Paul Chan “Selected Works” at Schaulager, Basel / MOUSSE CONTEMPORARY ART MAGAZINE

Paul Chan “Selected Works” at Schaulager, Basel

by mousse

June 30~2014

For six months, Schaulager is presenting the art of Paul Chan, born in Hong Kong and based in New York. It is the most extensive exhibition ever of work by this artist, just 40 years old, who has already created a wide-ranging oeuvre that reveals him to be one of the most inventive and multifaceted practitioners in contemporary art. His studies of current political and social issues, as well as the great and timeless concerns of history, literature, and philosophy, are incorporated into his art with lighthearted verve.

Paul Chan is prototypical of his generation, exploiting the potential of the World Wide Web and its information overkill to excess, redesigning it and establishing links with goal-oriented, unbridled enthusiasm. He is as versed in making videos and installations, in drawing and painting, as he is in writing and lecturing. A closer look at this seemingly disjointed, rampant, and bewildering oeuvre proves it to be consistent, unswerving, and profound. It is our pleasure to invite you to enter into Chan’s exciting universe and discover his exceptional art.

Schaulager’s invitation to mount an exhibition has been an opportunity for Chan to review what he has done so far and to move ahead with his work. In the architectural setting devised specifically for the exhibition, he has playfully arranged existing and new works to create an ingenious display of exceptional impact. You, as viewers, will no doubt be instantly struck by the immediate effect of the works in space. It is your turn to decide how much you wish to invest in the countless issues and questions addressed by the artist. If you embark on this journey of discovery, you will experience and understand things differently, things initially perceived as beautiful and yet disturbing, deeply moving yet alien or even shocking.

A “challenging” exhibition? Yes, and one full of unexpected twists and turns that will inspire you to take your time and come back for another look. That is why the admission ticket is valid for three visits. The accompanying program of events, including tours and lectures, offers visitors the opportunity to enhance their appreciation of Paul Chan’s oeuvre even more. On September 12/13 a symposium will take place in the auditorium. It is open to the public and will give further insights into the exhibition and Paul Chan’s work.

Once again on Thursdays, Schaulager will stay open until 10 p.m. for the “Schaulager Night”, during which your ticket includes an attractive program of tours, art films in the “Artist’s Choice” program, talks, and poetry sessions.


at Schaulager, Basel

until 19 October 2014


Above – Magnolia, 2012

Happiness (Finally) After 35,000 Years of Civilization (after Henry Darger and Charles Fourier), 2000-2003

Untitled (after St. Caravaggio), 2003-2006

1st Light, 2005

3rd Light, 2006

Score for 7th Light, 2007

Leftover (for 6th Light), 2007

My birds… trash… the future, 2004

Untitled (Studies for My birds… trash… the future), 2004

Holiday, 2012

Volumes, 2012

Tablet 3, 2014

The body of Oh young Augustine (truetype font), 2009

Dumb luck!, 2009

Choros of appetite 4, 2009

The argument: symposiums, 2012

The argument: Athens, 2012 – 2013

Master Argument, 2013

The argument: haircut (of the year), 2012 – 2013

Hair Restoronto, 2013

Sock N Tease, 2013

Sade for Sade’s sake, 2009


Paul Chan, “Selected Works” installation views at Schaulager, Basel, 2014

© Paul Chan. Courtesy: the artist; Greene Naftali, New York; Emanuel Hoffmann Foundation; Living Collection; the Öffentliche Kunstsammlung Basel; Collection Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Miriam and Erwin Kelen Acquisition Fund for Drawings and the T.B. Walker Acquisition Fund; The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Fractional and promised gift of David Teiger. Photo: Tom Bisig; Bisig & Bayer; Paul Chan; Martha Fleming-Ives; Jason Mandella; Jean Vong