Florian Pumhösl was born in Vienna, Austria in 1971. He studied commercial art at the Higher Federal Education and Research Institute for Commercial Art from 1989 to 1991 and graphic arts at the University of Applied Art, both in Vienna, from 1989 to 1996. In 2002, Florian Pumhösl was awarded the Central Prize of the Cologne Art Society. Participations at the São Paulo Bienal, 2006 and in 2007 at the Documenta 12 in Kassel. He lives in Vienna.
Pumhösl develops his works from theoretical considerations relating to architecture, design, and the human being as a social entity. He is concerned with the influence exerted by industry and modern architecture on urban systems and the connection between architecture and power. From 1991 to 1993 he developed a series of joint projects with Dorit Margreiter and Mathias Poledna (among others) including "Material, Texte, Interviews" (1991), an effort to come to terms with the basic conditions of exhibitions of young art. He also created the installation "Impact" (1993) for the exhibition "KontextKunst" in Graz, Austria. At his first solo exhibition "Bürgerforum" (1993) in the Forum municipal park in Graz, Pumhösl focused on the relationship between direct democracy and architecture, using the example of the "Fensterrecht”"formulated by Friedensreich Hundertwasser, the rule that owners should be permitted to alter their windows in any fashion they like. At the exhibition entitled "on or off earth" at the Graz Art Society (1996), he worked for the first time with reconstructed objects and concrete time references. The frame of reference being formulated here was situated between a critique of modernism, design, and architecture and their projection into economically disadvantaged regions, which was continued in the project and attendant publication "Covering the Room" (1998) - an analysis of the aesthetic vocabulary of thematic exhibitions. In the installation "Humanist and Ecological Republic" at the Vienna Secession (2000), Pumhösl took the arsenal of forms of modernist architecture back to its model types of representational forms. The series that followed were documentary video installations, such as "Lac Mantasoa / Madagascar" (2000), and "Design for a Space with More than One Video Projection, Kampala, Uganda" (2000), dealing with modernization projects in African nations. A close link exists between Pumhösl’s exhibition activities and his journalistic project, "montage" (ongoing since 1997), conceived as a cooperative platform for artists and authors. (Monika Vykoukal)