25 January – 9 August | Beim Stadthaus
Walead Beshty (*1976) deals with how the art system influences art production and how the resulting works are able to shape this. His work is based on an awareness of the interactions between the social context and the social conditions: Materials, production conditions, studio and exhibition spaces, transport systems, institutions and the environment of education, criticism, the public, collectors, the art market, etc. – all these are the basis of his work. They help determine how a work of art is created, presented and ultimately perceived.
Beshty understands the art system as a microsystem of the globalised capitalist society, characterised by the exchange of information as well as the circulation and distribution mechanisms that are necessary for this exchange. In this context, works of art are no longer conceivable merely as autonomous aesthetic or formalistic objects, but, depending on the situation, they also become dynamic objects, commodities, carriers of meaning, transported goods, message storages, fetishes, objects of research, etc., representing the classical work of art. These representative functions are revealed in the artist’s works. Viewers, in turn, are free to choose which aspects they wish to select and pursue – from simple aesthetic contemplation to complex social criticism.
The Kunst Museum Winterthur hosts Walead Beshty’s first solo exhibition in a museum in the German-speaking world. The exhibition focuses on his current output, from which numerous works will be shown for the first time. But also the photograms, with which the artist first attracted international attention, as well as his well-known Fed-Ex works will be on display.
The exhibition in Winterthur was created in collaboration with the MAMCO in Geneva. The result of this collaboration will be a comprehensive monograph, which will be published by Koenig Books London in March 2020.
Curator: Lynn Kost
With kind support