Die Heiliginnen, Courtesy Ebensperger Rhomberg Berlin/Salzburg, 2019, Photo: © Egbert Trogemann, VG Bild-Kunst Bonn
Lea Draeger, born 1980, is based in Berlin. Since the 2015 season she's been a member of the Gorki ensemble. In addition to her theatre work, she works as a visual artist. Her works were shown Van Abbemuseum Eindhoven (2018), Sammlung Friedrichshof (2018) and Galerie Patrick Ebensperger Rhomberg (2019).