until 10.02. | #4091ARTatBerlin | Galerie Max Hetzler (Potsdamer Str.) shows from 03. November 2023 the exhibition Body by the artist Richard Prince.
‘In my mind the “conventions” of the figure is what’s cool. Trying to make something different out of something that’s already been done to death makes me bend over backward, hold my breath and count to ten. I take a pulse. It’s faint. But I feel it. It’s barely there. Flat line? Almost. But I hold on. Lay it on me. Give me some skin. Give me some bones. It’s just like that The Mamas & the Papas song… “I’m in the mood for love.”’
– Richard Prince, 2015
Galerie Max Hetzler is pleased to present a solo exhibition by Richard Prince at Potsdamer Straße 77-87, in Berlin. This is the artist’s second solo presentation with the gallery.
Cropped, pasted, painted and scanned, the exhibited works testify to Prince’s longstanding preoccupation with collecting and repurposing images while placing a renewed emphasis on the importance of the corporeal in his oeuvre. In these compositions, Prince splinters and reassembles photographic fragments of the female figure with varying degrees of legibility. The resulting collages assemble a new ‘body’, complicating notions of authorship and building on the tradition of figure painting.
Since the late 1970s, Prince has chronicled a wealth of images that haunt the American psyche – from cowboys and biker chicks to cars, nurses, and gag cartoons. In 1977, while working in the tear sheets department of Time Life, Prince began rephotographing discarded advertisements, removing all text before blurring, cropping, enlarging and, at times, grouping them for his own compositions. The human figure has also continued to be a crucial through-line, tracing back to the artist’s studies in the late 1960s and the figure drawing classes he attended upon his move to New York in 1974. Thinking about human flesh is ‘second nature’, Prince notes. ‘It grounds you and makes you think about posture.’
Fragmented and removed from their original context, some body parts remain recognisable as breasts, buttocks, bellybuttons and torsos, while others appear entirely abstracted, their curvatures recalling landscapes or dispersing into pure form. From up close, certain skins are grainy and textured, while the glossy surfaces of others evoke the cool smoothness of classical busts.
Remnants of tape used by the artist testify to the physical construction of these works, as do the visible brushstrokes that delineate the backgrounds of the darker images. In some compositions, Prince draws over his collages, extending the reconstructed bodies to endow them with grotesque feet, hands, and heads. Distinctions between printing and painting, natural and artificial, as much as the artist’s body and the body of the anonymous subject, thus literally and conceptually converge.
Richard Prince (*1949, Panama Canal Zone) lives and works in Upstate New York. Prince’s work has been the subject of numerous solo exhibitions in international institutions, including the Louisiana Museum of Art, Humblebaek; The Karpidas Collection (both 2022); Museum for Modern Art, Weserburg (2021); Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (2019); Fundación Malta – Museo de Arte Latinoamericano de Buenos Aires; Espace cultural Louis Vuitton, Beijing; Astrup Fearnley Museet, Oslo (all 2018); Los Angeles County Museum of Art (2017); Kunsthaus Bregenz (2014); Picasso Museum, Malaga (2012); Le Consortium, Dijon (2011); Serpentine Gallery, London (2008); Walker Art Center, Minneapolis (2008); Guggenheim Museum, New York (2007); Kunsthalle Zürich (2002); Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Basel (2001) and MAK, Vienna (2000), among others. The artist participated in the Biennale di Venezia in 2003 and 2007, as well as The Whitney Biennial in 1985, 1987, 1997 and 2004.
Works by Richard Prince are in the collections of international museums including the Art Institute of Chicago; Astrup Fearnley Museet, Oslo; The Broad, Los Angeles; Centre Pompidou, Paris; Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris; Institute of Contemporary Arts, Boston; Kunstmuseum Basel; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Palazzo Grassi, Pinault Collection, Venice; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Tate, London; Victoria & Albert Museum, London; and Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, among others.
Location: Potsdamer Straße 77–87, 10785 Berlin
Opening: Friday, 3 November 2023, 6 – 8 pm
Exhibition dates: Friday, 3 November 2023 – Saturday, 10 February 2024To the gallery
Image caption: Richard Prince, Untitled (Body Painting), 2021, courtesy the artist and Galerie Max Hetzler, Berlin | Paris | London, Foto: def image.
Exhibition Richard Prince – Galerie Max Hetzler | Contemporary Art – Zeitgenössische Kunst in Berlin – Exhibitions Berlin Galleries – ART at Berlin