Matthew Barney - Bildungsroman

This Web Catalogue is published in conjunction with the exhibition:

26.02.2016 – 15.05.2016

Matthew Barney (b. 1967, USA) is arguably the artist of the 1990s who most profoundly changed the language of sculpture. He achieved this through a unique conflation of performance, film and sculpture, and his characteristic use of unconventional materials such as thermoplastics and petroleum jelly. For Barney, sculpture is an emanation of places, performances, films, photos, drawings and ephemera that together create complex, open-ended and symbolically charged stories, characterised by an innovative artistic idiom, aesthetics and narrative structures.

For this exhibition Barney has created a new layout and a narrative that goes from Facility of DECLINE (1991) through The CREMASTER Cycle (1994–2002) and DRAWING RESTRAINT 9 (2005) to River of Fundament (2014). Bildungsroman, the title of the exhibition, makes use of the literary term for a coming-of-age novel, thus reflecting how the constellation of works can be read as a journey in the shaping of Barney’s artistic practice.

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