RINEKE DIJKSTRA, ALBERT OEHLEN et al.
Beautés (group show)
FRAC Auvergne, Clermont-Ferrand
24 June – 5 November 2023
Works by Rineke Dijkstra and Albert Oehlen are included in the exhibition Beautés at FRAC Auvergne. Inspired by Marcel Proust’s declaration that ‘true beauty is so particular, so new, that we do not recognise it for beauty’, the exhibition brings together gems from the museum’s collection acquired between 1985 and 2023, and invites viewers to consider beauty as a complex and often contradictory experience which spans from excitement and wonder to melancholy and lust.
Albert Oehlen (solo show)
Friedrichs Foundation, Weidingen
27 August – 17 December 2023
When Albert Oehlen set out as a painter in the late 1970s, it was a time out of joint. Given German history, terrorism, 'No Future,' and Nineteen-Eighty-Four as well as the permanent threat of all-out nuclear war, painting could not pretend that the world was safe and sound. As the world shattered, so did painting. As all symbols, signs, and means were damaged and devoid of meaning, he unmasked painting in all its dubiousness. How is one to tell authentic gesture from blunt reproduction, genuine emotion from a disillusioned readymade copy? Oehlen accepts the shattering and transforms it into the basis of his painting. He invents an overtly fragmented image, which is as disoriented as the reality, in which it partakes. Traces, stimuli, and after-images of reality flash stroboscopically across his canvases. It is through this attitude that he has achieved an exceptional degree of painterly liberty, With each new image, he updates and renews the possibilities and impossibilities of painting, thereby granting an appropriate form to a diffuse reality.
For the first time, Albert Oehlen has created an expansive all-over installation, spanning the entirety of the Friedrichs Foundation’s exhibition hall, into which 12 paintings have been playfully integrated.
Ömega Man, 2023 (outdoor sculpture)
Stiftung zur Förderung Zeitgenössischer Kunst in Weidingen / Rodenhof
On view from 15 July 2023
Albert Oehlen’s monumental sculpture Ömega Man, 2023, is now on view to the public in Weidingen, where it emerges from the vast landscape of the Südeifel. Its simplified form and slightly raised steel bars, recessed into their concrete casting, evoke the lightness of a drawing. Here, the persistent importance of the line in Oehlen’s work becomes evident, appearing simultaneously curved and controlled. In this work, the artist uses elements which are both abstract and figurative to critically examine the history and conventions of contemporary art, all the while continuing to acknowledge the importance of classical models. Massive yet fragile in its isolation, Oehlen's Ömega Man appears like a monument from the future. Omega, the last letter of the Greek alphabet, is here written with an umlaut, thereby referring to the artist’s own name.
Stiftung zur Förderung Zeitgenössischer Kunst in Weidingen
I See You (solo show)
Maison Européenne de la Photographie, Paris
7 June – 1 October 2023
The MEP, Paris, will host I See You, a major exhibition of the photographic and video works of the internationally renowned Dutch artist Rineke Dijkstra. Taking over one complete floor, Dijkstra will install four of her most important video installations, all presented for the first time in a Parisian institution.
The video works selected for the exhibition deal exclusively with the ways in which younger people look at and present themselves as portrait subjects in the process of establishing their identities, whether as school students, performers, or consumers of visual culture. In many ways, by holding up the camera to face her subjects, Dijkstra challenges us to rethink the ways in which we look at and attach meaning to images of others and thereby how we understand our own roles in contemporary society.
Maison Européenne de la Photographie
RINEKE DIJKSTRA et al.
yours truly (group show)
Museum Morsbroich, Leverkusen
13 May – 29 October 2023
Rineke Dijkstra’s Odessa, Ukraine, August 7, 1993, 1993 will be on view in the exhibition yours truly, at the Museum Morsbroich. Bringing together works of figurative and abstract art, spanning painting, video and photography, the exhibition considers how artists may seek dialogue with the viewer in order to prompt existential questions.
Night Watching (installation)
Timken Museum of Art, San Diego
1 March – 4 June 2023
Rineke Dijkstra’s monumental, three-channel video installation Night Watching is now on view at the Timken Museum of Art, San Diego. First debuted in 2019 following a commission by the Rijksmuseum, Night Watching features 14 diverse audiences contemplating Rembrandt van Rijn’s most iconic work, The Night Watch, 1642). On six consecutive evenings, Dijkstra filmed groups standing or sitting directly in front of the painting, recording their conversations, which range from close visual descriptions to speculations about the circumstances surrounding the creation of this masterpiece. The Timken's presentation of Night Watching represents the first time that this complex project has been seen on the West Coast and inaugurates a new curatorial series at the Timken entitled Reconsidering Rembrandt.
RINEKE DIJKSTRA et al.
The Rhythm of the Night
Frans Hals Museum, Haarlem
11 November 2022 – 14 January 2023
Rineke Dijkstra's work will be included in The Rhythm of the Night, an exhibition of video art. An ode to the night, the exhibition celebrates the dizzying experience of dance events, the possibility of nightclubs to act as havens for freedom and self-expression, and the artistic potential of the video medium itself. The show features Dijkstra's The Krazy House, 2009, which portrays young clubbers on a dancefloor in Liverpool, England. ‘The result is a beguiling, fragile and yet familiar reflection of the social and cultural codes with which young people shape their identity’, curator Manique Hendricks explains.
ALBERT OEHLEN et al.
Space for Imaginative Actions (group show)
8 May 2022 – 31 January 2024
Works by Albert Oehlen are now represented at the group exhibition Space for Imaginative Actions at Kunstmuseum Bonn. The exhibition celebrated the museum’s thirtieth anniversary and brings together monographic and thematic works from more than forty artists.
The Painter, a film by Albert Oehlen, Oliver Hirschbiegel and Ben Becker
Under the direction of Oliver Hirschbiegel, actor Ben Becker on screen impersonates the contemporary painter Albert Oehlen and re-creates a painting that Oehlen himself and in parallel is creating step by step in the background, with the actor improvising the process in front of the camera. The finished on-screen painting is an original “Oehlen” on which the artist himself never laid hands. The off screen blueprint painting was destroyed after principal shooting had finished.
Originally planned to be a performative statement the projects developed into a fully fledged feature film of 92 minutes, crossing formal boundaries and questioning the meaning of the creative process and the struggle for authenticity on various levels.
The Painter follows the artist / actor as he is struggling and suffering along this process with us watching in joyful despair and what might happen next until the white canvas has turned into a finished painting.
The outcome is a one-man rollercoaster that appears to be a documentary but in fact is a staged and guided improvisation with the “real” process happening behind the camera. The Painter is a constant flow of the artist’s journey with elements of farce and comedy topped with emotional moments of truth...in front of and behind the camera and leaving it up to us to decide what is real and/or authentic.
Watch the trailer here.