Shoplifters from Venus
3 June – 20 August 2023 | Beim Stadthaus
Sylvie Fleury (*1961 in Geneva) became known for her sophisticated stagings of glamour, fashion and lifestyle: her Shopping Bags already attracted attention in the 1990s. Each of the bags, including those from global labels, contained the object the artist had purchased with it. To combine art and commerce so uninhibitedly seemed disreputable. Even more irritating was the fact that an artist devoted herself to the almost obsessive shopping of luxury goods, seemingly uncritically indulging in glamour and lifestyle. Meanwhile, the exchange between valorized archival culture and profane space has a long tradition in the visual arts since Marcel Duchamp.
Sylvie Fleury consistently combines this tradition with the deconstruction of traditional gender clichés – and does so as ironically as she does with relish, for example, when she has models in high heels strut across Carl Andre’s floor plates. In her artistic practice, which spans sculpture, performance, installation, and painting, she employs strategies associated with early Conceptualism, Pop Art, and Minimalism, opening up a critical view of the largely male-dominated history of art.
Sylvie Fleury’s work has been widely recognized internationally since her first institutional solo exhibition at Zurich’s Migros Museum in 1998. Numerous solo exhibitions followed, including 2001 at the Center for Art and Media (ZKM), Karlsruhe and Le Magasin, Centre National d’Art Contemporain, Grenoble, 2007 at the Schinkel Pavillon, Berlin, and 2016 at Villa Stuck, Munich. In 2018, the artist was awarded the Swiss Grand Prix Art/Prix Meret Oppenheim.
For the first time in over fifteen years, the Kunst Museum Winterthur presents a comprehensive solo exhibition of the artist’s work in Switzerland. Alongside iconic pieces, new works realized especially for the exhibition will be on display. Together, they provide an insight into the diverse and consistently developed œuvre of one of the country’s most important artists in this major retrospective.
Curators: Konrad Bitterli & David Schmidhauser
With kind support