Neues Museum Nürnberg invites you to a book presentation of the edition “Zuweilen ist Ehrlichkeit die eleganteste Maske” by Werner Büttner on 26 October 2022. This will be accompanied by a talk with Thomas Eller.
Image above: Courtesy Neues Museum Nürnberg
Simone Schimpf, Director of the Neues Museum Nürnberg
Manfred Rothenberger, starfruit publications
Sometimes honesty is the most elegant mask. Thomas Eller in conversation with Werner Büttner.
“I am now trying to reveal what it is possible for me to reveal.”
Born in Jena in 1954, Werner Büttner, whom the Hamburger Kunsthalle honoured with a highly acclaimed solo exhibition in autumn 2021, already caused a stir in the 1980s as a representative of the Junge Wilde. Both through joint projects with Albert Oehlen and Martin Kippenberger and with his own painting, Büttner has left a lasting mark on the German art scene. Werner Büttner’s paintings – still lifes, self-portraits, animal pieces and history paintings – are characterised by their socially critical and ironic content, with which the artist comments on human activity and existence without regard for taboos: “What is man? And how should he live? It seems uncertain to me whether any progress has been made in answering these questions since antiquity.” (Werner Büttner) The volume of conversations Zuweilen ist Ehrlichkeit die eleganteste Maske (Sometimes Honesty is the Most Elegant Mask) is based on an email correspondence between Werner Büttner and the artist and curator Thomas Eller that lasted over ten months. From the beginning, the two let their exchange grow beyond a mere question-and-answer game – the conversation oscillates between biographical narration, philosophical discussion and artistic questions based on the examination of relevant works of art. The results are very personal confessions, provocative theses and exciting insights into Werner Büttner’s life and thinking, his work and his attitude to painting.
SOMETIMES HONESTY IS
THE MOST ELEGANT MASK
Thomas Eller in conversation with Werner Büttner
Publisher: Institute for Modern Art Nuremberg
36 pages with 30 colour and 42 b/w illustrations
Hardcover; 14 x 21 cm
Vernissage: Wednesday, 26 October 2022, 6 p.m.
Neues Museum Nürnberg