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Neue Nationalgalerie: Isa Genzken. 75/75 | 13.07.-27.11.2023

Editors’ Choice

On the occasion of her 75th birthday, the Neue Nationalgalerie is honouring Isa Genzken with the exhibition “Isa Genzken. 75/75” and shows 75 sculptures from all creative phases of the German artist from the 1970s until today. On view are major works such as the 10-metre-long “Blue-Grey-Yellow Hyperbolo ‘MBB” (1981), “Atelier” (1990), “Venice” (1993), “Nefertiti – The Original” (2012) and “Actors” (2013).

Fig. above: Isa Genzken, Schauspieler, 2013 Schaufensterpuppe, Stoff, Plastik, Metall, Holz, Lack/mannequin, fabric, plastic, metal, wood, lacquer 160 x 70 x 60 cm Privatsammlung Rheinland, Courtesy Galerie Buchholz/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2023

In its arrangement of individual sculptures, the presentation in the upper hall of the Neue Nationalgalerie is reminiscent of exhibitions of classical antique collections. Models, archetypes and measurements of man and modern society emerge in the line-up.

Isa Genzken Nofretete – Das Original 2012 Nefertiti plaster bust with sunglasses on wooden base wooden plinth and colour photograph in aluminium frame
Isa Genzken “Nofretete – Das Original”, 2012 Nefertiti plaster bust with sunglasses on wooden base, wooden plinth and colour photograph in aluminium frame 184 x 50.5 x 40 cm. Privatsammlung Rheinland – Courtesy Galerie Buchholz/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2023 / Photo: Sascha Fuis

The sculptures are not hewn from one material, but in their heterogeneous materiality embody the technologies, plastic, concrete, décor and functional objects that pervade everyday life today. Genzken (born 1948) takes these remeasurements and changing framings over into the true, the beautiful, the absurd and the exaggerated. Her work starts from actualities, such as a window or an actor’s figure, which she changes and distorts into her own realities and formal language. The individual and also she as an artist, her own biography, are tools of this questioning of ideals of Western society and its types of production.

“The works are meant to function more as moving images than sculptures; you see a new image from every angle. Nothing is rigid or two-dimensional, it’s cinematic.” says Isa Genzken in a 2016 interview. Visitors find themselves being questioned through the confrontation of familiar everydayness. Collages of life worlds emerge. Not least through reflections in the surfaces of the objects, the viewers themselves become actors, tools and scales in the exhibition space.

On Monday, 27 November 2023, the museum will be open for a special opening on the occasion of the artist’s birthday.

Curated by Klaus Biesenbach, Director Neue Nationalgalerie and Lisa Botti curatorial assistance.

A catalogue will be published to accompany the exhibition. The exhibition is made possible by the Friends of the Nationalgalerie.


Kulturforum, Neue Nationalgalerie
Potsdamer Straße 50
10785 Berlin


Opening: Wednesday, 12 July, 7 pm

Exhibition dates: Thursday, 13 July – Monday, 27 November 2023

Tue – Wed 10 am – 6 pm
Thu 10am – 8pm
Fri – Sun 10 am – 6 pm

DEEDS NEWS- Courtesy of Neue Nationalgalerie - Portrait Isa Genzken Isa Genzken
Portrait Isa Genzken (c) Isa Genzken
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