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Villa Romana Fellows 2014 - International Artists Live in Florence
AxME - Ellen Gallagher at the Tate Modern
In the Urban Jungle - Hou Hanru Curates the 5th Auckland Triennial
The Golden Rider: Lenbachhaus Radiates New Splendor - supported by Deutsche Bank Stiftung
Imran Qureshi in New York´s Metropolitan Museum
Beyond Borders - Arab Female Artists at the ZKM
Master of Institutional Critique - Deutsche Bank Foundation Sponsors John Knight Project in Portikus
A Fantastic Journey - Wangechi Mutu in Sydney and Durham

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Classic of Institutional Critique
John Knight at Portikus in Frankfurt



John Knight is an insider’s tip among conceptual artists. Born in California in 1945, he has intervened in art spaces since the 1970s with his reduced installations consisting of words, letters, and logos, thus exploring connections between art, design, and the power of institutions. Now one of Knight’s works is on view in Portikus in Frankfurt. The project is sponsored by the Deutsche Bank Foundation, which has supported an exhibition at Portikus every year since 1999. The exhibition venue, which belongs to the Städel School, is one of the most renowned contemporary art spaces in Frankfurt.

John Knight is often associated with the term “institutional critique” – with the systematic investigation of the mechanisms of art institutions, their systems, and their power structures. Each of his works reacts to the place he is invited to exhibit his works at. In his current project, Knight engages with the history and function of Portikus and its close relationship to the Städel School. In addition, he acts as a mentor for young artists. Knight is planning a series of discussions, lectures, and workshops that will take place at the Städel School, in Portikus, and in different studios of young Frankfurt artists. In Portikus itself is showing a text work based on a conversation between the artist and André Rottmann. Rottmann, an art historian and former editor-in-chief of the magazine Texte zur Kunst, knows the artist’s work well. As an employee of the research group BildEvidenz at the Freie Universität in Berlin, Rottmann is currently working on a project focusing on institution-critical art since 1969.


John Knight
May 4 – June 30, 2013
Portikus, Frankfurt




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