September 19, 2014 - San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) - Markus Schinwald at CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts
September 19, 2014

Markus Schinwald at CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts

Markus Schinwald, Lavinia, 2007. Oil on canvas.
© Markus Schinwald. Photo courtesy the artist.

Markus Schinwald
September 9–December 13, 2014

CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts
360 Kansas Street
San Francisco, CA 94103

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) in partnership with the CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts presents Markus Schinwald, on view at the Wattis Institute from September 9 through December 13. This site-responsive exhibition marks the first major commission by Austrian artist Markus Schinwald (b. 1973) at a US institution. Part of SFMOMA’s On the Go program, the exhibition features an architectural intervention that changes the physical and psychological potential of the gallery and provides a display apparatus for Schinwald’s paintings and sculptures. This show continues the museum’s long-standing New Work series, which provides a platform for innovative contemporary artists to develop or premiere a body of work or present existing work in a new content. Markus Schinwald also inaugurates a new exhibition program at the Wattis developed by its recently appointed director, Anthony Huberman.

Schinwald’s paintings, sculptures, videos, performances, and installations confuse the boundaries between bodies, objects, spaces, and behaviors, and complicate the norms that govern the ways we understand how they co-exist. The artist’s paintings begin as 19th-century canvases that he purchases at auction and carefully alters by introducing new elements such as braces, jewelry, chains, or head coverings. Based on a careful study of the figure and the surface and often executed with the help of a conservator, these painted additions seamlessly blend with the original, as if they were always part of the image or form. These introduced prosthesis act as a correction joining two disparate parts that imbue the figures with a new character or persona. A similar shift occurs in Schinwald’s wooden sculptures cut from Chippendale-style table legs. Instilled with a heightened sense of agency, even deviance, these sculptures appear to bend and stretch, crawl up walls, or wrap themselves around bronze poles. The structure that holds the paintings and sculptures together is the room itself, which unfolds like a body with artificial limbs and joints, disrupting the pre-existing physical structure of the space and imagining new, other, and sometimes impossible types of bodies and ways of thinking about bodies.

Markus Schinwald is co-curated by Jenny Gheith, assistant curator of painting and sculpture at SFMOMA, and Anthony Huberman, director of the CCA Wattis Institute. 

Exhibition organization
Markus Schinwald is jointly organized by CCA Wattis Institute and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. The exhibition is part of SFMOMA’s New Work series, which is generously supported by the museum’s Collectors Forum, the founding patron of the series. Markus Schinwald is also made possible by Adriane Iann and Christian Stolz, Carlie Wilmans, Patricia W. Fitzpatrick, Nancy and R. Patrick Forster, Station to Station, and the Austrian Cultural Forum New York, with special thanks to Giò Marconi.

About Markus Schinwald
Born in Salzburg, Austria, in 1973, Schinwald studied at the Hochschule für Gestaltung in Linz and Humboldt University in Berlin, and currently lives and works in Vienna. In 2011, he represented Austria at the 54th Venice Biennale. He has a major solo exhibition opening at M – Museum Leuven later this fall and has had solo shows at CAPC Musée d’Art Contemporain de Bordeaux (2013); Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2013); Sala Verónicas, La Conservera Centro de Arte Contemporáneo, Murica (2012); Kunstverein Hannover (2011); Kunsthaus Bregenz (2009); Migros Museum, Zurich (2008); Aspen Art Museum (2006); MAMbo, Bologna (2006); CAC Brétigny (2006); Frankfurter Kunstverein (2004); and Moderna Museet, Stockholm (2001). 

About SFMOMA’s New Work series
Since 1987, SFMOMA’s New Work series has provided a platform for experimentation: a space for artists to develop or premiere a body of work or present existing work in a new context. Initiated with the support of SFMOMA’s Collectors Forum, the series focuses on the innovative ideas and visions of national and international artists, and has played a key role in shaping the breadth and character of the museum’s collection and programming. Through New Work, SFMOMA has organized early exhibitions with artists such as Matthew Barney, Marilyn Minter, Kara Walker, and Christopher Wool, all of whom received their first solo museum shows through the series. Additionally, New Work has featured Richard Aldrich, Phil Collins, Trisha Donnelly, Vincent Fecteau, Rachel Harrison, Glenn Ligon, Kerry James Marshall, Lucy McKenzie, Tatsuo Miyajima, Wangechi Mutu, Anna Parkina, Mai-Thu Perret, Alessandro Pessoli, R. H. Quaytman, Mika Rottenberg, Doris Salcedo, Felix Schramm, Ranjani Shettar, Paul Sietsema, Luc Tuymans, Katharina Wulff, and Andrea Zittel, among many others.

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)
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