New Pictures 2: Marco Breuer
Opens February 18, 2010
Second Solo Exhibition Continues MIA’s New Photography Series
Presenting International Avant-garde Photographers
Minneapolis, MN. December 18—The second exhibition in the MIA’s new photography series featuring important new work from artists from around the globe will present work of German artist Marco Breuer, one of the most innovative photographers working with abstraction today. His bold and experimental approach eschews the camera itself, inviting viewers to consider: What is a photograph? He strips photography to its essential materiality, presenting colorful and shapely works created by manipulating the surface of light-sensitive photographic paper. The exhibition will be on view from February 18 through August 1, 2010, in two parts. For the opening, Breuer will present ten works, including a dyptich and triptych, produced from 2001 to 2009. Then, in mid-March, he will alter the space in the Perlman Gallery by painting the walls black to evoke a darkroom and a space of creativity. The gallery will then serve as an arena for a site-specific drawing that integrates the exhibited works.
“Marco Breuer challenges the viewer to re-examine the most basic assumptions about photography,” said curator David Little. “Both his hand-made process and the modest scale of his completed works suggest new ways to create photographs during a time when Photoshop and monumentality are de rigueur. His experience as an artist and his single-minded approach make him a terrific artist to participate in the MIA’s ‘New Pictures’ series.”
Using an extensive and continually evolving range of processes such as cyanotype, gum bichromate, and chromogenic paper, Breuer physically extracts abstract and visually compelling images from photographic paper. He might place burning coals on the paper, or slice into it, or sandpaper the emulsion until holes appear. Much like mid-20th century European and American abstract painters, Breuer said he likes “to be in there, physically involved with the image.”
Breuer confronts and upends many of photography’s historical and current conventions. In a time of technological progress, he employs antiquated printing methods to produce new images for the present. The distinctive blue tone of Spin (E-197) is the result of a cyanotype printing method invented by Sir John Herschel in the mid-19th century, at the very beginning of photography’s emergence. In a medium known for multiple editions, he makes unique works of art. And at a time when large-scale is often equated with being contemporary, Breuer creates modestly scaled photographs in non-standard sizes.
Breuer was born in 1966 in Landshut, Germany. He has exhibited widely throughout the United States and Europe and his work is included in numerous collections, including those at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, the Baltimore Museum of Art, the Fogg Art Museum at Harvard University in Cambridge, the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the New York Public Library, the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Staatsgalerie in Stuttgart, Germany. His publication SMTWTFS received wide critical acclaim and a photo-eye Gallery Award for Best Photography Book of 2002. In 2007 Aperture published a monograph of his work titled Early Recordings. Breuer lives in upstate New York.
Breuer will lecture on his work March 13, 2010. For more information please go to the New Pictures Web site at http://www.artsmia.org/new-pictures/.
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