Richard Artschwager forged a unique path in art from the early 1950s through the early twenty-first century, making the visual comprehension of space and the everyday objects that occupy it strangely unfamiliar. His work has been variously described as Pop art, because of its derivation from utilitarian objects and incorporation of commercial and industrial materials; as Minimal art, because of its geometric forms and solid presence; and as conceptual art, because of its cool and cerebral detachment. But none of these classifications adequately define the aims of an artist who specialized in categorical confusion and worked to reveal the levels of deception involved in pictorial illusionism. In his work, an anonymous sheet of walnut-pattern Formica is both itself and a depiction of a wooden plane; a table or chair is furniture, sculpture, and image all at once; and a painting or sculpture can be a “multi-picture” or “three-dimensional still life.” Artschwager foregrounded the structures of perception, striving to conflate the world of images—which can be apprehended but not physically grasped—and the world of objects, the same space that we ourselves occupy. His last body of work marked a departure from his previous series, in that the images he composed from sources in popular culture communicated overt, if deadpan, allusions to contemporary political issues.
Artschwager was born in 1923 in Washington, DC, and died in 2013 in Albany, New York. After receiving a BA in 1948 from Cornell University, New York, he studied under Amédée Ozenfant, one of the pioneers of abstraction. In the early 1950s Artschwager became involved in cabinetmaking, producing simple pieces of furniture. After a ruinous workshop fire at the end of the decade, he began making sculpture using leftover industrial materials, then expanded into painting, drawing, site-specific installation, and photo-based work. Artschwager’s first exhibition took place at the Art Directions Gallery, New York, in 1959, and was followed by the first of many solo exhibitions with Leo Castelli in 1965. Solo exhibitions include Up and Across, Neues Museum, Nuremberg, Germany (2001, traveled to Serpentine Gallery, London); Museum für angewandte Kunst (MAK), Vienna (2002); Kunstmuseum Winterthur, Switzerland (2003, traveled to Kaiser Wilhelm Museum, Krefeld, Germany, and Staatliche Graphische Sammlung, Munich); Painting Then and Now, Museum of Contemporary Art, Miami (2003); Up and Down/Back and Forth, Deutsche Guggenheim Berlin (2003); Hair, Contemporary Art Museum, Saint Louis (2010); Richard Artschwager!, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2012, traveled to Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, Haus der Kunst, Munich, and Nouveau Musée National de Monaco); and Punctuating Space: The Prints and Multiples of Richard Artschwager, Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, New York (2015).
January 16–February 23, 2019
980 Madison Avenue, New York
No More Running Man
January 9–February 22, 2014
980 Madison Avenue, New York
September 27–October 31, 2012
January 24–March 8, 2008
West 24th Street, New York
January 12–February 25, 2006
February 25–April 12, 2003
Heddon Street, London
April 5–May 4, 2002
West 24th Street, New York
A line (a)round an idea
Selected Works on Paper
Saturday, June 22, 2019, 11am
This event has been canceled.
Join us for a tour of A line (a)round an idea at Gagosian, Geneva. The exhibition, which presents black-and-white works on paper spanning a period of seventy years, includes work by Richard Artschwager, Georg Baselitz, Bruce Conner, Willem de Kooning, Günther Förg, Sam Francis, Keith Haring, Christine Hiebert, Hans Hofmann, Franz Kline, Brice Marden, Henri Matisse, Robert Motherwell, Ad Reinhardt, Richard Serra, Cy Twombly, Andy Warhol, Tom Wesselmann, and others. Gagosian’s Johan Nauckhoff will give an overview of the exhibition, focusing on ways in which modern and contemporary artists have explored the clarity and activating power of the simple line, mark, splatter, or stroke. To attend the free event, RSVP to email@example.com. Space is limited.
Installation view, A line (a)round an idea: Selected Works on Paper, Gagosian, Geneva, May 2–July 27, 2019. Artwork, left to right: © Cy Twombly Foundation; © 2019 Richard Artschwager/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York; © 2019 The Franz Kline Estate/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York; © Richard Serra; © 2019 Dedalus Foundation, Inc./Licensed by VAGA at Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
April 28–29, 2018, booth B8
Grimaldi Forum, Monaco
Gagosian is pleased to participate in Artmonte-Carlo 2018, presenting a selection of works by artists including Richard Artschwager, Davide Balula, Glenn Brown, Michael Craig-Martin, Edmund de Waal, Damien Hirst, Peter Lindbergh, Takashi Murakami & Virgil Abloh, Sterling Ruby, and Taryn Simon. To receive a PDF with detailed information on the works, please contact the gallery at firstname.lastname@example.org. To preview our booth go to www.artsy.net. To purchase tickets to attend the fair go to www.artmontecarlo.ch.
Sterling Ruby, Heart (6634), 2018 © Sterling Ruby Studio. Photo: Robert Wedemeyer
February 1–4, 2018, booth B19
Gagosian is pleased to participate in artgenève 2018, presenting a selection of works by Richard Artschwager, Georg Baselitz, John Currin, Dadamaino, Edmund de Waal, Keith Haring, Damien Hirst, Peter Lindbergh, Vera Lutter, Man Ray, Sally Mann, Brice Marden, Olivier Mosset, Albert Oehlen, Steven Parrino, Giuseppe Penone, Sigmar Polke, Ed Ruscha, Blair Thurman, Tatiana Trouvé, Tom Wesselmann, Franz West, Rachel Whiteread, and others.
Giuseppe Penone, Pelle di foglie—5 foglie a terra, 2011 © Giuseppe Penone
Through December 1, 2019
Hall Art Foundation, Reading, Vermont
This exhibition includes approximately forty paintings, sculptures, and works on paper from the Hall Collection that span Richard Artschwager’s career from 1964 to 2011.
Richard Artschwager, Splatter Piano, 1999 © 2019 Richard Artschwager/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Through February 2, 2020
Museo di arte moderna e contemporanea di Trento e Rovereto, Italy
This retrospective, curated by Germano Celant, celebrates Richard Artschwager’s diverse artistic production. By subtly altering the familiar, Artschwager’s art challenges accepted notions of the real and encourages unconventional ways of seeing.
Richard Artschwager, Self-Portrait, 2003 © 2019 Richard Artschwager/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Richard Artschwager in
Harald Szeemann: Museum of Obsessions
February 26–May 26, 2019
Castello di Rivoli Museo d’Arte Contemporanea, Turin, Italy
Harald Szeemann: Museum of Obsessions explores the life and career of the quintessential exhibition maker, from his groundbreaking involvement with the avant-garde movements of the 1960s and ’70s and his global contemporary exhibitions of the 1990s and 2000s, to his personal reading of early twentieth-century modernism. This show originated at the Getty Center in Los Angeles. Work by Richard Artschwager is included.
Richard Artschwager, blp, 2013 © 2019 Richard Artschwager/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
A Journey That Wasn’t
June 30, 2018–February 10, 2019
The Broad, Los Angeles
This exhibition explores complex representations of time and its passage. The show includes more than fifty works drawn from the museum’s collection of postwar and contemporary art and features more than twenty artists, including Richard Artschwager, Gregory Crewdson, Andreas Gursky, Anselm Kiefer, and Ed Ruscha.
Ed Ruscha, Azteca/Azteca In Decline, 2007, Broad Art Foundation © Ed Ruscha