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Felix Gonzalez-Torres

Felix Gonzalez-Torres was born in Guáimaro, Cuba on November 26, 1957. He referred to himself as American. He lived and worked in New York City between 1979 and 1995. Gonzalez-Torres died in Miami on January 6, 1996 from AIDS-related causes. He began his art studies at the University of Puerto Rico before moving to New York City, where he attended the Whitney Independent Study Program, first in 1981 and again in 1983. He received his BFA from Pratt Institute, New York, in 1983 and his MFA from the International Center of Photography and New York University in 1987.

From 1987 to 1991, Gonzalez-Torres was a part of the artist collective Group Material, whose collaborative, politically-informed practice focused on community engagement and activist interventions. In 1988, he had his first one-man exhibitions, at the Rastovski Gallery, New York, INTAR Gallery, New York, and the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York. His earliest billboard work, "Untitled" (1989), was installed at New York's Sheridan Square on the occasion of the twentieth anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion. In 1990, a solo presentation of Gonzalez-Torres's work served as the inaugural exhibition of the Andrea Rosen Gallery, New York.

Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Traveling, a survey of the artist's work, was presented at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC, and the Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago in 1994. In 1995, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, organized an international traveling retrospective of his work. The artist participated in numerous group shows during his lifetime, including early presentations at Artists Space and White Columns in New York (1987 and 1988, respectively), the Whitney Biennial (1991), the Venice Biennale (1993), and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (1995) and the Art Institute of Chicago (1995).

In 1997, the Sprengel Museum Hannover, Germany, organized a traveling posthumous solo exhibition and published a catalogue raisonné of the artist's work. Further solo exhibitions of his work were held at such institutions as The Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide (1998); The Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin (1999-2000); El Museo Nacional de Artes Visuales, Montevideo, Uruguay (2000-2001); Serpentine Gallery, London (2000); Le Consortium, Dijon (2002); and Hamburger Bahnhof, Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin (2006). In 2007, Gonzalez-Torres was selected to represent the United States at the 52nd Venice Biennale.

More recently, in 2010-2011, WIELS Contemporary Art Center, Brussels, organized a six-part traveling retrospective, Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Specific Objects without Specific Form, which was also presented at the Fondation Beyeler, Basel, and Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt. At each institution, Elena Filipovic curated a retrospective version of the exhibition which was reconsidered midway through its run by a collaborating artist-curator: Danh Vo, Carol Bove, and Tino Sehgal, respectively. Further exhibitions devoted to the artist's work have been held at PLATEAU and Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul, South Korea (2012); Metropolitan Arts Centre, Belfast, Northern Ireland (2015); Rockbund Art Museum, Shanghai, China (2016); and Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA) (2021).

 

Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Summer was on view at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Toronto in 2022. Also in 2022, The two-person presentation, Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, was presented at the Bourse de Commerce–Pinault Collection, Paris. 

 

On view at David Zwirner, New York is an exhibition of works by the artist. This is the second solo exhibition of Gonzalez-Torres’s work at David Zwirner since the announcement that the gallery would be joining Andrea Rosen Gallery in co-representing the artist’s estate.

 

Click here to download full CV

Installation view of an exhibition, titled Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, at Bourse de Commerce, Pinault Collection, in Paris, dated 2022.

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, Bourse de Commerce, Pinault Collection, Paris, 2022

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, Bourse de Commerce, Pinault Collection, Paris, 2022

Installation view of an exhibition, titled Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, at Bourse de Commerce, Pinault Collection, in Paris, dated 2022.

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, Bourse de Commerce, Pinault Collection, Paris, 2022

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, Bourse de Commerce, Pinault Collection, Paris, 2022

Installation view of an exhibition, titled Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, at Bourse de Commerce, Pinault Collection, in Paris, dated 2022.

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, Bourse de Commerce, Pinault Collection, Paris, 2022

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, Bourse de Commerce, Pinault Collection, Paris, 2022

Installation view of an exhibition, titled Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, at Bourse de Commerce, Pinault Collection, in Paris, dated 2022.

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, Bourse de Commerce, Pinault Collection, Paris, 2022

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres – Roni Horn, Bourse de Commerce, Pinault Collection, Paris, 2022

April 6–September 26, 2022

This unprecedented exhibition stems from the power, radicalness and the artistic affinities of two major figures of our contemporary age, Roni Horn and Felix Gonzalez-Torres. Developed around four iconic artworks from the Pinault Collection, exhibited for the first time to a French audience –Untitled (For Stockholm) (1992) and Untitled (Blood) (1992) by Felix Gonzalez-Torres and Well and Truly (2009–2010) and a.k.a. (2008–2009) by Roni Horn—this exhibition emphasizes notions of doubling up, duality, complexities within repetition, and identity at work in the artists’ respective artistic practices. 

The exhibition is the latest iteration of the artistic conversation begun in 1991 between Roni Horn and Felix Gonzalez-Torres, which continued until the latter’s passing in 1996. For Gonzalez-Torres, the encounter with Horn’s was a deeply moving experience, and motivated him to write directly to Horn. A fertile creative dialogue thus began between them, with one artwork responding to the other. 

Striving to grasp the inexpressible and immeasurable, the two conceptual artists established radical practices with often minimalistic means that contributed to a redefinition of the exhibition as a medium that included the viewer and had a major influence on an entire generation of younger artists.

Their artworks express a common, uncompromising approach with the same economy of means. Their similarities also lie in their shared political or activist themes: issues of identity, the place of minorities, or the tragedy that is AIDS, a way of resisting the violence of our society and its desire to assign established roles. This exhibition also bears witness to their common passion for language, writing, and poetry.

October 29, 2021–February 13, 2022

With almost 200 preeminent works from painting, photography, drawing, sculpture, installation, and video art, the Bundeskunsthalle presents a comprehensive overview of modern and contemporary art from the important private collection of Erika and Rolf Hoffmann. The Hoffmanns made their first acquisitions as early as the 1960s and embraced direct dialogue and intensive exchange with the artists as the fundamental basis for their decisions. The exhibition provides deep insight into the collection in its individuality, subjectivity, and also privacy, furthering Erika Hoffmann’s description of the works as “family members.”

The dialogic, corresponding and synergetic principle of the collection spans borders and generations and is clearly recognizable through an open and cross-media presentation. The exhibition offers surprising correspondence and reflects on timeless yet fundamental existential and philosophical questions that are still valid in our society today. Concepts such as energy, radicalism, innovation, transience, physicality, or volatility are expressed through the work of artists such as Carla Accardi, Yael Bartana, Christian Boltanski, Monica Bonvicini, Isa Genzken, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Georg Herold, Barbara Kruger, Yayoi Kusama, Ernesto Neto, Julian Rosefeldt, Frank Stella, Wolfgang Tillmans, and Andy Warhol.

 

May 28–August 29, 2021

Palazzo Strozzi presents American Art 1961–2001, a major exhibition taking a new perspective on the history of contemporary art in the United States. The exhibition brought together an outstanding selection of more than eighty works by fifty-three artists including Matthew Barney, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Barbara Kruger, Louise Nevelson, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Mapplethorpe, Bruce Nauman, Claes Oldenburg, Mark Rothko, Cindy Sherman, Kara Walker, Andy Warhol, and many more, exhibited in Florence through a collaboration with the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. Exhibiting many formative works for the first time in Italy, the exhibition examines the most important figures and movements that marked the development of American art from the beginning of the Vietnam War until the 9/11 attack.

Curated by Vincenzo de Bellis (Director, Fairs and Exhibition Platforms, Art Basel) and Arturo Galansino (Director General, Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi), the exhibition takes an in-depth look at the breadth of American artistic production—from pop art to minimalism, from conceptual art to the Pictures Generation—and including more recent artistic developments from the 1990s and 2000s. Paintings, photographs, videos, sculptures, and art installations propose an unprecedented reinterpretation of forty years of history, exploring the role of art as a powerful tool for addressing such topics as consumerism, mass production, feminism and gender identity, racial issues, and the struggle for civil rights.

The era of the Sixties is witnessed through works by masters such as Donald Judd, Bruce Nauman, and John Baldessari, figures who became reference points for subsequent generations of artists to redefine the possibilities of art. Artists of the subsequent generation continued to address such topics as the reframing of the male gaze in the work of Cindy Sherman; the appropriation of mass-media images by artists Richard Prince and Barbara Kruger, the denunciation of the stigma of AIDS in the work of Felix Gonzalez-Torres; or the disquieting narratives of Matthew Barney, whose 1999 video installation Cremaster 2 is shown in an original setting for the first time in Italy.

Felix Gonzalez-Torres, “Untitled” (Perfect Lovers), 1987–90.

Felix Gonzalez-Torres, “Untitled” (Perfect Lovers), 1987–90. Installed in Felix Gonzalez-Torres. Rockbund Art Museum, Shanghai, China, 2016 © Felix Gonzalez-Torres. Courtesy of the Felix Gonzalez-Torres Foundation

March 26–September 19, 2021

Felix Gonzalez-Torres: The Politics of Relation situates Gonzalez-Torres’s work within the postcolonial discourse and the connected histories between Spain and the Americas, especially as these impact present-day questions around memory, authority, freedom, and national identity. A particular emphasis is placed on reading Gonzalez-Torres’s work in relation to Spanish, Latin American, and Caribbean culture, not as a simple, singular biographical narrative, but rather as a way of complicating any essentialist reading of his work through any single idea, theme or identity. The show proposes various interpretations stemming from this line of investigation and also highlights the work’s formative influence on queer aesthetics.

Following the thinking of Martinican writer and philosopher Édouard Glissant, the exhibition emphasizes the idea of the necessity for opacity, rather than either total transparency or instant legibility. The conceptual openness of Gonzalez-Torres’s work parallels Glissant’s position through their shared emphasis on mutability, and through the dynamics as well as the poetics of relation, which could also encompass the politics of relation.

The exhibition is arranged in a series of four rooms focused on discrete sets of concerns found in Gonzalez-Torres’s work. These themes are interrelated across the exhibition, and unfold through the works' presence beyond the museum: together these sites constitute the five “chapters” of the overall exhibition.

 
Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Installation view of "Untitled" (L.A.), 1991

Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Installation view of "Untitled" (L.A.), 1991

The Bass, the de la Cruz Collection, and the Felix Gonzalez-Torres Family Archive collaborate to present a celebration day honoring the personal and artistic legacy of Felix Gonzalez-Torres, in commemoration of the twenty-fifth anniversary of his death in Miami, Florida. Titled What Remains, the virtual celebration featured a series of three conversations joined by a panel of colleagues and scholars with distinct views and perspectives, memorializing the life of Felix Gonzalez-Torres.

Installation view of the exhibition, Félix González-Torres: Summer, at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Toronto, dated 2022.

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Summer, Museum of Contemporary Art, Toronto, 2022

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Summer, Museum of Contemporary Art, Toronto, 2022

Installation view of the exhibition, Félix González-Torres: Summer, at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Toronto, dated 2022.

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Summer, Museum of Contemporary Art, Toronto, 2022

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Summer, Museum of Contemporary Art, Toronto, 2022

Installation view of the exhibition, Félix González-Torres: Summer, at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Toronto, dated 2022.

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Summer, Museum of Contemporary Art, Toronto, 2022

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Summer, Museum of Contemporary Art, Toronto, 2022

Installation view of the exhibition, Félix González-Torres: Summer, at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Toronto, dated 2022.

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Summer, Museum of Contemporary Art, Toronto, 2022

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Summer, Museum of Contemporary Art, Toronto, 2022

Installation view of the exhibition, Félix González-Torres: Summer, at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Toronto, dated 2022.

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Summer, Museum of Contemporary Art, Toronto, 2022

Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Summer, Museum of Contemporary Art, Toronto, 2022

March 10–July 31, 2022


Felix Gonzalez-Torres was an artist, educator, writer, and activist. His practice evolved during the transition from the 1980s to the ’90s, a period remembered for the emergence of the HIV/AIDS health crisis and changing attitudes towards government inaction, medicine, wealth and racial inequalities, war, the urgency of the climate crisis, burgeoning expressions of gender and sexuality, and the fight for freedom of speech and assembly. In just under a decade, before his death from AIDS-related causes, Gonzalez-Torres developed an expansive and influential body of work that brought him and audiences closer to an understanding of the fragility and complexity of being alive. In one moment, everything can be taken away. In another, everything can be restored.


Many of Gonzalez-Torres’s artworks take the form of mass-produced items—light strings, piles of candy, beaded curtains, stacks of paper, and signage—that can be locally sourced and adapted to any location. By choosing processes that removed his hand, Gonzalez-Torres ensured that the core of his work was stable enough to be sustained by and benefit from ongoing transformation. While the artworks are almost always designated “Untitled,” many of the titles also include parentheticals, imbuing the captions with opportunities for individual reflection. Even during his lifetime, Gonzalez-Torres chose to impart the rights and responsibilities of making decisions about his artwork to owners, authorized exhibitors, and the public, ensuring that each artwork’s significance varies with time, composition, geography, and experience.


This curated arrangement of artworks, titled Summer, establishes local resonances and generates new reflections on our relationship to the landscape, what the artist once alluded to as being not only the natural environment but also our “cultural concerns, political realities, and civic issues.” It embraces the spirit of transformation, the beauty and disquiet of being in one set of circumstances while longing for others. As the seasons change in Toronto, so too will the exhibition. When daylight extends and temperatures rise, the artworks will morph and migrate to new locations in the museum; consequently, the exhibition title will shift from Summer to Winter.


This project is curated by MOCA adjunct curator Rui Mateus Amaral. Summer is Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s first solo exhibition in Canada.

A detail from one of Felix Gonzalez-Torres's Photostat works.

“Untitled” (1988), 1988 by Felix Gonzalez-Torres, published in Photostats, Siglio, 2020. Copyright Felix Gonzalez-Torres. Courtesy Felix Gonzalez-Torres Foundation.

An artist whose beautiful, restrained and often mutable works are abundant in compelling contradictions, Felix Gonzalez-Torres (1957−1996) was committed to a democratic form of art informed as much by aesthetic and conceptual concerns as by politics. His work eschews the polemical and didactic, while challenging authority and our obeisance to it, dissolving the delineations between public and private, and inviting the viewer to collaborate and complete works with her own inferences, point of view, imagination, and actions.

Made at the height of the AIDS crisis, in a pre-internet era, the photostats—a series of fixed works with white serif text on black fields framed behind glass to create a reflective surface—are profoundly suggestive lists of political, cultural, and historical references. These works disrupt linear time, the seemingly causal relationships of chronology, and hierarchies of information as they ask how we receive and prioritize information, how we remember and forget, and how we continuously create new meaning. The photostats have a deep kinship with poetry in their use of specificity and ambiguity, operating as open fields: each juxtaposition and its oblique friction illuminates connections and disconnections.

The photostats also recall the screen—the television, and now the computer and phone—in which information is furiously delivered, and we are challenged to parse substance from surface, what we choose to assimilate from what we choose to reject. In the gallery, the glass surface of the framed photostats brings the viewer into an intimate relationship with the work as she may literally see herself in it—reflecting, too, her own assumptions. Now, as we find ourselves thirty years later, in a global pandemic, with a national reckoning in the face of enduring protests against police brutality and racial injustice, there is more to see of ourselves in the photostats and their uncanny multiplicity: layers of history with which we are only beginning to grapple as a society, grief in the wake of devastating loss, and the possibility of reinvention and regeneration.

Intended as discrete space to closely read the photostats with sustained attention, this elegant, clothbound volume opens from both sides: on one side, the framed photostats are reproduced as objects as one might encounter them in a gallery; on the other, white texts appear on full-bleed black fields to be read as writing. Its intimate size and its attention to the book as a physical object create a new way to experience the photostats.

In between the two sides, there are gorgeous and thought-provoking writings by poets Mónica de la Torre and Ann Lauterbach that do not explicate the work but instead enter it. Lauterbach penetrates the atmosphere of the photostats, contemplating mourning and memory while invoking Gonzalez-Torres’s spirit of generosity. De la Torre mines Gonzalez-Torres’s dates and references in her constraint-based essay, tracing time from past to present, while keenly attentive to the impossibility of linearity. Both demonstrate the richness of the work and its potential to inspire multiple readings.

PHOTOSTATS
FELIX GONZALEZ-TORRES

September 8–September 17, 2020

The black-and-white photograph "Untitled", (1992) by Felix Gonzalez-Torres, in which a figure’s ghostly shadow is captured on a billowing curtain, is part of the artist’s billboard series. The work requires the owner to produce the image as a public poster. Regardless of how often it is printed, it is always unique. In the context of Munich’s Various Others project, the Sammlung Goetz presented "Untitled", (1992) on five billboards around the city and in front of its own exhibition building in Munich.

In his work, Felix Gonzalez-Torres explored death and transience in a poetic manner and used art as a way to process his own personal experiences, including the loss of his life partner to AIDS and the death of his own father. Gonzalez-Torres himself contracted HIV and died at the age of 38.

The reciprocal permeation of the private and public realms is characteristic of the artist’s work. This approach is evident above all in his poster campaigns in urban spaces, a series he began in 1991, the year his partner died of AIDS; in tribute, Gonzalez-Torres presented a photograph of the couple’s unmade bed on twenty-four giant billboards throughout New York City.

Installation views of Felix Gonzalez-Torres's work, titled "Untitled" (Fortune Cookie Corner), dated 1990.

Installation views, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, "Untitled" (Fortune Cookie Corner), 1990

“In an era of social distancing, can a fortune cookie help bring us together? That question, and several others, are at the core of a new exhibition by Andrea Rosen Gallery and David Zwirner of the late artist Felix Gonzalez-Torres.

For the show, which will run from May 25 to July 5, Rosen and Zwirner will present Gonzalez-Torres’s 1990 “Untitled” (Fortune Cookie Corner), a piece consisting of an endless pile of fortune cookies that can be taken away and consumed by viewers. “We are all thinking about virtual experiences and how disconnected we all feel virtually, and yet Felix’s work is something that can physically happen,” dealer Andrea Rosen, who curated the exhibition, told ARTnews. ‘It can be a physical experience that can connect us all.’”

Read the full article in Artnet news


February 7–August 2, 2020

Experiences of loss grief, and change harbor a disturbing potential that is difficult to put into words and nearly impossible to depict. This exhibition brings together contemporary artworks by international artists that revolve around these experiences. Whether the loss of a loved one through separation or death, departing from cherished ideals and visions, or being deprived of one’s home and familiar surroundings—we all have to grapple with painful incidences of disappointment, failure, and irreversible change at some point in our lives. Although these experiences affect each of us differently, the way we cope with, describe and assess them also depends to a great extent on our cultural, social, and political environment.


How do artists today picture leave-taking, grief, loss, and change? What role is played by traditional formulas for expressing pathos and by universally legible symbols? And what does the way we deal with grief tell us about our present-day world?

In the pictures, sculptures, videos, photographs, installations, slide projections, and sound pieces presented, some thirty international artists from fifteen countries engage with the theme of loss as a distressing experience of existential uncertainty that irrevocably changes the course of events. The complexity of the theme is illustrated in chapters such as “Melancholy and Mourning,” “Grief and Gender,” ”Collective Grief,” “Mourning and Rebellion,” “Forms of Leave-Taking,” and “The Inability to Grieve.”

Featured artists: Bas Jan Ader, Kudjoe Affutu, Khaled Barakeh, Christian Boltanski, Helen Cammock, Anne Collier, Johannes Esper, Sibylle Fendt, Seiichi Furuya, Paul Fusco, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Aslan Ġoisum, Ragnar Kjartansson, Maria Lassnig, Jennifer Loeber, Ataa Oko, Adrian Paci, Philippe Parreno, Susan Philipsz, Greta Rauer, Willem de Rooij, Michael Sailstorfer, Thomas Schütte, Dread Scott, Rein Jelle Terpstra, Rosemarie Trockel, Tilman Walther, and Andy Warhol.

 

December 4, 2019–November 18, 2020

The Rubell Museum announced that its new campus will open on December 4, 2019, with a museum-wide installation of works that chronicle key artists, moments, and movements in vital arts centers over the past fifty years, from the East Village to Beijing, Los Angeles to Leipzig, and São Paulo to Tokyo. The inaugural exhibition encompasses more than 300 works by 100 artists, providing one of the most far-ranging museum exhibitions of contemporary art ever presented. Drawn entirely from their expansive collection of over 7,200 works by more than 1,000 artists, the exhibition features defining and seminal works by artists whom the Rubells championed as they were first emerging (often becoming the first collectors to acquire their work) and those who had been overlooked. The new Rubell Museum is located in the Allapattah neighborhood of Miami, less than a mile from its original home in Wynwood. The new space is closer to downtown and readily accessible via public transportation. 

Retracing the Rubells’ journeys to both major and emerging art centers around the world, the inaugural exhibition includes surveys of artists working in proximity to one another and deep dives into individual careers, tracing influences and revealing parallels among contemporaries and across generations.

Featured artists: Nina Chanel Abney  /  Ai Weiwei  /  Pawel Althamer  /  Carl Andre  /  Kathryn Andrews  /  John Baldessari  /  Hernan Bas  /  Jean-Michel Basquiat  /  Frank Benson  /  Ross Bleckner  /  Christian Boltanski  /  Michaël Borremans  /  David Brooks  /  Cecily Brown  /  Rafal Bujnowski  /  André Butzer  /  Miriam Cahn  /  Maurizio Cattelan  /  Jonathan Lyndon Chase  /  Francesco Clemente  /  Robert Colescott  /  George Condo  /  Cui Jie  /  Aaron Curry  /  Walter Dahn  /  Karon Davis  /  Noah Davis  /  Lucy Dodd  /  Marlene Dumas  /  Janiva Ellis  /  Naomi Fisher  /  Dan Flavin  /  Llyn Foulkes  /  Cy Gavin  /  Isa Genzken  /  Gilbert & George  /  Robert Gober  /  Felix Gonzalez-Torres  /  Wade Guyton  /  Peter Halley  /  Mark Handforth  /  Keith Haring  /  Barkley L. Hendricks  /  Secundino Hernandez  / Georg Herold  /  He Xiangyu  /  Damien Hirst  /  Jenny Holzer  /  Andy Hope 1930  /  Thomas Houseago  /  Huang Yong Ping  /  Rashid Johnson  /  Deborah Kass  /  William Kentridge  /  Mike Kelley  /  Anselm Kiefer  /  Josh Kline  /  Jeff Koons  /  Barbara Kruger  /  Yayoi Kusama  /  Jim Lambie  /  Louise Lawler  /  Sherrie Levine  /  Li Songsong  /  Glenn Ligon  /  Liu Wei  /  Robert Longo  /  Nate Lowman  /  Sarah Lucas  /  Kerry James Marshall  /  Paul McCarthy  /  Adam McEwen  /  John Miller  /  Juan Muñoz  /  Takashi Murakami  /  Oscar Murillo  /  Yoshitomo Nara  /  Paulo Nazareth  /  Cady Noland  /  Catherine Opie  /  Nicolas Party  /  Celia Paul  /  Solange Pessoa  /  Raymond Pettibon  /  Elizabeth Peyton  /  Rudolf Polanszky  /  Seth Price  /  Richard Prince  /  Qiu Zhijie  /  Neo Rauch  /  Charles Ray  /  Sterling Ruby  /  David Salle  /  Wilhelm Sasnal  /  Julian Schnabel  /  Thomas Schütte  /  Dana Schutz  /  Tschabalala Self  /  Nancy Shaver  /  Jim Shaw  /  Cindy Sherman  /  Gary Simmons  /  Vaughn Spann  /  Haim Steinbach  /  Philip Taaffe  /  Aya Takano  /  Henry Taylor  /  Hank Willis Thomas  /  Mickalene Thomas  /  Ryan Trecartin  /  Rosemarie Trockel  /  Luc Tuymans  /  Kaari Upson  /  Meyer Vaisman  /  Kara Walker  /  Kelley Walker  /  Wang Xingwei  /  Mary Weatherford  /  Carrie Mae Weems  /  Paloma Varga Weisz  /  Wang Xingwei  /  Andro Wekua  /  Kehinde Wiley  /  Jordan Wolfson  /  Christopher Wool  /  Purvis Young  /  Lisa Yuskavage  /  Zhang Huan  /  Zhu Jinshi  /  Allison Zuckerman

 

June 1–30, 2019

This June, New York is the host city for WorldPride—an international celebration of the LGBTQIA+ community—in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising. The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum is excited to participate with special programming, commemorative merchandise, and a social media spotlight of LGBTQIA+ artists in the Guggenheim’s collection.

The Guggenheim will exhibit Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s Untitled (1991), a broadsheet iteration of his seminal billboard Untitled (1989). The billboard was first presented in 1989 by Public Art Fund on the 20th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising and installed across from the historic Stonewall Inn bar in Greenwich Village. It will return to its original location on June 4. The broadsheet can be found in the Guggenheim’s Tower Level 2 gallery throughout the month of June.

Installation view of the untitled exhibition with work by Felix Gonzalez-Torres, at David Zwirner in New York, dated 2017.

November 3, 2018–May 12, 2019

“Untitled” (Chemo) (1991), a beaded curtain work by Felix Gonzalez-Torres, is included in Groundings at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) Chicago. Organized by Grace Deveney, MCA assistant curator, and Tara Aisha Willis, MCA associate curator of performance, the exhibition explores movement through a combination of artists’ residencies—allowing performers to use the gallery space for live rehearsals and performances—and existing works.

“Gonzalez-Torres choreographed for the viewer, suggesting paths to travel and actions to take,” Carol Bove writes in Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Specific Objects Without Specific Form, a book documenting the retrospective curated by Elena Filipovic with Bove, Tino Sehgal, and Danh Vo  in 2010–2011, which included “Untitled” (Chemo). "The show was designed to complicate viewing," she continues, "so the viewer had to think about how to be a viewer at each stage: remove a poster, look at a traditional photograph, pass through a curtain, and so on. But it was also designed to circumvent or disrupt thinking through the use of elegance, beauty, touch, sexual desire, and candy."

“Untitled” (Chemo) was presented at David Zwirner in New York in 2017 as part of the gallery’s first exhibition of the artist’s influential work.

Image: Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, David Zwirner, New York, 2017

Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Forbidden Colors, 1988, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles

Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Forbidden Colors, 1988, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles

June 4, 2017–Apr 1, 2018

The Underground Museum 
presents Artists of Color, the third exhibition curated by the late artist Noah Davis, showcasing color-driven work in the form of monochrome, hard-edge, and color field painting, as well as immersive installations that focus on acts of visual perception, a fundamental building block of aesthetic experience. Varied and vibrant hues made by paint, plexiglass, fluorescent tubes, and pigment sculptures offer an opportunity to reflect on the various ways that color has been defined and deployed by different time periods and cultures.


On view are some of the most well-known names in contemporary art, including Josef Albers, Michael Asher, Jo Baer, Dan Flavin, Carmen Herrera, Ellsworth Kelly, Jennie C. Jones, and Donald Judd, among others. Key artworks include Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s Forbidden Colors (1988), a monochrome triptych in the colors of the Palestinian flag, and an adaptation of Diana Thater’s RGB Windows for MOCA (2001) presented in The Underground Museum’s Purple Garden. Additional highlights added posthumously to Noah Davis’s original artist list are Davis’s own 2004 (1) (2008), from his Swing State series created during President Obama’s first election campaign, and a West Coast exhibition debut for the 102-year-old painter, Carmen Herrera.

A special talk and book event to celebrate the release of Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Specific Objects Without Specific Form was held at the Fondation Beyeler in Basel on June 15, 2017. Elena Filipovic and Tino Sehgal were present in conversation about Gonzalez-Torres's work, the structure of the exhibition, and the publication.

Felix Gonzalez-Torres: Specific Objects Without Specific Form documents the groundbreaking retrospective curated by Elena Filipovic with the artists Danh Vo, Carol Bove, and Tino Sehgal that traveled to Wiels Contemporary Art Centre in Brussels, Fondation Beyeler in Basel, and MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt in 2010 and 2011.

Organized by Wiels Contemporary Art Centre in collaboration with the Felix Gonzalez-Torres Foundation, the exhibition offered visitors the possibility of finding a new interpretation of Gonzalez-Torres's work with each visit. Following the installation of a retrospective version of the exhibition at each institution by Elena Filipovic, an artist whose practice has been informed by Gonzalez-Torres's work was invited to entirely re-install the show halfway through its duration. Danh Vo's version was presented at Wiels, Carol Bove's at the Fondation Beyeler, and Tino Sehgal's at the Museum für Moderne Kunst. Through this structure, the exhibition evolved into several different forms—none being the definitive one.

The publication has been years in the making as Elena Filipovic and the Felix Gonzalez-Torres Foundation worked together to find the best ways to present the complexities and nuances of the exhibition. The book includes installation views of each version of the show and an illustrated checklist with images of the artworks in every instance of their installation. The structure of the publication allows the reader to see the immensely different ways the artworks can be installed, as well as how context acted on and through each piece during the cycle of exhibitions.

May 12 – June 29, 2017

Felix Gonzalez-Torres's paper stack work “Untitled” (Passport) (1991) was installed at The David Ireland House as part of the exhibition Box of Angels. David Ireland (1930-2009) was an artist and architect whose best-known work is his own house at 500 Capp Street in San Francisco—at once an environmental artwork, social sculpture, and his residence for 30 years. The house is now a venue for exhibitions and for the preservation of his work.

Installed in the guest bedroom of the house, “Untitled” (Passport) recalls The Savage Garden at Fundacion 'la Caixa' in Madrid, a group exhibition in 1991 which featured works by both Ireland and Gonzalez-Torres.

Works by Felix Gonzalez-Torres were part of two exhibitions in New York.

At the Brooklyn Museum, Infinite Bluewas an exhibition of diverse works that variously reference blue—what the museum calls, "a fascinating strand of visual poetry running from ancient times to the present day." Hanging in a series of doorways inside the museum lobby was Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s last "curtain" work, "Untitled" (Water) (1995), made from strands of blue, silver, and translucent plastic beads. The show was part of A Year of Yes: Reimagining Feminism at the Brooklyn Museum, a yearlong series of ten exhibitions celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art.

The work "Untitled" (Public Opinion) (1991) was included in … circle through New York, a project in which selected artworks rotated among six public locations in the city from March 1 through August 30. Situated around an imaginary circle drawn through Harlem, the South Bronx, Queens, and Manhattan's Upper East Side, the exhibition sites included a pet shop, a TV network, an academic research institute, the Guggenheim, and a church. "Untitled" (Public Opinion) takes the form of spill of cellophane wrapped black rod licorice candies and is displayed as either a corner or a floor piece; as the work traveled around the different locations, it was installed by a team of museum professionals in response to the architecture of each site. This was the first time "Untitled" (Public Opinion) has been exhibited outside the context of a museum or gallery. ...circle through New York was commissioned as part of Guggenheim Social Practice, an initiative made possible by a grant from the Edmond de Rothschild Foundations.

Installation view of the exhibition, Felix Gonzalez-Torres at the Rockbund Art Museum in Shanghai, dated 2016.

In September 2016, the Rockbund Art Museum in Shanghai presented the first solo exhibition of work by Felix Gonzalez-Torres in China. Curated by the Director of the Rockbund Art Museum Larys Frogier and the museum’s Senior Curator Li Qi, Felix Gonzalez-Torres included over 40 works dating from 1987 to 1995. The works were selected from 30 institutions and collections around the world.

Above: Installation view of Felix Gonzalez-Torres at Rockbund Art Museum (2016)

Installation view of the untitled exhibition with work by Felix Gonzalez-Torres, at David Zwirner in New York, dated 2017.

"For the entire month of June, the Public Art Fund will present Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s first billboard, which was unveiled in 1989 in the West Village in New York. The work will be situated in its original location, on the corner of Seventh Avenue and Christopher Street, above Village Cigars and steps away from the Stonewall Inn.

The organization worked with Gonzalez-Torres to create the work to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion, which is often cited as a catalyst of the Gay Liberation movement. Now, 30 years later, on the eve of the event’s 50th anniversary at the end of June, the Public Art Fund has collaborated with the Felix Gonzalez-Torres Foundation, the artist died of AIDS-related causes in 1996 at 38, and Google, which usually advertises in the billboard space.

[...]

The billboard is mostly black, save for two lines of white text, and relies on the artist’s the artist’s specific strategy of presenting nonlinear dates and events as a means to collapse the notion of history as something chronological. The text for the billboard reads: ‘People With AIDS Coalition 1985 Police Harassment 1969 Oscar Wilde 1895 Supreme Court 1986 Harvey Milk 1977 March on Washington 1987 Stonewall Rebellion 1969.’"

Read the full article in ARTnews

On the occasion of this project, Public Art Fund is holding a panel discussion on public art and activism on Monday, June 2, 2019. The panel will include Joy Episalla, artist and founding member of the queer women artists’ collective fierce pussy, Avram Finkelstein, co-founder of the collective Silence=Death Project, which created the "Silence=Death" AIDS awareness campaign to combat institutional silence surrounding homophobia and HIV/AIDS, and film director, activist, and author Paola Mendoza, co-founder and artistic director of the first Women's March on Washington.

Image: Installation view, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, "Untitled", 1989, Sheridan Square, New York, 2019

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