Yilmaz Dziewior to Head Cologne’s Museum Ludwig

Yilmaz Dziewior © Kunsthaus Bregenz, Photo: Markus Tretter
Yilmaz Dziewior © Kunsthaus Bregenz, Photo: Markus Tretter

Following the sudden departure of  former director Philip Kaiser from the Museum Ludwig in February, Yilmaz Dziewior has been named the new director of what is largely considered Germany’s most important museum for modern and contemporary art. He will take over the post, currently held in interim by Katia Baudin, in February 2015. Dziewior currently serves as the director of the Kunsthaus Bregenz, located on the Austrian shore of Lake Constance. He moved to the Kunsthaus from the Hamburger Kunstverein in 2009. Recently, Austria announced that Dziewior will curate their pavilion at next summer’s Venice Biennale.

The German art world was abuzz with praise for the decision on Tuesday and Wednesday. Pundits expressed confidence that Dziewior would be able to fill the shoes of Kaiser’s predecessor, Kaspar König. Though Kaiser oversaw successful exhibition’s such as that of Phil Collins and brought Pierre Huyghe’s important Centre Pompidou show to Cologne (despite departing before it opened), he was not able to emerge from his much-loved antecedent’s shadow in the little over a year that he stayed at the Museum Ludwig. Having come to Cologne from LA MOCA, Kaiser said that his family was unable to adjust to life in the Rhineland upon leaving his post.

Dziewior has been noted for his dynamic and forward-looking exhibitions, which often throw together established positions like Isa Genzken (coincidentally a favorite of König’s as well) with young emerging counter parts. He is a strong proponent of the post-Internet art movement. Speaking to der Standard, which, along side other Austrian outlets, is understandably sad to see him go, Dziewior said, “It was an offer I couldn’t refuse.”

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