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Albert Oehlen, Thomas Struth et al.

Oracle (group show)
The Broad, Los Angeles
29 April 2017 - 3 September 2017

Albert Oehlen, FN23, 1990 © Albert Oehlen. Courtesy of The Broad
Albert Oehlen, FN23, 1990 © Albert Oehlen. Courtesy of The Broad

In an increasingly small world that spans politics, culture and commerce, The Broad will present an interpretation of the elusive globalizing forces at work in contemporary society in Oracle, a free collection installation this spring that will fill the museum’s first-floor galleries with more than 30 works from the Broad collection. Opening April 29, 2017, the four-month installation will feature works by over 20 artists including El Anatsui, Mark Bradford, Peter Halley, William Kentridge, Julie Mehretu, Shirin Neshat, Albert Oehlen, Jeff Wall and Terry Winters, plus recent acquisitions by Ericka Beckman, Sterling Ruby, Oscar Murillo, Tauba Auerbach and Andreas Gursky. Four artworks in the installation will make their debut in Los Angeles, including one work completed by the artist this year.

From everyday experiences to protest movements as monumental as the Arab Spring uprisings across the Middle East, to themes that probe systems of social control or examine global commerce, artworks in Oracle tackle the effects of organizational frameworks on global events and private individuals. Some works in the installation symbolize marketplace machinations, both official and unofficial, while others are meditations on games, surveillance, vast data sets, mathematical and biological patterns, and even the logic of art itself. Just under the surface of the works in Oracle is an air of anxiety, as if individuals’ freedoms within these manmade phenomena are illusory or beyond reach.

 “‘Globalization’ is a term now in the forefront in politics and the media, but for decades, contemporary artists have represented it in their work, responding to and decoding its many forms. Oracle looks at how artists have anticipated the forces that have real consequences in our daily lives yet can be obscured from direct view.” - Joanne Heyler, founding director of The Broad

The Broad, Los Angeles


Additional:

Albert Oehlen

As Far as the Eye Can See - New Insight into the Würth Collection (group show)
Kunsthalle Würth, Schwäbisch Hall
23 April 2018 - 17 March 2019

The Würth Collection, already rich in diversity and specific features, has nevertheless been enlarged by a wealth of exciting international acquisitions over the past ten years. An opulent selection of almost 200 works dating from the 1960s onwards are now being put on show for the public, many of them for the first time.
The main accesssions have been in the fields of painting and sculpture. The often powerful
formats by Karel Appel, Daniel Buren, Anthony Caro, Tony Cragg, Felix Droese, Antony Gormley, Peter Halley, Johannes Itten, Alex Katz, Martin Kippenberger, Per Kirkeby, Imi Knoebel, Maria Lassnig, Robert Longo, Brian O’Doherty, Albert Oehlen, Sigmar Polke, Arnulf Rainer, Gerhard Richter, Antonio Saura, Sean Scully, Monika Sosnowska, Antoni Tàpies and many others reflect in many ways the complexity as well as the openness of positions in art over the past 60 years.
Whereas the art predominant in the western world in the post-war years was mainly dedicated to art forms that, freed from all figuration, tradition and representational constraints, relied solely on the inspired gesture, now artists emerged who were suspicious of precisely this supposedly ingenious artistic inspiration. While some declared painting to be dead, others took very different approaches towards a “re-vision” of painting and sculpture, which included both provocation and irony.
This did not ultimately involve some kind of empathetic return to the painterly or figurative, but rather a re-negotiation of traditionally conveyed notions of the image and the reproduction. What is more, it is a process which has still not been completed to this very day.
The exhibition is subdivided into several sections that provide exciting insight into a variety of themes ranging from Colour Field to Nature Transformed to Body Communication,
not omitting Staged Conflict Fields or The Grand Gesture. You may well be surprised!

Würth Collection


Thomas Struth

Nature Unleashed: The Image of Catastrophe since 1600 (group show)
Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg
29 June - 14 October 2018

Thomas Struth, Louvre 4, Paris 1989, 1989 © Thomas Struth
Thomas Struth, Louvre 4, Paris 1989, 1989 © Thomas Struth

In a large-scale exhibition spanning several epochs, the Hamburger Kunsthalle traces based on important works how artists working in different media picture natural catastrophes while also shedding light on humanity’s failure to come to terms with nature due, among other things, of our faith in technology. Nature Unleashed: The Image of Catastrophe since 1600 features approximately 120 exhibits, including paintings, drawings, prints, sculptures, photographs, films and videos. As viewers make their way past blazing fires, earthquakes, floods, volcanic eruptions and sinking ships, they will take note of pictorial constants in the expression of such disasters but will also become aware of the differences in depiction from one era to the next. The show’s special appeal lies in the close juxtaposition of artworks created centuries apart. The trajectory of exhibited works spans an arc from the years around 1600 to the present day. Contemporary works serve to anchor the theme in the here and now and underline its topicality.

Catastrophes are omnipresent. The media constantly reports on natural disasters, acts of war, political upheavals and other crisis scenarios, characterising them all with the common term “catastrophe”. Catastrophes don’t just happen, they are made. It is only in our perception, in our active engagement with such drastic events that they take on distinctive contours and reveal their typical face. Every age makes its own catastrophes and redefines the criteria by which certain events are labelled as such. These fundamental observations form the basis for the exhibition project.

Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg


Thomas Struth

Image Building: How Photography Transforms Architecture (group show)
Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill
18 March - 17 June 2018

Image Building: How Photography Transforms Architecture is a comprehensive survey that explores the dynamic relationship between architecture, photography, and the viewer. Seen through the lens of historical and architectural photographers from the 1930s to the present, Image Building offers a nuanced perspective on how photographs affect our understanding of the built environment and our social and personal identities. The exhibition features 57 images that explore the social, psychological, and conceptual implications of architecture through the subjective interpretation of those who captured it.

Organized by guest curator Therese Lichtenstein, Ph. D, Image Building brings together works by 19 renowned, under-recognized, and emerging artists ranging from early modern to contemporary architectural photographers. In addition to photographs, Image Building includes ephemera such as magazines and books that illustrate how the meaning of photography shifts when presented in the context of high art or mass culture. 

Organized thematically into Cityscapes, Domestic Spaces, and Public Places, the exhibition examines the relationship between contemporary and historical approaches to photographing buildings in urban, suburban, and rural environments, looking at influences, similarities and differences. By juxtaposing these photographs, Image Building creates a dialogue between the past and present, revealing the ways photography shapes and frames the perception of architecture, and how that perception is transformed over time.

Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill


Albert Oehlen

Cows by the Water (solo show)
Palazzo Grassi, Venice
8 April 2018 - 6 January 2019

Albert Oehlen, Untitled, 2016. Courtesy of the artist and Pinault Collection
Albert Oehlen, Untitled, 2016. Courtesy of the artist and Pinault Collection

From Sunday 8 April 2018, Palazzo Grassi presents Cows by the water, a personal exhibition dedicated to German artist Albert Oehlen (1954, Krefeld, Germany) and curated by Caroline Bourgeois.

The exhibition lays out a path dedicated to Albert Oehlen’s production through a selection of approximately 85 works, including some lesser-known ones, created between the 1980's and today. The works brought together come from the Pinault Collection as well as from other major private collections and international museums.

Cows by the water path is not chronological but rather suggests a syncopated rhythm between various genres and periods, thereby underlining the central role played by music in the artist’s practice. Music emerges as a real metaphor of his work method, where contamination and rhythm, improvisation and repetition, density and harmony of sounds become pictorial gestures.

Albert Oehlen (1954, Krefeld, Germany) reveals himself to be a major figure of contemporary painting thanks to his artistic research in constant evolution, dedicated to experiments and to overcoming formal limits rather than to the subject represented.

The artist’s work has already be presented in exhibitions around the world, including at the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Havana in 2017, the Cleveland Museum of Art in 2016, the New Museum in New York in 2015, the Kunstmuseum in Bonn in 2012 and the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris in 2009. 'Cows by the water' in Venice is his largest monographic one to date.

Palazzo Grassi, Venice