2015 Fall Art Preview: The 25 Shows Around Europe Everyone Should See
Our top picks for shows across Europe.
The long summer days are gone and it’s back-to-school time for everyone, but if there’s one thing that’s truly uplifting about September it is the number of exciting art exhibitions that lie ahead, to ease us into the season.
September, October, and November are indeed the key months for most galleries and institutions in Europe, and the shows we have selected prove it.
From phenomenal women artists like Louise Bourgeois, Hito Steyerl, Hanne Darboven, and Ericka Beckman to historical heavyweights like Francisco de Goya and Piet Mondrian, and, of course, hotly-anticipated shows, like Ai Weiwei‘s survey at London’s Royal Academy of Arts, we have it all covered.
Get your diaries out, the spectacle is about to begin.
Otobong Nkanga at M HKA
Otobong Nkanga’s exhibition is the first in the new IN SITU programme at M KHA in Antwerp. While the huge space usually puts on similarly large monographic shows, this program, developed by curator Nav Haq, is dedicated to smaller solo exhibitions. Nkanga works in a variety of media and had created large-scale tapestries, drawings and a carpet for the exhibition. The works will create an environment in which Nkanga will perform and create participatory actions. (Amah-Rose Abrams)
Otobong Nkanga: IN SITU will be on view from October 16 2015 – January 17 2016
Ericka Beckman at VeneKlasen/Werner
Ericka Beckman at VeneKlasen/Werner features three film installations and a series of never-before-seen drawings by the American filmmaker. In her first solo exhibition in Berlin, the artist presents her works Cinderella (1986), Hiatus (1999/2015), and Switch Center (2003), which span the last three decades of Beckman’s output. (Henri Neuendorf)
“Ericka Beckman” is on view from September 12 – November 7, 2015
Paul McCarthy at Schinkel Pavillon
Coinciding with Berlin Art Week, Schinkel Pavillon presents a solo show by Paul McCarthy. Works in a variety of mediums including photography, drawing, painting, sculpture, video, performance, and installation, McCarthy explores the contradictions between appearance and reality. (Henri Neuendorf)
“Paul McCarthy” is on view from September 12 – November 22, 2015
Piet Mondrian at Martin Gropius Bau
Regarded as one of the founders of abstract art with his distinctive black lines and blue and red rectangular boxes, Martin Gropius Bau is putting on an exhibition featuring a retrospective of about 50 paintings and drawings by Piet Mondrian, allowing visitors to trace the legendary artist’s creative development. (Henri Neuendorf)
Piet Mondrian, “The Line” is on view from September 4 – December 6, 2015
Gedi Sibony at Gallery Neu
For his third solo show at Galerie Neu, the American artist Gedi Sibony presents large-scale wall pieces which were sourced from the sides of decommissioned semi-trailers. The paint and graphics on the found objects are indicative of the commercial pressures of contemporary society. Like much of the artist’s work, the pieces appear straight-forward at first sight, but unravel slowly. (Henri Neuendorf)
“Gedi Sibony” will be on view from September 16 – October 24 2015
Raymond Hains at Galerie Max Hetzler
Organized with representatives of the artist’s family, this exhibition will contain work spanning six decades from the 1940s to 2000, although the exhibition, which will be shown in both Berlin locations as well as in the gallery’s Paris location, will show works in a non-chronological way.
The work of French artist Raymond Hains encompasses film, painting, and objects. Hains was involved with both the Lettrisme and Situationist movements; as a Situationist he was known as “Raymond l’Abstrait.” However, he is most famous for his collage work. (Amah-Rose Abrams)
“Raymond Hains” will be on view from October 10 – November 14, 2015
BONN AND MUNICH
Hanne Darboven at Haus der Kunst, Munich and Bundeskunsthalle, Bonn
Hanne Darboven’s dual retrospectives at the Haus der Kunst, Munich and the Bundeskunsthalle, Bonn is a testament to the conceptual artist’s standing. The shows present not only Darboven’s signature writing-based works, but also various examples of her object-based art. Selected items from Darboven’s studio will also be exhibited alongside the artworks to contextualize the artist’s creative process. (Henri Neuendorf)
“Hanne Darboven: Aufklärung (Enlightenment)” in on view from 18 September to February 14 2016. “Zeitgeschichten (Time Histories)” is on view from September 11 – January 17 2016 at Bundeskunsthalle, Bonn
Klara Lidén at Wiels
Klara Lidén’s film and installation will be taking over a floor of the contemporary art museum and converted brewery, Wiels in Brussels. Lidén works with film, painting, and installation, marked by interventions, and influenced by forms of vandalism, and street art. Her work explores her interior world or focuses on her relationship with the world around her.
The exhibition includes the humorous video work Warm up (2014) which sees the artist rehearsing with professional ballet dancers. (Amah-Rose Abrams)
Klara Lidén: Battement Battu will be on view from October 29 2015 – January 10 2016
GRAZ AND SALZBURG
AA Bronson at Salzburger Kunstverein and Grazer Kunstverein
As the sole surviving member of 70s and 80s collective General Idea, AA Bronson will be collaborating with Salzburger Kunstverein and Grazer Kunstverein on a hybrid show comprising of both performances and artworks.
The exhibition at Salzburger Kunstverein will begin as a queer reflection on Hieronymus Bosch’s Garden of Earthly Delights (1500) but will also include a medieval peep show accompanied by sound installations and sculptural works.
The exhibition at Grazer Kunstverein, “Sacre du Printemps ,” named after Stravinsky and Nijinsky’s scandalous 1913 ballet, will involve an invocation of spirits and a show-within-a-show of queer zines published from the 1970s to today.(Amah-Rose Abrams)
Ai Weiwei at the Royal Academy of Arts
Curated in collaboration with Ai Weiwei, the exhibition—his first major institutional survey in the UK—will present some of his most important works, from the time he returned to China from the US in 1993 to today. The show will feature both existing and new works created specifically for the Royal Academy’s galleries and courtyard, including a number of large-scale installations. Of these, one of the most remarkable will be Straight (2008-12), made in response to the children who died as a result of shoddy construction following the Sichuan Earthquake in 2008, and formed by about 200 tons of steel. (Lorena Muñoz-Alonso)
“Ai Weiwei” is on view from September 19 — December 13, 2015.
Prem Sahib at the ICA
Prem Sahib is one of London’s hottest young artists and for his first institutional solo exhibition in the city, he will present new and recent works exploring his usual concerns: intimacy, sexuality, relationships, desire and gay communities. Often minimal and sparse in color, Sahib’s sculpture, paintings, works on paper, and performance explores relationship between public and personal spaces, often evoking a sense of intimate encounters that remain hidden from plain sight in public places. (Lorena Muñoz-Alonso)
“Prem Sahib: Side On” will be on view from Sep 24 – Nov 15, 2015.
Ryan Gander at Lisson Gallery
Ryan Gander‘s third solo exhibition at Lisson Gallery will feature a series of new interlinking works, each of them dedicated to different inspirations. Encompassing everything from a kitchen sink to a pebble beach, the exhibition will be a sort of individuated encyclopedia, including a year’s worth of skies, the clothes of absentee statues, a tent, a helium balloon, and the artist’s phone number. Typical of Gander’s art, these new works will be elliptic and opaque, starting point for stories that the viewers have to decipher or invent. (Lorena Muñoz-Alonso)
“Ryan Gander: Fieldwork” will be on view from September 25 – 31 October, 2015.
Kemang Wa Lehulere at Gasworks
Gasworks re-opens its doors on September 24 after buying their building and doing it up to the tune of £2.1 million.
For their inaugural show they have chosen South African artist Kemang Wa Lehulere, featuring his first solo show in the UK. Lehulere’s work uses large- scale drawing, installation, text, and performance dealing with the past, present, and future of his native South Africa alongside historical amnesia. (Amah-Rose Abrams)
“Kemang Wa Lehulere: Sincerely yours” will be on view from September 24 – November 8, 2015.
Tetsumi Kudo at Hauser and Wirth
Tetsumi Kudo will be showing at Hauser & Wirth’s gallery on London’s Saville Row. Kudo was a core part of the “anti-art movement” in Japan in the 1950s ,thus beginning his preoccupation with consumer excess and the impact of nuclear disaster. His work includes performative painting and sculpture. His assemblages consist of plastic spheres, neon containers, and organic materials combining the man-made and the natural, creating synthetic eco-systems.
Kudo’s fame was limited in Europe but as his works were cited as an influence to Mike Kelley, Paul McCarthy, and Allan Kaprow, awareness of his art has grown. (Amah-Rose Abrams)
“Tetsumi Kudo” will be on view from September 22 – November 21, 2015.
The huge gallery space located in Soho will house two immersive film installations including a 40-meter, 8 screen caravan on its upper floor. More Sweetly Play the Dance (2015) is based around the medieval notion that dancing can stave off death and is about the plight of refugees journeying from country to country in search of a home. The exhibition will also include, drawing, painting, and sculpture. (Amah-Rose Abrams)
“William Kentridge: More Sweetly Play the Dance” is on view from September 11 – October 24 2015
Emily Jacir at The Whitechapel Gallery
The Whitechapel Gallery is showing the first ever UK survey of Emily Jacir’s work. Born in Palestine and raised in Saudi Arabia, Jacir addresses political, biographical, and social issues in her work. The exhibition will feature sculpture, drawings, and installations including the UK premier of the work Material for a film (2004-) which won the Golden Lion at the Venice Biennale in 2007.
Jacir explores the themes of immigration, freedom, and exile making this a very timely exhibition especially located as it is, in London’s multicultural East End. (Amah-Rose Abrams)
“Emily Jacir: Europa” will be on view from September 30 – January 3, 2015
Francis de Goya at the National Gallery
It’s hard to believe that, when the National Gallery in London launches “Goya: The Portraits”, it will be the first show ever dedicated to that crucial side of Francisco de Goya’s work. The greatest mystery about Goya is not how he came to paint so well. The real conundrum is how someone who painted so badly, by the stodgy standards of 18th-century art academies, could have been such a big success in his day. With luck, this London show will provide some kind of explanation for how a modern could flourish in an age of classicism. (Blake Gopnik)
“Goya: The Portraits” will be on view from October 7, 2015 – January 10, 2016
Hito Steyerl at Museo Reina Sofia
Hito Steyerl’s first solo exhibition in a Spanish museum comes courtesy of the impeccable Museo Reina Sofia in Madrid. The show will gather over 12 existing works by Steyerl—including Guards (2012), How Not to Be Seen: a Fucking Didactic Educational .MOV file (2013), Is the museum a battlefield? (2013), and Liquidity Inc. (2014)—as well as a new site-specific commission. (Lorena Muñoz-Alonso)
“Hito Steyerl” will be on view from November 11, 2015 – March 21, 2016.
Louise Bourgeois at Garage Museum
The Garage Museum will show the first comprehensive show of Bourgeois’s work in Moscow with an exhibition focusing on a series of sculptural environments created in the last 20 years of the artist’s life. The exhibition will also include a small selection of early sculptures, paintings and drawings allowing viewers to trace Bourgeois’s artistic maturation. (Henri Neuendorf)
“Louise Bourgeois, Structures of Existence: The Cells” will be on view from September 25, 2015 – February 7, 2016
Anish Kapoor at Moscow Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center
Coinciding with the Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art, the Moscow Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center presents “My Red Homeland,” an exhibition of sculptures by Anish Kapoor. The British artist’s first solo show in Russia is slated to include works made from pigment steel and wax which epitomize the artist’s oeuvre.
“Anish Kapoor. My Red Homeland” will be on view from September 22, 2015 – January 17, 2016
Omer Fast at Jeu de Paume
The exhibition organized by Jeu de Paume presents three video installations alongside site-specific new productions. Fast’s renowned 5,000 Feet is the Best ( 2011) questions the military strategies of indirect warfare and the morals of new forms of surveillance employing drones. (Lorena Muñoz-Alonso)
“Omar Fast: Present Continuous” will be on view from October 20, 2015 – January 24, 2016.
“Co-workers: Network as artist” at Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris
Based on the concept of the “Internet of Things”, the exhibitions gathers artists whose practices unfold via networks, including Ed Atkins, Trisha Baga, Ian Cheng, Douglas Coupland, Mark Leckey, Aude Pariset, Rachel Rose, Hito Steyerl, and Ryan Trecartin. In case you need any further trendy signifiers, the exhibition design comes courtesy of DIS. A second part of the exhibition will simultaneously take place at the Parisian art space Bétonsalon. (Lorena Muñoz-Alonso)
“Co-workers: Network as artist” will be on view from October 9, 2015 – January 16, 2016.
Wifredo Lam at the Centre Pompidou
The Centre Pompidou is staging an in depth retrospective to the influential Cuban painter Wifredo Lam (1902 – 1982), spanning his career from the 1930s to the 1970s. The exhibition aims to reposition Lam’s work within an international history of modern art, to which he made a key contribution in both Europe and the Americas. Featuring more than 400 works—including paintings, drawings, photographs, reviews, and rare books—the exhibition surveys the artist’s oeuvre chronologically. The retrospective also features La Jungle (1943), one of the artist’s seminal works, which has been loaned by MoMA. After its debut in Paris, the exhibition will tour to Museo Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid, and Tate Modern, London, in 2016. (Lorena Muñoz-Alonso)
“Wifredo Lam” will be on view from September 30, 2015 – February 15, 2016.
Francesca Woodman at Moderna Museet
In the short and intense years of artistic production, before her premature death, Francesca Woodman developed an deeply personal aesthetic language that touches on the history of photography while still her reflecting her own time. Her representations of the body and gender are rich with Surrealist influences, and the theme of transformation is a central motif, for example in one of her strongest and eeriest series, House from 1976, in which she gradually merges with the walls, the torn wallpaper and the open fireplace. “She is deeply personal, and so her themes become universal,” says curator Anna Tellgren. (Hili Perlson)
“Francesca Woodman, On Being an Angel” is on view from September 5 – December 6, 2015
Adrián Villar Rojas at Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo
Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo will present the first solo exhibition in Italy of Adrián Villar Rojas, best known for his ambitious and large scale installation. Born in Argentina in 1980, Villar Rojas has received international acclaim in the last five years thanks to his unique style of sculpture and installation, one of which can be currently seen at the Istanbul Biennial. The exhibition in Turin will feature new, site-specific commissions. (Lorena Muñoz-Alonso)
“Adrián Villar Rojas” will be on view from November 5, 2015 – February 28, 2016.
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