Diamonds & Pearls
12 Dec 2009 - 06 Feb 2010
12 December 2009 – 6 February 2010
Georg Baselitz, Motoko Dobashi, Dan Flavin, Richard Hamilton, Damien Hirst,
Sebastian Hammwöhner, Robert Mangold, Dieter Roth, Fred Sandback
We are delighted to present a new group show with selected works on paper. The show manifests the different possibilites of expressions in printed and drawn works.
In the first room of the gallery are a series of four stage proofs and two sheets of the editioned print Mittelgrosse Insel (1973) (Medium-sized Island) by Dieter Roth on display. The island depicted is Iceland, a place where Roth lived since 1957 again and again and which was very close to his heart. The subject matter island has a prominent place in Roth‘s oeuvre; Iceland was his favourite place of retreat from the art world until his premature death in 1998. The four stage proofs show in an exemplary way how the edition was conceived, how Roth changed things around and how the editioned print was developed. For this reason the prints were included in Roth‘s big retrospective exhibition Roth-Zeit in the Schaulager in Basel in 2003. Next to this group three small works on paper by Roth are shown, recording the whole gamut of etching techniques and Roth‘s experimental use of them: The Isländischen Landschaften III and IV (1973) (Icelandic Landscapes III and IV) are based on Polaroid images translated by Roth into rich etchings; the Kleine Insel (1973) (Small Island) shows again Iceland in a smaller scale and restricted to the planar values of the aquatint technique.
The screenprint The Solomon R Guggenheim (1965) is one of the most important prints by Richard Hamilton. The museum building was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright from 1943 to 1946 and built from 1956 to 1959, inaugurated therefore exactly fifty years ago. Hamilton asked his English friend Lawrence Alloway, appointed 1961 curator at the Guggenheim, to send him photographic and other material related to the building. Taking this material as his starting point, Hamilton imitated the working procedure of the famous architect. The depiction possess – by accentuating the figure ground issue – the character of a logo and it is therefore not a surprise, that the picture of Hamilton has become the logo of the museum.
In the middle room of the gallery opposites confront each other: the tone of the works on one of the walls is minimal, on the opposed wall an expressionistic sound is predominant. The „minimal“ side opens with the screenprint Orange Rectangles (1991) by Robert Mangold. Aside are delicate linocuts by Fred Sandback from the 1970s. These works are supplemented by the new pastel drawings on black paper by Sebastian Hammwöhner. The dot-etching Methamphetamine (2004) by Damien Hirst completes the wall. This large print is a master piece of the etching technique. The work includes 162 dots in different colours.They have been applied through the aquatint process and have its characteristic velvet glow. The dot pictures by Hirst have become one of his trade marks. They always denominate chemical compounds or pharmaceuticals. On the „expressionistic“ opposite wall is the woodcut series Remix (2006) by Georg Baselitz shown. After the Millennium the German Malerfürst Baselitz embarked on a series of works in which he revisited earlier subject matter and started to question and reinterpretating it. Baselitz main interest is the investigation of his emotional and artistic attitude towards his own work. The Remix series convinces through
its abruptness and its simultaneous lightness of the depiction of the motives. The monumental linocut Aurora (2006) by Baselitz, the first work from the six-part series Im Wald und auf der Heide (In the Woods and on the Heath), shines from the short wall. The smooth blue undercolour of the linocut lends the image the impression of a fine morning light, contrasting strongly with the dark black colour of the linocut ground.
In the gangway to the back room hangs the small etching Untitled (For Cornered Circular Fluorescent Light) (1975) by Dan Flavin and in the back room itself are shown the two amazing prints by Richard Hamilton Soft Blue and Soft Pink Landscape (1979/80).
They are variations of advertisements for blue and pink Andrex toilet paper and proof Hamilton‘s characterisation as a master of deception. The new mysterious acryl drawing Tropfen (Drops) by Motoko Dobashi and the red glowing pastel drawing HÖH(The Dream Moves) (2009) by Sebastian Hammwöhner complement the works by Hamilton and complete the exhibition.