Two New York Shows Examine Marcel Broodthaers’s Writing and Artist Books

The shows reveal the poet in Broodthaers.

Marcel Broodthaers, Signatures, (1971) Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery
Marcel Broodthaers, Signatures, (1971) Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery
MB 2016 install 08

Installation shot of Écriture
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

Before diving into an expansive art practice that would catapult him into the post-war constellation, Marcel Broodthaers was engaged in a fervent literary practice that some argue endured the test of time. A new show “Marcel Broodthaers: Écriture at the Michael Werner’s New York gallery aims to unearth the influence of writing on the Belgian artist’s work, an influence that persisted throughout his artistic career.

“It’s like a little bit of a focus in a sense,” gallery director Gordon VeneKlasen told artnet News in a phone conversation. “The idea of the show is about Broodthaers and writing, and how language, in a sense, through a group of key works, plays a big part in the artist’s work. He is an artist we represented while he was alive, and we’ve worked with his estate for fifty years now. It made sense to put together a show.”

Marcel Broodthaers, <em>Tous les livres - Vingt ans après</em> (1969)<br />Photo: Courtesy of Kasmin gallery

Marcel Broodthaers, Tous les livres – Vingt ans après (1969)
Photo: Courtesy of Kasmin gallery

Alternatively, Paul Kasmin gallery will be hosting a Marcel Broodthaers show of their own beginning March 3. The exhibition, titled “Complete Editions and Other Works,” brings together the complete set of his 26 editioned prints from 1964-1975 and 20 of his artist books from 1957-1975.

Both shows runs concurrent with his full-bodied retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art, serving as a welcome companion show of film, collage, sculpture, and drawing that collectively work towards a singular direction.

Here’s a preview of the works on display at Michael Werner Gallery:

Marcel Broodthaers, <em>MB MB MB</em>, (1968)<br>Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

Marcel Broodthaers, MB MB MB, (1968)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

 

MBG 4082-13 film

Marcel Broodthaers, Le Corbeau et le Renard, (1967)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

 

MB 23 w_0

Marcel Broodthaers, Dites Partout Que Je L’Ai Dit, (1974)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

 

MB 90

Marcel Broodthaers, Boot and photographic canvas, (1968)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

 

MB 91

Marcel Broodthaers, Parle Ecrit Copie, (1972-73)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

 

MB 92

Marcel Broodthaers, L’objet écrit (La bouteille de lait), (1967)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

 

MB 5-B

Marcel Broodthaers, Les très riches heures du Duc de Berry, (1974)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

 

MB 29 w

Marcel Broodthaers, Les très riches heures du Duc de Berry, (1974)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

 

MB 82 - MB 84

Marcel Broodthaers, Fume, (1972)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

 

MB 88

Marcel Broodthaers, Je te il nous vous, (1974)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

 

MB 94 single frame

Marcel Broodthaers, La pluie (Projet pour un texte), (1969)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

 

MB 93

Marcel Broodthaers, Signatures, (1971)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

 

MBZ 12

Marcel Broodthaers, Untitled, (1970-71)
Photo: Courtesy of the Michael Werner Gallery

The show opened in January of this year and runs through March 26.


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