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13 Jan 2012

Neues Museum in Nuremberg: The Irrational in Art

Sigmar Polke
Die Schere
© The Estate of Sigmar Polke, VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2011
Foto: Wolfgang Morell

The Irrational in Art
Neues Museum – State Museum of Art and Design Nuremberg


Opening: 17th Nov 2011 18th Nov 2011 – 26th Feb 2012 Opening hours: Tues-Sun, 10 am – 6 pm; Thurs, 10 am – 8 pm; closed on Monday

Dr. Melitta Kliege
0049 911 2402020
0049 911 2402029

Neues Museum – State Museum of Art and Design Nuremberg
90402 Nuremberg

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You repeatedly come across them, those themes of the irrational and uncanny scenery, and that includes very contemporary, very young art, too. 'Tischrücken' in Sigmar Polke's case, 'Grosse Geister' in Thomas Schütte's oeuvre, or fortunetelling by Christian Jankowski. Artists concern themselves with the phenomena of materializations, levitations or psychic mediums and telekinesis. So from what do themes such as ghostlike apparitions, witches, enchantment and magic phenomena in art derive? This exhibition highlights how such representations arise and what structures underlie a seemingly supernatural and supersensory repertoire of images. Alongside contemporary positions there are seven glances back at the history of art, as far back as Johann Heinrich Füssli or the Japanese representations of ghosts in Ukiyo-e, the tradition of the figure of master sorcerer Faust or Gabriel von Max and the spirit cult of the turn of the 20th century. In a dialog between contemporary art and works from other centuries, the exhibition offers and overview of 130 works by 40 artists and focuses firmly on the traditions and intellectual context of such irrational subject matter.

Artists & chapters:
Joseph Beuys, Anna & Bernhard Blume, Ulla von Brandenburg, Lili Fischer, Tobias Gerber, Christian Jankowski, Sigmar Polke, Arnulf Rainer, Thomas Schütte, Nina von Seckendorff, Antoni Tàpies, Miwa Yanagi. Johann Heinrich Füssli und Shakespeares Welt der Geister; Goethe und der Faust-Stoff; Gabriel von Max und der Spiritismus; Japanische Gespenstergeschichten im Ukiyo-e; Zaubervogel und Seegespenst – Alfred Kubin; Prinzhorn Sammlung; Paul Klee: Geister-luft-Zug

Curator: Melitta Kliege

Accompanying programme:

Prof. W. v. Lucadou
Thursday, 26th January, 7 pm
Dr. P. Maisak
Thursday, 23rd February, 7 pm
Guided tour by the curator:
Thursday, 16th February, 6 pm