von Bartha at Art Basel June 15 – 18 / 2017

From 15 – 18 June 2017, von Bartha will participate at Art Basel 2017, exhibiting works by contemporary and modern artists from the gallery’s roster and beyond. Drawing on von Bartha’s unique history, the booth creates a dialogue between generations. Works by six contemporary artists will be exhibited with three modern artists: Andrew Bick (UK, 1963), Imi Knoebel (Germany, 1940), Felipe Mujica (Chile, 1974), Superflex (Denmark, formed 1993), Landon Metz (US, 1985) and Sarah Oppenheimer (US, 1972), show alongside Adolf Luther (Germany, 1912–1990), Jean Tinguely (Switzerland, 1925–1991) and Sophie Taeuber-Arp (Switzerland, 1889–1943).

Motion plays a significant role in von Bartha’s display. The gallery will present a kinetic wall object by Jean Tinguely from the Méta Malevich series of 1954, which consists of a wooden box with geometric rotating shapes. Each element turns at opposing rates and changes direction, creating a permanent state of metamorphoses. Exhibited alongside Tinguely’s work is a glass object by Adolf Luther, one of the foremost representatives of kinetic and optical sculpture, who from the late 1950s dedicated himself to investigating light and its energetic-optical properties.

Kinetic sculptures by Sarah Oppenheimer are presented on a plinth, encouraging direct interaction with the viewer. Examining our sensory experience of space, this works are characterising an integral element of the artist’s practice. The sculptural pieces are presented alongside studies on paper, which explore Oppenheimer’s working method.

Alongside Oppenheimer,  two-dimensional fabric panels by the Chilean artist Felipe Mujica are hanging from the ceiling; made using cotton and thread, the lightweight panels are directly affected by circulating air, causing them to rotate. Felipe Mujica will be the subject of a solo exhibition at von Bartha’s S-chanf space from 1 August – 9 September 2017.

If value then copy, a triptych of three identical paintings by the Copenhagen-based art collective SUPERFLEX, is also exhibited. Renowned for their large-scale and playful installations, which critique commercialisation and globalisation, the artists powerfully re-examine the boundaries of art practice. SUPERFLEX were recently selected for the latest commission in Tate Modern’s prestigious Turbine Hall in October 2017.

New York-based artist Landon Metz represents the latest addition to von Bartha’s roster of artists. Metz’s visual dynamism is achieved through the repetition of the same biomorphic shapes in a sequence. His paintings, composed by spreading thin washes of paint to create various degrees of colouristic saturations, are shown by von Bartha next to those of Imi Knoebel, a leading German painter who similarly explored colour saturation, particularly within his irregular Masonite-based works.

An Earlier work on display includes an oil painting by Sophie Taeuber-Arp from 1928, which is exhibited alongside paintings by the contemporary artist Andrew Bick. Part of the Paris-based artistic movement Cercle et Carré (Circle and Square), Taeuber-Arp is known for her overlapping, geometric compositions which play with form and colour. In a similar vein, Bick’s structural, abstract and multi-layered paintings amalgamate drawing and painting, line and plane, transparency and opacity, to form multifaceted and inscrutable works which play with our perceptions of form.