16 February–14 April 2013
Moderna Museet Malmö
Gasverksgatan 22, Malmö, Sweden
Hours: Tuesday–Sunday 11–6 pm
Tala Madani is in the midst of a major international breakthrough, and Malmö is the first opportunity for an in-depth survey of her oeuvre. On 16 February, Rip Image opens at Moderna Museet Malmö—Tala Madani’s biggest solo exhibition to date.
Tala Madani works with painting and animation, and her work examines political subjects such as power structures, masculinity and group dynamics. The viewer is invited into a visual world populated exclusively by middle-aged men engaged in ambiguous and often absurd situations. Madani’s imagery oscillates between abstraction and figuration, seriousness and comedy.
Tala Madani, born in Iran in 1981 and now living and working in the USA, has recently enjoyed growing international recognition. She was recently nominated for one of the world’s largest art awards—the Future Generation Art Prize—and participated in the Danish Pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2011. She has also taken part in group exhibitions at MoMA PS1 (2010) and at the New Museum in New York (2009). Moderna Museet Malmö is the first museum to give visitors a more extensive opportunity to discover her oeuvre. Some 80 paintings, works on paper and several animations will be presented in the Turbine Hall.
“At Moderna Museet Malmö we are delighted to present one of the most talked-about younger artists in the world right now. And one with an important message: Tala Madani’s sardonic descriptions of male behaviour can teach us something about men and their manners. Whether they be men in Sweden, the US or Iran, we can learn from each other’s mistakes,” says John Peter Nilsson, Director of Moderna Museet Malmö.
Tala Madani’s small paintings invite the viewer to attend situations in which the power structures and male gender roles have been inverted. Men interact and appear to be involved in ritualistic situations, where our laughter turns into contemplation. Complex structures and emotional layers are added to each other until the given outcomes are cancelled out. Madani’s oeuvre confronts human frailty and the great communal and personal challenges of our own era. Her art serves as a social solvent on roles and relations. By playing with stereotypes and symbols, she forces us not only to open our eyes, but also to ask ourselves why we see what we see.
“Tala Madani discusses and comments on extremely important and urgent subjects today. And by denuding desires and norms she forces us not only to look at society at large but also to challenge our own set of values. In that sense, her work is doubly potent, and she increases its impact through the use of humour and satire in her imagery,” says Andreas Nilsson, co-curator of the exhibition.
An extensive and richly illustrated catalogue has been produced for the exhibition, including essays by Joa Ljungberg and Andreas Nilsson, and a conversation between Tala Madani and Hans Ulrich Obrist. After Moderna Museet Malmö, Rip Image will go on to Moderna Museet in Stockholm, where it will be shown in summer-autumn 2013.
Moderna Museet Malmö and Department K3 at Malmö University are jointly organising a programme of lectures throughout the exhibition period. The first of these is by the international artist collective Slavs and Tatars, on 26 February. For more information on coming events, please visit modernamuseet.se.
Curators: Joa Ljungberg and Andreas Nilsson
The exhibition is supported by: E.ON.