NEW YORK, NY.- The FLAG Art Foundation
presents two exhibitions: an exhibition of new works by Josephine Meckseper on FLAGs 9th floor space, and Sinbad, an exhibition of 98 paintings by Gerhard Richter, on the 10th floor. The exhibitions runs through May 26, 2011.
Josephine Meckseper employs window displays, vitrines, installations, photographs, films and magazines to draw a direct correlation to the way consumer culture defines subjectivity and sublimates the key instruments of individual political agency.
Meckseper presents new works focusing on retail environments and modernist concepts. Industrial reflective slatwalls, a staple of bargain store design, mirror the car dealerships of 11th Avenue. Chromed wheels, car headlights and logos flash across the videos, sculptures and cellophane-wrapped paintings, like detritus after a crash. The traditional allure of the automobile is undercut with its demise, giving the entire exhibition a destabilizing undercurrent of fear. Meckseper utilizes the staples of American Gothic (fluorescents, broken mirrors, black birds) accompanied by the incessant booming of the acid-house soundtracks of her films to further the feeling of imminent danger that penetrates the space.
Strikingly, the work draws parallels with modernism. Meckseper invokes a number of the classic forms of color, line and shape of high modernism and abstraction. The strong rectilinear lines of the vitrines, all steel and glass, recall Mies Van Der Rohe. Like the auto industry, modernism too represented a twentieth-century idealism of essentialism and clarity in both art and life. In her invocation of its forms, Meckseper suggests that the hard-edged lines of essentialism in art are undergoing the same reconsideration as the American auto industry. The exhibition portrays a new reality where identity is no longer dialectic, and where past stalwarts of power and hegemony crumble and recombine in the fragmenting landscape of contemporary life.
Josephine Meckseper's work has been exhibited in numerous solo exhibitions, including at the Migros Museum, Zürich (2009), Nottingham Contemporary (2008), the Museum of Modern Art, New York (2008) and the Kunstmuseum Stuttgart (2007). Her work has consistently been featured in international biennials including the Whitney Biennial (2006 and 2010), and will be on view at the forthcoming Sharjah Biennial in the United Arab Emirates in March 2011.
The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalogue with contributions by John Cassidy, James Frey, Stephen Roach and an interview with Francesco Bonami.
Gerhard Richter: Sinbad
Gerhard Richter is one of the worlds foremost artists. His work, developed over several decades, alternates between figurative and abstract approaches and intentionally defies stylistic categorization.
Sinbad is the first series of works by Richter to allude to The Book of One Thousand and One Nights (Arabian Nights), and was followed in 2010 by Aladdin. These small works -- presented behind glass and arranged into forty-nine diptych pairs -- explore concepts of chance and abstraction. Each piece, considered autonomous though it plays off its partner, contains drips, smears, and swaths of color.
The Sinbad series was first displayed in Cologne, at the Museum Ludwig (October 12, 2008-February 1, 2009). A limited edition catalogue, published by Walther König, Köln Germany to commemorate that exhibition is being released in February 2011.
Gerhard Richter was born in Dresden, Germany and currently lives and works in Cologne. He studied art at the Kunstakademie Dresden and the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. He first began exhibiting in Düsseldorf in 1963. Retrospectives of the artists work have been on view at Düsseldorf's Kunsthalle, Tate Gallery, London, Gallery of Ontario and at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, and the Museum of Modern Art, New York. He has participated in several international art shows, including the Venice Biennale (1972, 1980, 1984, 1997 and 2007), as well as Documenta V (1972), VII (1982), VIII (1987), IX (1992), and X (1997). He has been the recipient of numerous prizes, including the Praemium Imperiale, Tokyo, (1997); Wolf Prize, Jerusalem (1994-1995); the Oskar Kokoschka Prize, Vienna (1985); and Arnold Bode Prize, Kassel, Germany (1981). The artist is represented by the Marian Goodman Gallery in New York.