The First Art Newspaper on the Net Established in 1996 United States Friday, November 28, 2014


Solo exhibition of work by Jenny Holzer opens at Sprüth Magers in Berlin
Installation view. Photographer Jens Ziehe. Courtesy Sprüth Magers Berlin London.
BERLIN.- Sprüth Magers Berlin presents a solo exhibition of work by Jenny Holzer. Entitled Endgame, the exhibition includes a series of paintings marking the artist’s return to the medium after more than thirty years.

Jenny Holzer searches for ways to make narrative a part of visual objects, employing an innovative range of materials and presentations to confront emotions and experiences, politics and conflict. While looking for subject matter for electronics and projections, the artist located a number of redacted, declassified government documents including policy memos, autopsy reports, and statements by American administration officials, soldiers, detainees, and others, generated during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. These opaque documents became the foundation for Holzers silkscreened paintings in 2005; she began to create the fully hand-painted works on show in the gallery in 2010. Color, scale, and the mark of the hand are the only alterations that the artist makes; the graphic geometric shapes are the censor’s, and the surviving text is original. Holzer’s subtle alterations exacerbate how much one isn’t allowed to see.

The waterboard white (2012) is an arrangement of rectangles and lines. Two segments consist of legible text: "detainees have undergone" and "the waterboard." The minimal appearance of language renders the painting’s impact especially striking; this is in contrast with the pale segments of redacted text that comprise the rest of the work, highlighting what remains hidden. In other paintings, Holzer transforms the redaction into units of bright color. In Top Secret 7, 2011, a blackened paragraph is reproduced as a chromatic fade, consisting of bands of blended tones. Black dissolves into purple before diminishing into red and pink. Before the paragraph ends, pale blue turns white only to open into tangerine and orange. When a document is rendered as complex painting, one can conceive of the censored article as a contrivance - what is it working to hide?

Yet these paintings function as formalist works of art, improbably evoking a long history of avant-garde abstraction, in particular the Constructivist legacy and its notion that art could be directed towards social purposes. By referencing the historical avant garde with its faith in the power of art to change the world, Holzer’s paintings ask us to consider the relationship between painting and politics in the present. Holzer started in anger and mourning when torture was institutionalized. While rigorous and meditative painting cannot undo acts or by itself conjure optimism, it can suggest a means of working that is outside of cynicism. The paintings suggests that even misplaced or fugitive hopefulness is preferable to capitulation.

Also on view is Holzer’s LED artwork, MONUMENT, 2008. Upon entering the gallery the viewer is confronted by semi-circular elements arranged as a ceiling-high tower. Like moments in the paintings, the artwork displays texts from declassified U.S. government documents stemming from the wars in the Middle East. Language that reports recent history, and speaks of power, conviction, abuse, ideals, and belief, pulses in red, blue, pink, and white light. Recognized as Holzer’s signature medium, electronic signs have been part of the artist’s practice since the early eighties, and MONUMENT demonstrates Holzer’s increasing use of the medium for its sculptural capacities. Though the artist initially turned to the LED sign for its association with news and advertising, and as a mode of direct address, she now also uses the electronic sign for its ability to manipulate space and augment architecture.

The exhibition extends to the garden where two of the artist’s benches are on display. The benches, made from sandstone, are inscribed with words from Holzer’s Erlauf, 1995. Erlauf followed the War, 1992 and Lustmord, 1993-94 text series, in which Holzer focused on the atrocities of combat. Referring to the site where Russian and American officers met to declare peace in 1945, Erlauf memorializes lives lost and peace gained in World War II. Holzer began working with stone in 1986. Her idea was to find a home for her texts that was resistant to the vagaries of time and destruction, as lasting as the light of her electronic signs is transitory. The bench form was selected because it offered people a place to sit and converse with others. The utility of the object allows her to insinuate texts that aren’t immediately consistent with the domestic or park-like settings where they might be placed.

Jenny Holzer lives and works in New York. In 1990 she represented the United States at the Venice Biennale where she won the Leone d'Oro for Best Pavilion. Solo shows include ICA, London (1988), Dia Art Foundation, New York (1989), Guggenheim Museum, New York (1989), Walker Art Center, Minneapolis (1991), Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg (2000), Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin (2001, 2011), The Barbican Centre, London (2006), Whitney Museum, New York (2009), Foundation Beyeler, Basel (2009), DHC/ART Foundation for Contemporary Art, Montreal (2010), and The Baltic, Gateshead (2010). Group shows include Whitney Museum, New York (1983, 1988, 1989, 1996), Documenta 8, Kassel (1987), Centre Pompidou, Paris (1988, 1990, 1995, 2000, 2005), MoMA, New York (1988, 1992, 1996, 1997, 2005, 2008), Hayward Gallery, London (1992), Venice Biennale, Venice (2005), The Barbican Centre, London (2008) and Victoria and Albert Museum, London (2011).





Today's News

April 28, 2012

First major exhibition in Germany focusing on El Greco's paintings opens in Dusseldorf

Director of the E.G. Buehrle foundation says Cezanne damaged in heist can be restored

Christie's to offer a selection of works by an American watercolor master, Stephen Scott Young

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston celebrates Alex Katz’s 60-year career with exhibition

New, large-scale works by Cindy Sherman on view at Metro Pictures in New York

Solo exhibition of work by Jenny Holzer opens at Sprüth Magers in Berlin

El niño azul: Goya and Spanish painting in the Louvre presented as part of DNP Museum Lab project

One of last Louis Armstrong trumpet records now to be released to the public for the first time

Art Institute of Chicago acquires "Harlem U.S.A." photo series by Dawoud Bey

Space shuttle Enterprise arrives in New York City; crowds watch with joy and excitement

Romanian artist Victor Man's "The White Shadow of His Talent" opens at Blum & Poe

Frank Lloyd Gallery exhibits a series of paintings by Craig Kauffman made in 1989

Spring Show NYC to transform Park Avenue Armory into veritable museum of fine paintings

Michael Sailstorfer, winner of Vattenfall Contemporary 2012 Prize, exhibits at Berlinische Galerie

Josef Albers, Mapplethorpes to lead Grogan auction

Lynn Chadwick: The Complete Candelabras 1953-1996 on view at the Willer Gallery

Aimee Chang introduced as BAM/PFA's Director of Engagement

Stik's brilliantly produced new studio work on view at Imitate Modern

Valencian Institute for Modern Art presents an exhibition of works by José Saborit

Most Popular Last Seven Days



1.- Greece holds breath as skeleton found in Alexander the Great-era tomb at Amphipolis

2.- Spain mourns the death of art collector Cayetana Fitz-James Stuart, Duchess of Alba

3.- Meet the ancestors: Exhibition at Bordeaux gallery reveals faces of prehistoric humans

4.- Getty Foundation and partners launch free of charge online art collection catalogues

5.- Historic photos of dead Cuban revolutionary Che Guevara resurface in small Spanish town

6.- Exhibition showcases the first two 'Poesie' created by Titian following their restoration

7.- O'Keeffe painting sells for more than three times the previous world auction record for any female artist

8.- Crystal Bridges announces the departure of museum President Don Bacigalupi

9.- artnet Auctions offers a later example of Yayoi Kusama's important Infinity-Nets series

10.- 'Degenerate art' should go back to museums: German advisor Jutta Limbach



Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 

Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez - Marketing: Carla Gutiérrez
Special Contributor: Liz Gangemi - Special Advisor: Carlos Amador
Contributing Editor: Carolina Farias

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org theavemaria.org juncodelavega.org facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site