Pierre Huyghe is a producer of spectacular and memorable enigmas, with works that function more like mirages than as objects. Abyssal Plain (2015–ongoing), his contribution to the 2015 Istanbul Biennial, curated by Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, was installed on the seabed of the Marmara Sea, some 20 metres below the surface of the water and close to...
In the early decades of its existence, New York's Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), founded in 1929, transformed from a philanthropic project modestly housed in a few rooms of the Heckscher Building on the corner of Fifth Avenue and 57th Street, to an alleged operating node in the United States' cultural struggle during the cold war, and one of the...
Hans Hartung and Art Informel at Mazzoleni London (1 October 2019-18 January 2020) presents key works by the French-German painter while highlighting his connection with artists active in Paris during the 50s and 60s. In this video, writer and historian Alan Montgomery discusses Hartung's practice and its legacy.Born in Leipzig in 1904, Hans...
It is a great honour that Kewenig can announce the unique exhibition A Journey, in which - for the first time - these three international artists with strong reputations are united together. In close collaboration with ElAnatsui and Anish Kapoor, whom the gallery is showing for the first time, the exhibition is a composition initself, and also a journey into the future. The show will take place on the occasion of Berlin Art Week andinclude a large-scale installation by Jannis Kounellis, surrounded by four new sculptures by Anish Kapoor, andthree 'fabrics' by El Anatsui.
Ghanaian El Anatsui (*1944) has until now been an artist mainly shown in the context of so called 'African Art', although his work contains far more universal aspects. The shimmering metallic woven fabrics made of bottletops, interrogate the history of colonialism and draw connections between consumption, waste, and theenvironment. But at the core the works are distinguished by their own unique formal language, diverging fromtraditional craftsmanship, and are instead pure painterly sculptures. As an architect of evanescent illusions andvisual experiences, his works correspond deeply with the Arte Povera legacy that has marked the gallery sinceits beginnings, but also blur the lines between traditional concepts of painting and sculpture. Anatsui says: "Theamazing thing about working with these metallic 'fabrics' is that the poverty of the materials used in no wayprecludes the telling of rich and wonderful stories".
The Greek born Jannis Kounellis (1936 – 2017), one of the principle pillars of the gallery and a founding father of Arte Povera, has long acquired the status of a steadfast figure within the movement. Michael Kewenig andKounellis travelled the world, working together and shaping the gallery's history, but both died unexpectedlythis year. Their spirit and aesthetic vision however remain perceptible in the gallery space. Combining art andhistory with the immediacy and tangibility of the present, was one of Kounellis' great talents. The large-scaleinstallation, consisting of hand sewn shells on canvas on a wooden cross, can be seen as a 'nature more'metaphor to urge us to enjoy life. This single work is placed centrally to bolster all three artists together in theexhibition, in direct visual contact with the installations by Anish Kapoor and El Anatsui.
Indian born Anish Kapoor (*1954) considers himself 'a painter who does not paint' and thus highlights his position between the classical artistic genres. Being one of the most influential artists of his generation, he haschosen to show in Berlin his most recent works, viscous, amorphous blood-red silicone figures. In contrast tothe materiality of these sculptures stands a new version of his well-known 'Mirrors' that unusually does not givethe viewer a reflection back onto themselves, but blocks their view and distorts the space around him leaving asensation of disorientation. The artist himself describes his spellbinding mirrors as "Perceptually...veryconfusing. It's as if one's looking at space... kind of tumbling into itself."
Not only are the geographic distances between these artists vast, also conceptually this exhibition traces the long journey to where the gallery is now. It is a journey coming and learning from the past, creating experiencesfor today and leading us to an uncertain future full of ideas, however always remaining in dialogue with theartists and their work.
El Anatsui, born in Anyako, Ghana in 1944, lives and works in Nsukka, Nigeria. His works have been part of major solo exhibitions, including the travelling exhibitions Gravity and Grace: Monumental Works by El Anatsui,organised by the Akron Art Museum, Akron, OH, USA, 2012-2015; El Anatsui: When I Last Wrote To You AboutAfrica, organised by the Museum for African Art, New York, NY, USA, 2010-2012; and A Fateful Journey, theNational Museum of Ethnology, Osaka, Japan, 2010-2011. He participated in the Venice Biennale in 1990,2007, and 2015; the Paris Triennial in 2012, and the Marrakech Biennale 6 in 2016. A large-scale publicinstallation was commissioned and presented on the façade of the Royal Academy of Arts in London in 2013.He was awarded the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement, the Venice Biennale's highest honour in 2015. Heholds honorary doctorates at Harvard University, Cambridge MA, USA and The University of Cape Town(UCT), South Africa.
Anish Kapoor, born in Mumbai, India in 1954, lives and works in London, UK. Major solo exhibitions include Museo d'Arte Contemporanea Roma (MACRO), Rome, Italy, 2016; Museo Universitario ArteContemporáneo (MUAC), Mexico City, Mexico, 2016; Château de Versailles, France, 2015; Rijksmuseum,Amsterdam, Netherlands, 2015; The Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center, Moscow, Russia, 2015;Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain, 2010; the Martin-Gropius-Bau in Berlin, Germany, 2013 and the RoyalAcademy of Arts, London, UK, 2009. He represented Britain at the 44th Venice Biennale in 1990 (furtherparticipations in 1982, 1993 and 2011), was part of documenta IX in Kassel in 1992, won the Turner Prize in 1991and has an honorary fellowships from the University of Wolverhampton, UK (1999), the Royal Institute ofBritish Architecture, London, UK (2001) and an honorary doctorate from the University of Oxford, UK (2014).
Jannis Kounellis, born in Piraeus, Greece in 1936, lived and worked in Rome, Italy since 1956, and passed away on February 16 of this year, aged 80. Recent institutional exhibitions include: the Museo d'Arte ContemporaneaRoma (MACRO), Rome, Italy, 2016; the inaugural exhibition of MECA Museo-Espacio, Mexico, 2016; theMusée de la Monnaie, Paris, France, 2016; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Herning, Denmark, 2009; theNeue Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Germany, 2007; the MADRE Museo d'Arte Contemporanea Donnaregina,Naples, Italy, 2006; the Galeria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna, Rome, Italy, 2002, and the Museo NacionalCentro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, Spain, 1997. Kounellis took part at the Venice Biennale several times, aswell as documenta 5 in 1972, documenta 7 in 1982 and documenta 14 in 2017.
All three artists are represented in major institutional collections around the world.
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