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Franz West
Upcoming Museum Exhibition: Franz West
Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris

September 2018

The Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris will present the first posthumous retrospective of the work of Franz West. Curated by Christine Macel, Chief Curator at the Centre Georges Pompidou and Mark Godfrey, Senior Curator at Tate Modern, the exhibition will span West's influential career and draws on loans of major works from institutions including the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Ludwig Museum in Cologne. On view will be works dating from the 1970s onwards, including early drawings and works on paper that have rarely been presented publicly, the papier mâché sculptures of the 1980s, large-scale installations created in the 1990s, and the open-air sculptures of the 2000s. The exhibition will open in September 2018.

The Estate of Franz West is Now Represented by David Zwirner
January 8, 2018
Press Release

(New York, London, & Hong Kong) David Zwirner is pleased to announce that the gallery now represents the estate of Austrian artist Franz West (1947–2012). The gallery represented West during the artist’s lifetime from 1993 to 2000, and his solo presentation Investigations of American Art was David Zwirner’s inaugural exhibition in 1993. On the occasion of the gallery’s twenty-fifth anniversary, work by the artist will be included in the exhibition David Zwirner: 25 Years, opening across the gallery’s Chelsea spaces in New York in January 2018.

As stated by David Zwirner, "Franz West is one of the great sculptors of the twentieth century, and certainly one of the most innovative and influential artists of his time. I opened my gallery with Franz West’s work in a small space on Greene Street, and I am incredibly honored, twenty-five years later, to represent his estate. We are looking forward to working closely with the Centre Georges Pompidou for the highly-anticipated traveling retrospective they are organizing of the artist’s work."

Emerging in the early 1970s, West developed a singular aesthetic that engaged equally high and low reference points and often privileged social interaction as an intrinsic component of his work. While he was known primarily as a sculptor, his body of work incorporated drawing, collage, video, furniture, and installation, using papier-mâché, furniture, cardboard, plaster, found imagery, and other diverse materials. By playfully manipulating everyday materials and imagery in novel ways, he created objects that serve to redefine art as a social experience, calling attention to the way in which art is presented to the public, and how viewers interact with works of art and with each other.

Franz West: Where Is My Eight?
Museum moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien, Vienna

In 2013, the Museum moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien (MUMOK) in Vienna presented Franz West: Where Is My Eight? (Wo ist mein Achter?). This was the second major exhibition of the artist’s work at the museum in his native city of Vienna following Franz West: Proforma, a midcareer survey in 1996. Both exhibitions were curated by Eva Badura-Triska.

Where Is My Eight? included some 150 works based on a preliminary selection drawn up by the artist before his death in 2012. The show focused on the Kombi-Werke (Combi-Works), in which West would combine existing works to create new installations; also included were individual pieces drawn from throughout the artist’s career, for example his Passstücke (Adaptives), furniture, sculptures, videos, works on paper, and pieces created in cooperation with other artists. As Faye Hirsch wrote in an extended article for Art in America, "The playfulness and wit that characterized West’s art throughout his career were much in evidence. . . . Walking through the show, one is struck as much by the work’s connection to Brancusi and Giacometti as to the anti-art impulses of Duchamp and Fluxus."

Versions of the exhibition were subsequently presented at the Museum für Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt (2013) and the Hepworth Wakefield in England (2014), where West’s work was placed in dialogue with sculptures by the late Barbara Hepworth. "Playfully nestled alongside the elegant, anthropomorphic curves of Barbara Hepworth’s plaster prototypes," Louisa Elderton wrote in a review for Flash Art, "West’s Das Geraune (Murmuring) (1988) was veritably buzzing with energized textural surfaces and peep holes for the viewer’s eyes only."

The exhibition was accompanied by a publication with texts by Eva Badura-Triska, Klaus Goerner, Georg Grooelle, Peter Keicher, and Andreas Reiter-Raabe.

Franz West, To Build a House You Start with the Roof: Work, 1972–2008
The Baltimore Museum of Art; traveled to Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Organized by The Baltimore Museum of Art, Franz West, To Build a House You Start with the Roof: Work, 1972–2008 surveyed nearly forty years of work by the artist. The exhibition showcased Franz West’s dynamic range of work, from his interactive Passstücke (Adaptives) of the 1970s to large-scale outdoor sculptures begun in the mid-1990s made from aluminum and painted in bright colors. In the catalogue accompanying the show, the curator Darsie Alexander recalls how "an exhibition [of West’s work] at David Zwirner, New York, in the mid-1990s kindled a spark that has ignited into this exhibition."

On the occasion of the exhibition, West produced a new outdoor sculpture, The Ego and the Id (2008). As Peter Schjeldahl wrote in The New Yorker, "West’s recent abstract, painted-aluminum sculptures . . . may be the most energetic and affable art for public spaces since Alexander Calder. . . . A new, colossal piece, created for Baltimore, is West’s strongest yet. The Ego and the Id, in two parts, deploys twisting, soaring loops in various toothsome colors, and sprouts stools for sitting."

Opening on Saturday, October 26, the gallery will present an exhibition by the Austrian artist Franz West. This will be the artist's third exhibition at David Zwirner.


Franz West, who is now widely considered to be one of Europe's most important contemporary sculptors, has been showing steadily since the mid 1970s. Recently his works have reached a large international audience at "Documenta IX" in Kassel and at the 1995 Carnegie International in Pittsburgh. A comprehensive mid-career survey exhibition traveled from the Museum moderner Kunst, Vienna, to the Kunsthalle Basel; and is currently at the Rijksmuseum Kröller Müller in the Netherlands. In 1997, the artist will exhibit new works at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, as well as at the Museum of Modern Art here in New York.


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49 5/8 x 42 7/8 x 29 1/8 inches (126 x 108.9 x 74 cm)
Acrylic, epoxy resin, papier-mâché, wood, and plastic bucket
Images format 
Images display 
Grey display
Front title 



Zwirner & Wirth is pleased to present an exhibition of Outdoor Sculpture at David Zwirner's 519 West 19th Street gallery space. The works on view will include a selection of works spanning the years 1969 to 2006 by Carl Andre, Mark di Suvero, Robert Gober, Sol LeWitt, John McCracken, and Franz West.


The works on view will explore the development of sculptural concerns that were uniquely addressed by these artists, showing how traditional, monumental sculpture was transformed to include work that expanded the relationship of sculpture to the space of the viewer. By the 1960s, the notion of sculpture as a static, pedestal-based medium that idealized and monumentalized its subject matter was radically extended to include works that addressed their physical and temporal surroundings. These concerns would continue to be developed by a range of artists over the course of the pursuant decades and, moreover, would be examined within the broader context of the outdoors.


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Zwirner & Wirth is pleased to present an exhibition of work from the 1990s by Austrian artist Franz West. Considered one of Europe's most influential living artists, West is known for work that has played a critical role in redefining the possibilities of sculpture and the ways that art is experienced.

Since the 1970s, West has experimented with a variety of media and genres. While he is known primarily as a sculptor, his work has incorporated drawing, collage, video, and installation, using papier-mâché, furniture, cardboard, plaster, found imagery, and other diverse materials to create not only a singular aesthetic, but also a conceptually coherent oeuvre that calls artistic and societal conventions into question. By playfully manipulating everyday materials and imagery in novel ways, he creates objects that serve to redefine art as a social experience.


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For more information about available works contact


David Zwirner is pleased to present Folk Devil, a group exhibition curated by Rodolphe von Hofmannsthal in the gallery's 525 and 533 West 19th Street spaces in New York. It borrows its title from sociologist Stanley Cohen's 1972 study Folk Devils and Moral Panics, which looked at modern society's deep-rooted fear of subcultures and the morally aberrant. More specifically, "folk devil" was Cohen's description of the British media's hostile reaction towards youth groups who clashed on the beaches of British seaside towns on summer bank holidays in the early 1960s.


Bringing together a diverse group of artists, Folk Devil presents a comment on the tendency to create artificial connections between individuals with different backgrounds and no inherent commonality. It also contains a self-referential statement on the idea of "free rides," a term used in Cohen's essay to denote preventative actions by the police, who would pick up random groups of youths in the seaside towns and drive them to locations too far for them to return.


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For more information about available works contact


Franz West, who is now widely considered to be one of Europe's most important contemporary sculptors, has been showing steadily since the mid 1970s. This exhibition brings together a large group of sculptures, collages and works on paper dating from 1972-1988 which have never before been exhibited in the United States. The group illustrates the richness of West's early production and offers significant insight into the fundamental theories, ideas and practices that still shape West's work today.


In the 1970s, West began to make sculpture which he called Passstücke. The works are essentially papier-mâché, plaster and fiberglass sculptures painted white that often use material from everyday life, such as bottles, broom and paint brush handles and other miscellaneous objects as points of departure. The term Passstücke can loosely be translated as "adaptive". They are meant to relate to the user's body, as they adapt to the body or the body adapts to them. The Passstücke carried or worn by the receiver effect a temporary expansion of the limits of the body; this expansion constantly changes during the interactive process and influences one’s perception of reality and one’s state of mind. The sculptures are intended to be handled and are not meant to be merely contemplated.


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Franz West
Paßstück (Adaptive), 1975
Wood, plaster, and dispersion
19 1/4 x 31 1/2 x 15 3/4 inches (49 x 80 x 40 cm)
Franz West
Paßstück, ca. 1980
Metal, plaster and paint
11.61 x 13.78 x 8.66 inches (29.5 x 35 x 22 cm)
Franz West
Die Welt zerfaellt in Tatsachen (The World Disintegrates into Facts), ca. 1970
Paint and oilstick on magazine ad, mounted on white mat
13 x 10 inches (33 x 25.4 cm)
Franz West
Untitled (Spill), 1977
Paint on magazine ad
10 3/4 x 8 inches (27.3 x 20.3 cm)
Franz West
Namensbild Attila, ca. 1975 - 1985
Newspaper, cardboard and plywood
10 5/8 x 11 13/16 x 2 3/16 inches (27 x 30 x 5.5 cm)
Franz West
Namensbild Fredl, ca. 1975 - 1985
Papier-mâché, cardboard and paint
12 3/16 x 18 11/16 x 2 3/16 inches (31 x 47.5 x 5.5 cm)

David Zwirner is pleased to present an exhibition of work that examines the 1980s through the lens of the Cologne and New York art scenes of the period. Spanning the gallery's exhibition spaces at 525 and 533 West 19th Street and 537 West 20th Street, the exhibition will include Werner Büttner, George Condo, Walter Dahn, Jiri Georg Dokoupil, Peter Fischli/David Weiss, Günther Förg, Robert Gober, Georg Herold, Jenny Holzer, Mike Kelley, Martin Kippenberger, Jeff Koons, Barbara Kruger, Sherrie Levine, Albert Oehlen, Raymond Pettibon, Richard Prince, Cindy Sherman, Rosemarie Trockel, Franz West, and Christopher Wool.


The contemporary art that was created and presented in New York and Cologne during the 1980s shaped a certain creative discourse between artists, curators, and gallerists on both sides of the Atlantic. This exhibition proposes an examination of this dialogue by focusing on the international artists who showed in both New York and Cologne between 1984 and 1989 and the key gallery and museum exhibitions of the period that took place in both cities.


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For more information about available works contact

Jeff Koons
Ushering in Banality, 1988
Polychromed wood
38 x 66 x 31 inches (96.5 x 167.6 x 78.7 cm)
Franz West
Selbiges (The Thing Itself), 1987
Iron, wood, papier-mâché, polyester, and oil paint
65 1/4 x 95 x 11 3/4 inches (165.7 x 241.3 x 29.8 cm)
Raymond Pettibon
No Title (CCCP Sputnik cosmo...), 1990
Acrylic on panel
26 x 24 1/8 inches (66 x 61.3 cm)
Cindy Sherman
Untitled #180, 1987
Set of two (2) chromogenic color prints
Overall: 94 1/4 x 128 1/2 inches (239.4 x 326.4 cm) Each: 94 1/4 x 64 1/4 inches (239.4 x 163.2 cm)
Peter Fischli/David Weiss
Masturbine, 1984
Gelatin silver print
11 7/8 x 15 3/4 inches (30 x 40 cm)
Barbara Kruger
Untitled (I Shop Therefore I Am), 1987
Photographic silkscreen on vinyl
111 5/8 x 113 1/4 inches (283.5 x 287.7 cm)
Sherrie Levine
Untitled (Checks: 6), 1986
Casein and wax on mahogany
24 1/8 x 20 inches (61.3 x 50.8 cm)
Robert Gober
Untitled, 1984-1988
Plaster, wire, lath, wood, and semi-gloss enamel paint
28 x 29 x 24 inches (71.1 x 73.7 x 61 cm)

David Zwirner is pleased to present an exhibition of works from the 1990s by Austrian artist Franz West (1947-2012) at its 537 West 20th Street location.


During this significant decade, the artist's career was solidified through important international exhibitions, and his work moved in innovative new stylistic directions. The gallery will present a number of key sculptures, collages, and installations from this period in an effort to contextualize the evolution of West's singular practice.


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For more information about available works contact

Franz West
Vorm Abendbrot (Before Supper), 1997
Paint, wax, and collage on paper in artist's frame
37 x 52 1/2 inches (94 x 133.4 cm)
Franz West
Divan, 2003
Metal, foam, linen, carpet, and fabric cover
39 x 89 x 32 1/2 inches (99.1 x 226.1 x 82.6 cm)
Franz West
2 to 2 (do too 2 [too do 2 {to do two}])​, 1994
Papier-mâché, paint, gauze, gesso, metal, and plastic with four (4) bookshelf pedestals
Dimensions variable
Franz West
Untitled (Five Years DZ), 1998
Plaster, plastic, metal, gauze, and paint on wood
40 1/4 x 40 1/4 x 5 1/8 inches (102.2 x 102.2 x 13 cm)
Bernhard Riff/Franz West
Still from Paßstücke für Venedig (Adaptives for Venice), 1990
Video; color, silent
Duration: 14:50 minutes
Bernhard Riff
Still from Capri/Capra, 1993
Video; color, silent
Duration: 29:40 minutes

Opening on Friday October 19, the gallery will host an exhibition entitled "I ♥ NY" to benefit the victims of the families of the recent World Trade Center disaster. David Zwirner asked all the artists who the gallery represents to donate one or more works to this exhibition, all proceeds of which will go directly to the Robin Hood Relief Fund. These individual works can be viewed on the following websites: and on


Many members of the art community have responded to the idea of this benefit exhibition, and the initiative has now culminated in a citywide benefit in which many artists and over 130 galleries will participate. This coordinated benefit activity is called "I ♥ NY - Art Benefit", and will take place from October 26th through November 3rd in the over 130 participating galleries throughout the city. Participating galleries will either stage full "I ♥ NY - Art Benefit" exhibitions or, if their main space is not available, exhibit works for the benefit in viewing rooms or office spaces. All pertinent information on participating galleries and artists can be found on the official website of "I ♥ NY - Art Benefit": As with the exhibition at David Zwirner, 100% of the funds raised by the participating galleries will benefit the Robin Hood Relief Fund.


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Zwirner & Wirth is pleased to present Europeans, a summer group show highlighting some of the most important contemporary artists to emerge from Europe in recent years. Included in the exhibition are two significant 1980s series by German photographers Thomas Ruff and Thomas Struth: Ruff's early series of small portraits of friends and acquaintances, and Struth's stark, black and white images of urban European architecture. In addition, the exhibition presents the Wurst series of color photographs by the artists Fischli & Weiss, a whimsically cinematic and consciously ham-fisted narrative in which sausages, cigarette butts, and pickles inhabit a low-budget landscape of transformed household objects.


Rosemarie Trockel is represented by a well-known knit painting which refers to the signature work of Niele Toroni, along with several of her darkly enigmatic works on paper. Also on view are the quirky sculptures and rare tactile collages of Franz West, as well as a unique collaborative floor sculpture by Thomas Schutte and Richard Deacon. Completing the exhibition are two poetically disquieting paintings, Drops and Lamproom, by the Belgian artist Luc Tuymans, alongside Voodoo Child, a primal and earthy 1996 work on paper by Marlene Dumas.


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Summer 2000


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