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Wolves in Brisbane - Cai Guo-Qiang's "Head On" at the Gallery of Modern Art
A Place of Art Production and Exchange - Villa Romana at the Bundeskunsthalle
Views 2013 - Lukasz Jastrubczak Wins the Most Important Prize for Young Polish Art
Regarding the Other - Lorna Simpson at the Haus der Kunst
Women Artists in London - The Highlights of Frieze Week 2013
Jubilee in Regent’s Park - 10th Year of Deutsche Bank’s Partnership with Frieze London
Stitching Instead of Spraying - New Art for Züri West
Britain's Got Talent - Deutsche Bank Award Winners Announced in London

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Regarding the Other
Lorna Simpson at the Haus der Kunst



Until now, Lorna Simpson’s photographs, films, and collages have only rarely been on view in Germany. Now, however, it’s finally possible to discover the work of one of the most significant African American artists here, as well: the Haus der Kunst in Munich presents her first major European retrospective. Simpson was born in 1960 in Brooklyn and has work in the Deutsche Bank Collection. For thirty years, Simpson’s art has combined formal elegance with socially critical issues. Her works explore how latent sexism and racism determine the way we regard others, how we communicate with and treat one another. Simpson often combines images with texts that are reminiscent of short prose poems or excerpts from a film script.

For many years, Simpson photographed figures with their backs turned to the viewer. An act that is both simple and demonstrative: because she deliberately doesn’t show the face, she circumvents the usual process by which the person looking evaluates the other. Regarding this theme, Simpson explains that she tries "to build very complex characters that live outside of a stereotype of time, place, identity, sexuality, and race."

Along with photo/text works such as Waterbearer (1986), which brought about her breakthrough in the mid-eighties, current works are also on view at the Haus der Kunst—for instance the photo series 1957–2009 (2009) and the video installation Chess (2013). Both works are based on photographs taken in 1957 that show a young African American woman in Los Angeles posing like a budding starlet for the camera. In order to emphasize this act of self-orchestration even more clearly, Simpson decided to reenact the images with herself in the “main role.” It was the first time the artist posed for the camera for her staged works. Like many of Simpsons' works “1957-2009” blurs the boundaries between reality and fiction.

Lorna Simpson
10/25/13 – 2/2/14
Haus der Kunst, Munich




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