Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois

6 APRIL TO 17 JULY 2022

Exhibition Hall of the Department of Prints and Drawings

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Press text

Press release

Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois
6 APRIL TO 17 JULY 2022

Exhibition Hall of the Department of Prints and Drawings

After more than twenty-five years, the Städel Museum is once again dedicating an exhibition to American art on paper from 1945 to the present. From 6 April to 17 July 2022, some fifty outstanding prints, drawings, and multiples by artists such as Louise Bourgeois, Chuck Close, Jim Dine, Jasper Johns, Bruce Nauman, Jackson Pollock, Larry Rivers, Kiki Smith, or Kara Walker will be presented, all of which deal with the theme of being human.

American art of the past eighty years is full of boundary crossings and contradictions. It is as unconventional as it is multifaceted: Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art, Concept Art, Minimal and Performance Art. In a relatively short period of time after 1945, various and at times contradictory aesthetic concepts developed in New York and (later) on the West Coast. Artists chose their media and materials freely and strategically – depending on the message they wanted to convey. Printmaking played a key role in this context. As a laboratory for experimentation in form and content alike, it offered artists new possibilities. From the 1960s onward, this went hand in hand with the founding of new printing and paper workshops. Artists collaborated closely with these workshops to produce technically sophisticated prints and objects (multiples), often in self-confidently large formats. This printmaking revolution went down in art history as the ‘Graphic Boom’.

Under the influence of ever-new political, economic, and societal upheavals and crises, many of the works revolve around human existence itself. Naturalistic depictions of the human figure now give way to the sign-like and abstract, the incomplete, the imprint, the blank space. Artists reflect on human perception and experience as fragmentary and question language as an instrument for describing the world.

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Press images

Jackson Pollock (1912–1956)
Figure, 1948
Enamel paint on handmade wove paper
785 × 575 mm
Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main, Property of the Städelscher Museums-Verein e.V.
© Pollock-Krasner Foundation / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2022

Jackson Pollock, Figure, 1948

Louise Bourgeois (1911–2010)
Sainte Sébastienne, 1992
Drypoint on wove paper
2nd version, state IV (of IV)
1220 × 941 mm (sheet), 985 × 782 mm (plate)
No. 37/50
© The Easton Foundation / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2022

Louise Bourgeois, Sainte Sébastienne, 1992

Larry Rivers (1923–2002)
Eliza, 1968
Pencil and neon foil on wove paper, partially mounted on wood or metal foil, on cardboard, on wood, beneath transparent plastic
390 × 501 × 60 mm
Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main, Property of the Städelscher Museums-Verein e.V.
© VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2022

Larry Rivers, Eliza, 1968

Kiki Smith (*1954)
Untitled (Hair), 1990
Lithograph in black over blackish brown on handmade Japanese paper
915 × 910 mm (sheet)
No. 22/54
Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main
© Kiki Smith & Universal
Limited Art Editions, courtesy Pace Gallery

Kiki Smith, Untitled (Hair), 1990

Bruce Nauman (*1941)
Studies for Holograms
(1) pinched lips
1970
Screen print in yellow over black on Kromekote paper
661 × 661 mm (sheet), 518 × 661 mm (composition)
No. 137/150
Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main
© VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2022

Bruce Nauman, Studies for Holograms, (1) pinched lips, 1970

Jim Dine (*1935)
Silhouette Black Boots on Brown Paper, 1972
Lithograph on packing paper
761 × 558 mm (sheet)
No. 93/100
Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main
© VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2022

Jim Dine, Silhouette Black Boots on Brown Paper, 1972

Chuck Close (1940–2021)
Self-Portrait, 1999
Relief print on laser-cut acrylic plate on Japanese paper
999 × 754 mm (sheet), 975 × 750 mm (plate)
No. 7/99
Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main
© Chuck Close, courtesy Pace Gallery

Chuck Close, Self-Portrait, 1999

Robert Longo (*1953)
Jules, 1982/83
Lithograph in black and grey with embossing on wove paper
933 × 532 mm (sheet), 762 × 381 mm (plate/compositon)
Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main
© VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2022

Robert Longo, Jules, 1982/83

Kara Walker (*1969)
no world
From "An Unpeopled Land in Uncharted Waters"
2010
Etching with aquatint, sugar-lift technique, spit bite, and drypoint on wove paper
Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main, Property of the Städelscher Museums-Verein e.V.
768 × 1007 mm (sheet), 606 × 905 mm (plate)
Ex. 28/30
© Kara Walker

Kara Walker, no world, 2010

Dorothy Dehner (1901–1994)
Letter, 1953
Etching, aquatint, roulette, and some drypoint on wove paper
242 × 312 mm (sheet), 125 × 176 mm (plate)
Ex. 1/20
Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main
© 2022 Dorothy Dehner Foundation for the Visual Arts

Dorothy Dehner, Letter, 1953

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"
Photo: Städel Museum – Norbert Miguletz

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"
Photo: Städel Museum – Norbert Miguletz

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"
Photo: Städel Museum – Norbert Miguletz

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"
Photo: Städel Museum – Norbert Miguletz

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"
Photo: Städel Museum – Norbert Miguletz

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"
Photo: Städel Museum – Norbert Miguletz

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"
Photo: Städel Museum – Norbert Miguletz

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"
Photo: Städel Museum – Norbert Miguletz

Exhibition view "Into the New. Being Human: From Pollock to Bourgeois"
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Pamela Rohde

Head of Press and Online Communication
rohde@staedelmuseum.de
+49(0)69-605098-170

Jannikhe Möller

Deputy Head of Press
and Moving Images
moeller@staedelmuseum.de
+49(0)69-605098-195

Susanne Hafner

Press and Online Communication
hafner@staedelmuseum.de
+49(0)69-605098-212

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