alfonso artiaco
alfonso artiaco
founded in 1986

Richard Artschwager

richard artschwager
05.04.2013 - 18.05.2013

Alfonso Artiaco gallery is delighted to announce the opening of the exhibition by Richard Artschwager, Piazzetta Nilo 7, Naples, on Friday the 5th of April 2013, at 7 pm.

On the occasion of its third exhibition in the premises of Piazzetta Nilo 7, the Alfonso Artiaco Gallery wants to pay tribute to Richard Artschwager (26.12.1923, Washington D.C., USA  – 9.2.2013, Albany, N.Y., USA), artist with whom the gallery had the honour to work with for two personal shows in 1992 and 1996 and for the group shows Corso Terracciano 56 in 2002 and Dedica in 2006 at PAN in Naples.

The image of recent art history that we are all very familiar with seems to present itself in a relatively ordered and manageable way. We are aware of artists’ names and stylistic definitions; we have some idea as to how influences passed back and forth, how the great impulses of Pop Art, Minimal Art, Conceptual Art and New Sculpture divided the world among themselves and how they continue to wield their influence to this day. But then there is Richard Artschwager, an artist who had his admirers in every generation since the 1960s, on the one hand and with whom critics and art historians have had some difficulty, on the other. He does not fit in any of the usual categories. Unconventional and unpredictable: such is the work of Richard Artschwager. Over the decades of his career, Artschwager produced an oeuvre that could not be more varied in form. Frequently, it is hard even to say whether a given work is sculpture or painting, their implications are multiple. He made haunting grayscale paintings, often of domestic scenes and architecture, and superbly crafted sculptures in eccentric mediums like plywood, Celotex (a nubby fibreboard, familiar from cheap ceiling tiles), rubberized horsehair, wood and, especially, Formica, which he called “the great ugly material” that often resembled functional objects like pianos, chairs and tables, betraying the artist’s work as a furniture maker in the 1950s. [Richard Artschwager, Up and Across, exhibition catalogue, Neues Museum in Nürnberg, 2001]

Just a week before his death, a major retrospective of his work—titled “Richard Artschwager!”—ended its run at the Whitney Museum. The show was his second career-spanning show at the museum, (the first being in 1988) and will travel to the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles later this year. He had major shows at Paris’s Centre Pompidou in 1989, Vienna’s MAK in 2002 and the Deutsche Guggenheim in 2003, and made multiple appearances in numerous important international exhibitions, like the Venice Biennale and Documenta, in Kassel, Germany, which he was featured in an astounding five times.

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