Rosemarie Trockel “A Cosmos” at the New Musem, New York
Lisa Phillips, Toby Devan Lewis Director, New Museum, said, “Rosemarie Trockel is one of the leading artists of her generation and most respected German artists of the past forty years. It is an extraordinary honor for the New Museum to present “A Cosmos,” which will be the most comprehensive survey of her work in the US to date, and the most significant museum presentation in New York since a show of her video work at Dia Art Foundation more than a decade ago. With this new exhibition, we will be able to offer the general public a rare view into the mind of one of our most important artists, with a presentation that is fresh in its totality.”
Since the early 1970s, Rosemarie Trockel has produced an impressive body of work that includes drawing, collage, installation, “knit paintings,” ceramics, videos, furniture, clothing, and books. She brings together a range of associations and references from art history, philosophy, theology, and the natural sciences. For “A Cosmos,” Trockel places her work in the company of others whom she regards as kindred spirits. Installations created for the New Museum illuminate the intellectual and formal connections between her practice and a range of historical figures including self-taught artists James Castle and Morton Bartlett, and the botanist/ mathematician José Celestino Mutis. Objects whose impetus was primarily aesthetic will be juxtaposed with pieces that more conventionally belong to the realm of science. Trockel’s roughhewn glazed ceramics from the past several years will be displayed along with Leopold and Rudolph Blaschka’s delicate glass models of sea creatures created in the nineteenth century. A selection of new work by Trockel can be examined in conjunction with watercolors by the seventeenth-century artist Maria Sybilla Merian, whose impeccably precise yet beautiful renderings of flora and fauna proved invaluable to scientific study.
Trockel’s well-known disregard for the conventional hierarchies in the visual arts, together with her longstanding appreciation of media and materials once categorized as crafts or vernacular art forms, is demonstrated throughout the exhibition. She has adopted a fluid and radical approach to gender, combining activities typically considered feminine in terms of production with aggressive mechanical and industrial forms. This is emphasized through the inclusion of Judith Scott’s obsessively wrapped yarn sculptures alongside Ruth Francken’s plastic and metal assemblages from the 1970s. In addition, Trockel’s celebrated “knit paintings” will be integrated into the exhibition, along with new works made of ceramic.
at the New Museum, New York
until 20 January 2013
Rosemarie Trockel “A Cosmos”, installation views at the New Musem, New York, 2012. Photos: Benoit Pailley