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Darren Almond, Thomas Struth et al.

Wilderness (group show)
Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt
1 November 2018 - 3 February 2019

Darren Almond, Fullmoon@Cerro Chaltén, 2013 © Darren Almond
Darren Almond, Fullmoon@Cerro Chaltén, 2013 © Darren Almond

The wilderness returns to art! And it does so at a time when the blank spaces on the world map have largely disappeared and an “untouched natural state” virtually only exists in the form of areas designated as nature reserves. The search for the last open spaces, the expedition as an artistic medium, and post-human visions of a world devoid of people characterize the works of many contemporary artists alongside the renegotiation of the relationship between individual and beast. The SCHIRN is dedicating an extensive thematic exhibition to this recurring fascination and presents works of art from 1900 to the present. With important pieces by some 30 artists – inlcuding Tacita Dean, Mark Dion, Jean Dubuf­fet, Max Ernst, Asger Jorn, Geor­gia O’Keeffe, Gerhard Richter, Frank Stella, Thomas Struth, Henri Rous­seau und Carle­ton E. Watkins – it not only sheds light on the phenomenon of the wilderness in terms of iconography, but also shows it as a principle and motor of artistic creative work. Artists have repeatedly been drawn to that which is wild, untamed, uncultivated since the beginning of the aesthetic modern age. The “wilderness” has always also served as a projection surface for anything that was different and foreign, for the longing for a primordial life beyond the boundaries of civilization. In today’s “Anthropocene,” the utopia of a natural state remote from culture and human influence seems anachronistic. And yet the examination of traditional images and fictions of wilderness seems more alive than ever before.

Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt


Additional:

Thomas Struth

Thomas Struth (solo show)
Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao
4 October 2019 - 19 January 2020

Thomas Struth, Kyoko and Tomoharu Murakami, Tokyo 1991 © Thomas Struth
Thomas Struth, Kyoko and Tomoharu Murakami, Tokyo 1991 © Thomas Struth

A comprehensive journey through more than four decades of work by the acclaimed German photographer Thomas Struth (b. 1954), this exhibition will offer examples of the different stages of his work and the social concerns that have driven the evolution of his influential art. With more than 130 works, the exhibition, first seen at the Haus der Kunst in Munich, is the most extensive showing of his artistic career to date and contains early works that have never been exhibited before. Research materials from his archive will also help to present the ideas he has been working on for the past years

This meticulously composed presentation connects Struth’s initial ideas to his well-defined groups of works, such as Unconscious Places, Portraits, Museum Photographs, New Pictures From Paradise and Places of Worship. Thus establishing a dialogue with other works such as Berlin-Project, a video work conceived in 1998 together with media artist Klaus vom Bruch, or with the most recent photo series Nature & Politics as well as with the landscape and flower photographs created for the wards of Winterthur Hospital, later compiled in the monograph Dandelion Room (Löwenzahnzimmer). These relations between works highlight Struth’s ability to combine analysis with photographic creation in the multiple subjects and techniques that he applies to produce astonishing and powerful photographic images.

Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao


Thomas Struth

This Place (group show)
Jewish Museum, Berlin
7 June 2019 - 5 January 2020

Thomas Struth, Z-Pinch Plasma Lab, Weizmann Institute, Rehovot 2011, 2011 © Thomas Struth
Thomas Struth, Z-Pinch Plasma Lab, Weizmann Institute, Rehovot 2011, 2011 © Thomas Struth

This exhibition explores the complexity of Israel and the West Bank—their topography, inhabitants, and everyday life—from the perspective of twelve internationally acclaimed photographers.

Photographer and project initiator Frédéric Brenner says that his point of departure for the project was the desire to add new artistic visions to the images familiar from reporting on the region. He convinced renowned photographers to join him: Wendy Ewald, Martin Kollar, Josef Koudelka, Jungjin Lee, Gilles Peress, Fazal Sheikh, Stephen Shore, Rosalind Solomon, Thomas Struth, Jeff Wall, and Nick Waplington traveled to the region again and again over the course of several years.

Together, the more than 200 photographs create a complex visual portrait. Themes such as identity, family, the homeland, and landscape come into focus, while emphasis on the Middle East conflict varies. The widely differing works invite viewers to discuss the heterogeneousness of the region.

Jewish Museum, Berlin


Thomas Struth

Composition 19. Thomas Struth at the Hilti Art Foundation (solo and curated show)
Hilti Art Foundation, Vaduz
12 April - 6 October 2019

Thomas Struth, Composition 19. Thomas Struth at the Hilti Art Foundation, installation view, Hilti Art Foundation, Vaduz, 2019. Photo: Ines Agostinelli © Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein / Hilti Art Foundation
Thomas Struth, Composition 19. Thomas Struth at the Hilti Art Foundation, installation view, Hilti Art Foundation, Vaduz, 2019. Photo: Ines Agostinelli © Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein / Hilti Art Foundation

From 12 April until 6 October 2019, the Hilti Art Foundation is presenting works of the German artist Thomas Struth (* 1954) from its collection that focus on civilisation and nature, technology and culture.

In this self-curated show, Struth combines his works with paintings and sculptures from the Hilti Art Foundation collection, thus placing them for the first time in his international exhibiting career in an iconographic and aesthetic context with artworks from the 19th and 20th century.

Thomas Struth, who studied under Gerhard Richter and Bernd Becher at the Düsseldorf Art Academy from 1973 to 1980, has combined his photographs primarily into groups of works with such titles as Unbewusste Orte (Unconscious Places), Museum Photographs, Kultstätten (Cult Sites) or New Pictures from Paradise. On a global scale, he has trained his eye on streets, squares and buildings in various cities in different countries, on religious buildings and museums, including their visitors, or on the thicket of indigenous and non-European vegetation. Since around 2007 he has been increasingly interested in the complexity of industry, technology and research.

The photographs in the exhibition also concentrate on these aspects. Spread across all three floors of the building, the presentation of works is divided into the themes of People, Technology, Urbanity, Nature and Cult Spaces. The paintings and sculptures that Struth selected from the collection accompany the photographs as equals, revealing analogies in terms of both content and form. At the same time, they intensify the dialogue and the contrast between genres and epochs, for example when photographs of the Prado Museum in Madrid with baroque paintings and photographs of the Siemens Schaltwerk in Berlin with high-tech machinery are juxtaposed with the classical human figure of Wilhelm Lehmbruck. In the same sense, Struth also combines his photographs with works of Picasso, Klee, Léger, Mondrian, Giacometti, Wols, Klapheck or Richter.

Hilti Art Foundation, Vaduz


Thomas Struth

America Will Be!: Surveying the Contemporary Landscape (group show)
Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas
6 April - 6 October 2019

Thomas Struth, Dallas Parking Lot Dallas 2001, 2001 © Thomas Struth
Thomas Struth, Dallas Parking Lot Dallas 2001, 2001 © Thomas Struth

Drawing on works from the DMA’s permanent collection, this exhibition presents the ways in which contemporary artists engage with landscapes, broadly defined, exploring how our natural and built environments intersect with our representations of ourselves and our communities. The landscape has been both a traditional art historical genre and a means of mythologizing the origins of American history and culture as a colonial product, creating an image of unclaimed terrain that erased the people who already inhabited it.

“America will be!” is the rousing closing line of the 1935 poem “Let America Be America Again,” in which Langston Hughes argues for a vision of America—and for what it is to be American—that includes the multiplicity of experiences at both the margins and the center, regardless of race, socioeconomic status, or origin. This exhibition explores how contemporary “landscapes” might better reflect the full diversity of the peoples who inhabit North and South America.

Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas


Darren Almond

Fly me to the Moon. The Moon landing: 50 years on (group show)
Kunsthaus Zürich, Zurich
5 April - 30 June 2019

Darren Almond, Present Form: Ochd, 2013 © Darren Almond
Darren Almond, Present Form: Ochd, 2013 © Darren Almond

2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the first Moon landing – an event that, like no other, transformed our relationship with the world and our environment. The view of Earth from space gave rise to a new awareness of the fragility of our existence, and the Blue Planet as ‘Spaceship Earth’ has come to symbolize life itself. The space race began in 1957 when the Russians launched their Sputnik satellite into orbit, sparking fear and anxiety in Western nations that led to the establishment of NASA in 1958. The USSR upped the ante in 1961, sending Yuri Gagarin, the first astronaut, into space and returning him safely to Earth. This prompted J. F. Kennedy’s ambitious announcement of a project to land a man on the Moon before the decade was out.

Our exhibition is a journey through the history of artists’ engagement with the Moon, from the Romantic era to the present day. Divided into thematic sections, it focuses on topics such as lunar topography, moonlit night and the Moon’s shadow, ailments associated with the Moon, zero gravity and the Moon as mass media phenomenon.

Kunsthaus Zürich, Zurich


Thomas Struth

Tudors to Windsors: British Royal Portraits (group show)
Bendigo Art Gallery, Bendigo
16 March - 14 July 2019

Thomas Struth, Queen Elizabeth II and The Duke of Edinburgh, Windsor Castle 2011, 2011 © Thomas Struth
Thomas Struth, Queen Elizabeth II and The Duke of Edinburgh, Windsor Castle 2011, 2011 © Thomas Struth

Tudors to Windsors traces the history of the British monarchy through the outstanding collection of the National Portrait Gallery, London.  This exhibition highlights major events in British (and world) history from the sixteenth century to the present, examining the ways in which royal portraits were impacted by both the personalities of individual monarchs and wider historical change. Presenting some of the most significant royal portraits, the exhibition will explore five royal dynasties: the Tudors, the Stuarts, the Georgians, the Victorians and the Windsors shedding light on key figures and important historical moments. This exhibition also offers insight into the development of British art including works by the most important artists to have worked in Britain, from Sir Peter Lely and Sir Godfrey Kneller to Cecil Beaton and Annie Leibovitz.

Bendigo Art Gallery, Bendigo


Thomas Struth

Titian and the Renaissance in Venice (group show)
Städel Museum, Frankfurt
13 February – 26 May 2019

Thomas Struth, Galleria dell’Accademia 1, Venedig 1992, 1992 © Thomas Struth
Thomas Struth, Galleria dell’Accademia 1, Venedig 1992, 1992 © Thomas Struth

In the spring of 2019, the Städel Museum will devote itself to one of the most momentous chapters in the history of European art: Venetian Renaissance painting. At the beginning of the sixteenth century, the artists of the lagoon city – first and foremost the young Titian (ca. 1488/90–1576) – developed an independent strain of the Renaissance relying on purely painterly means and the impact of light and colour. This new approach caused a sensation in Venice, and its exponents were soon spreading the innovations outside the city republic as well. In the 1540s, yet another highly talented young generation – now embodied by Jacopo Tintoretto and Paolo Veronese – came on the scene to vie for commissions in Venice.

In its various sections the exhibition introduces selected characteristic aspects of Venetian painting from the sixteenth century – for example the atmospherically charged landscape depictions that heralded landscape painting as a genre in its own right, the ideal likenesses of beautiful women (“Belle Donne”), or the importance of colour for the art of the Venetians. With more than a hundred masterworks from international collections, the show is the first in Germany to present a first-rate, thematically structured panorama of Venetian Renaissance painting.

The large-scale exhibition features more than twenty examples by Titian alone – the figure who held the key position in the Venetian art scene all his life – and thus the most extensive selection of his works ever before on display in Germany. It also presents works by Giovanni Bellini (ca. 1435–1516), Jacopo Palma il Vecchio (1479/80–1528), Sebastiano del Piombo (ca. 1485–1547), Lorenzo Lotto (ca. 1480–1556/57), Jacopo Tintoretto (ca. 1518/19–1594) and Paolo Veronese (1528–1588). The exhibition offers comprehensive insights into the artistic and thematic spectrum of the Renaissance in Venice and elucidates why so many widely differing artists of later centuries looked back to works of this period again and again for orientation.

Städel Museum, Frankfurt