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Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum fur Gegenwart presents Wall Works

Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum fur Gegenwart – Berlin presents Wall Works an exhibition on view through August 31, 2014.

Sarah Morris, 1972 [Rings], 2006/2013. Household gloss paint, 14.11 x 4.83 metres. Edition Schellmann. © Nationalgalerie im Hamburger Bahnhof, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin / Thomas Bruns. © Sarah Morris.
Sarah Morris, 1972 [Rings], 2006/2013. Household gloss paint, 14.11 x 4.83 metres. Edition Schellmann. © Nationalgalerie im Hamburger Bahnhof, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin / Thomas Bruns. © Sarah Morris.
The exhibition Wall Works examines wide-ranging artistic interpretations that have redefined the wall as a visual support and space-defining element since the 1960s. The starting point was an extensive and diverse group of wall paintings and wall objects from the Edition Schellmann, recently acquired for the museum collection by the Verein der Freunde der Nationalgalerie, which is now being presented in an initial selection of works. The acquisition of the entire group was largely made possible due to generous cooperation on the part of the Edition Schellmann, for whom the works were conceived and created as architecturally related “wall works” from 1992 to 2009. These works, which are created in very diverse techniques, are based on site-specific designs by artists working within the context of varied artistic positions and tendencies—including Minimal and Conceptual Art, Arte Povera, Video Art, or related to postmodern practices. Wall works—by artists such as Daniel Buren, Günther Förg, Sarah Morris, Matt Mullican and Rosemarie Trockel—are presented in the exhibition in dialogue with other works from the Nationalgalerie’s collection (the Friedrich Christian Flick Collection at Hamburger Bahnhof, the Marx Collection and the Marzona Collection), as well as with selected loans and new wall works created especially for the exhibition by Friederike Feldmann, Katharina Grosse and Nasan Tur.

Against the historical background of mural paintings and wall designs dating back over millennia, artists in the early 20th century devised concepts for wall paintings, picture walls and wall reliefs, which went beyond the frame of an individual image in order to take an entire wall or interior space into view. The boundaries of painting and sculpture have been further advanced through their connection to this notion since the 1960s, while also questioning the conditions under which art is produced, how it presents itself, and how it is reviewed and traded. From within the context of Minimal and Conceptual Art, artists examined the “White Cube” in a museum or gallery space, and the wall, as part of the exhibition display, was taken up as a central theme. In differing ways, walls serve as temporary surfaces for staging graphic, painterly, cinematic and language-based works, and they can, in fact, be interpreted as sculpture. Walls are sometimes also physically attacked or the masonry beneath the plaster is exposed. In essence, the wall, pictorial space and architectural space combine to create an entity in every work, each in its own way.

Participating artists:
Ross Bleckner, Monica Bonvicini, Daniel Buren, Hanne Darboven, Raoul De Keyser, Friederike Feldmann, Ceal Floyer, Günther Förg, Katharina Grosse, Peter Halley, Mona Hatoum, Richard Jackson, Sergej Jensen, Donald Judd, Imi Knoebel, Joseph Kosuth, Jannis Kounellis, Sherrie Levine, Sol LeWitt, Gordon Matta-Clark, John McCracken, Sarah Morris, Matt Mullican, Bruce Nauman, Blinky Palermo, Giulio Paolini, Antonio Paucar, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Robin Rhode, Reiner Ruthenbeck, Rosemarie Trockel, Nasan Tur, Lawrence Weiner, Franz West

A publication documenting the exhibition will be available in spring 2014.

Curator: Gabriele Knapstein, Nationalgalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
Curatorial assistance/press contact: Uta Caspary, [email protected]

Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart – Berlin
Invalidenstrasse 50-51
10557 Berlin
Hours: Tuesday–Friday 10am–6pm,
Thursday 10am–8pm, Saturday–Sunday 11am–6pm