June 3, 2017 - Philadelphia Museum of Art - Bruce Nauman works jointly acquired by Philadelphia Museum and Pinault Collection
June 3, 2017

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Bruce Nauman, Walks In Walks Out (still), 2015. Video (side dual 7x7), Bruce Nauman. Image © Bruce Nauman/Artists Right Society (ARS).

Bruce Nauman works jointly acquired by Philadelphia Museum and Pinault Collection

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The Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Pinault Collection - Paris and Venice, have announced the joint acquisition of two important works by Bruce Nauman, including Contrapposto Studies, I through VII, 2015/2016, consisting of seven large-scale video projections with sound, and Walks In Walks Out, 2015, a closely related work comprising a single-channel video with sound. Walks In Walks Out is currently on view at the Philadelphia Museum of Art through August.

Emerging in the 1960s, in the midst of Postminimalism and Conceptual Art, Nauman developed a radical approach that has encompassed sculpture, sound, installation, film, and video. His work questions the very nature of what constitutes art and being an artist.

Timothy Rub, the George D. Widener Director and CEO of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, stated: “We are delighted to join forces with the Pinault Collection to acquire these two major works. I am delighted that they have found a home here and in Europe, as Nauman continues to exert a strong influence on a younger generation of artists throughout the world.”

François Pinault stated: “Thanks to this joint acquisition, a major work by one the greatest artists of our time will be presented to a large international audience in the United States and Europe. Furthermore, this acquisition underlines the importance of Bruce Nauman’s works within Pinault Collection and the quality of the relationships Pinault Collection has built with the most important museums in the world.”

Contrapposto Studies, I through VII, which was recently presented at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, is among the largest and most ambitious works created by Nauman over the last two decades. Walks In Walks Out, 2015, captures the artist in the process of making it. He is seen walking into and out of the view of a camera as it projects a sequence from Contrapposto Studies, I through VII, onto his studio wall.

Carlos Basualdo, The Keith L. and Katherine Sachs Senior Curator of Contemporary Art, said: “These works interrogate the ways in which our perception constructs—or distorts—our relation to reality. They work on multiple levels, drawing both from art history and from Nauman’s own biography.”

In Spring 2018, the Philadelphia Museum of Art will publish Bruce Nauman: Contrapposto Studies. It will include an interview with the artist by Carlos Basualdo; an essay by Erica F. Battle, The John Alchin and Hal Marryatt Associate Curator of Contemporary Art; and an essay by Caroline Bourgeois, Curator of the Pinault Collection. The Museum gratefully acknowledges Sperone Westwater for its support of the publication.

Contrapposto Studies I through VII and Walks In, Walks Out are jointly owned by the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Pinault Collection. The funds used by the Philadelphia Museum of Art include the Henry P. McIlhenny Fund in memory of Frances P. McIlhenny, John Alchin and Hal Marryatt, Keith L. and Katherine Sachs, and Constance and Sankey Williams, with additional generous support from Mari and Peter Shaw, Dennis Alter, Barbara B. and Theodore R. Aronson, Mr. and Mrs. Berton E. Korman, Marguerite and Gerry Lenfest, and other donors.

About Bruce Nauman
Bruce Nauman was born in 1941 in Fort Wayne, Indiana. In 1994, his traveling retrospective and catalogue raisonné were organized by the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, in association with the Hirschhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, D.C. Bruce Nauman: Topological Gardens, organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art, was the official U.S. entry in 2009 to the 53rd Venice Biennale and garnered the Golden Lion for Best National Participation. Since 1975, Bruce Nauman has been represented by Sperone Westwater gallery.

For additional press information contact the press office pressroom [​at​] philamuseum.org or at T 215-684-7860. For general information, call T 215-763-8100 or visit philamuseum.org.

Philadelphia Museum of Art
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