September 28, 2016 - Centre Pompidou-Metz - Oskar Schlemmer: The Dancing Artist / An Imagined Museum
September 28, 2016

Centre Pompidou-Metz

Oskar Schlemmer, Danse de l’espace, 1927. Photograph. © 2016 Oskar Schlemmer. Photo: Archive C. Raman Schlemmer.

Oskar Schlemmer
The Dancing Artist
October 13, 2016–January 16, 2017

An Imagined Museum
What If Art Disappeared? Three European Collections: Centre Pompidou, Tate, MMK
October 19, 2016–March 27, 2017

Centre Pompidou-Metz
1 Parvis des Droits de l'Homme
57020 Metz
Hours: Wednesday–Monday 10am–6pm
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Oskar Schlemmer: The Dancing Artist

Centre Pompidou-Metz is pleased to present Oskar Schlemmer: The Dancing Artist, an exhibition exploring the influential work of German artist and choreographer Oskar Schlemmer (1888–1943), who revolutionized the art of dance and performance within the Bauhaus.

Exceptionally gathering original costumes, sculptures and set elements, an important number of preparatory drawings including the “Dance-Figure Sketchbook” [Tanz-Figurinen Skizzenbuch] condensing about 15 years of Schlemmer’s reflection, but also photographs, films and archive material, the exhibition focuses on Oskar Schlemmer’s relationship to the “stage” [Bühne].

Indeed, Oskar Schlemmer, conceiving the human body as an artistic medium and placing the study of body movements at the core of his artistic thinking and practice, played a pivotal role in the history of performing arts. The exhibition shows his desire and ambition to establish a modern theatrical and choreographic art through his manifesto-work, the Triadic Ballet [Das Triadische Ballet], but also through the Bauhaus performances and dances, or his staging of works by important composers, such as Igor Stravinsky or Arnold Schönberg.

Through the work of Oskar Schlemmer, we discover another Bauhaus, which is not only a school of applied arts, but also a key territory for performative and choreographic experiments in the interwar, until the closure in 1933.

During the exhibition, dancers from the CCN-Ballet de Lorraine, directed by Petter Jacobsson and Thomas Caley, will re-enact some of Schlemmer’s dances in the exhibition space, imagining a dialogue between the body and the costume and reviving the atmosphere of the time. (Schedule of performances available on

The exhibition will also feature works by Oskar Schlemmer’s contemporaries, including Giorgio de Chirico, Constantin Brancusi, Alexandra Exter and artists met at the Bauhaus—Wassily Kandinsky, Lászlò Moholy-Nagy, Paul Klee.

C. Raman Schlemmer
Emma Lavigne, Centre Pompidou-Metz


An Imagined Museum
What If Art Disappeared?
Three European Collections: Centre Pompidou, Tate, MMK

The exhibition imagines a catastrophic fictional scenario in which the visitor is transported to 2052, a time when art is threatened with disappearance. More than 80 key artworks from three European collections have been saved temporarily and been brought together in a transnational museum, a kind of precarious time capsule in which iconic concepts conveyed by art via a selection of significant works, are preserved for future generations. Using motifs borrowed from dystopian science fiction and Ray Bradbury’s novel Fahrenheit 451 (1953) in particular, the selection of works raises the question as to why the memory of art should be saved. What qualities make art an essential part of our lives and our societies? Members of the visiting public are invited to preserve these works by their own memory in order to create and maintain an imaginary collection. This fictitious scenario resonates with our recent history, involving the censorship and destruction of cultural heritage, thus creating the background for what could be called an anticipatory exhibition.

Hélène Guenin, MAMAC, Nice, and Alexandra Müller, Centre Pompidou-Metz
Francesco Manacorda and Darren Pih, Tate Liverpool
Peter Gorschlüter, MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt an Main


Still on view

Music And Visual Arts
Masterpieces from
the collection of Centre Pompidou – Musée national d’art moderne
Until July 17, 2017

Between Two Horizons
German and French Avant-Gardes From The Saarlandmuseum

Until January 16, 2017

Opening hours
April 1–October 31: Monday, Wednesday–Thursday 10am-6pm, Friday–Sunday 10am–7pm
November 1–March 31: Monday, Wednesday–Sunday 10am–6pm

Only 85 minutes via high-speed train from Paris, 50 minutes from Strasbourg and Luxembourg and 2 hours 15 minutes from Basel.

Centre Pompidou-Metz
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The Dancing Artist
An Imagined Museum
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