July 6, 2012 - Kunsthaus Bregenz - Reading Ed Ruscha
July 6, 2012

Reading Ed Ruscha

Ed Ruscha with some of his publications, 1971.
Black and white photograph, 35.5 x 27.9 cm.*

Ed Ruscha
Reading Ed Ruscha

7 July–14 October 2012

Kunsthaus Bregenz
6900 Bregenz


The work of Ed Ruscha (b. 1937), one of the best-known artists of his generation, eludes established categories. Assigned to Pop Art at the start of his career and later on to Conceptual Art, today it is clear that one of the qualities of Ed Ruscha’s work is its never confining itself to one style or medium.

For all its variety of styles and techniques, however, Ed Ruscha’s work also displays certain constants. Among these is his use of writing, whether in print form or painted onto pictures on canvas. It is a red thread that runs through his oeuvre from its earliest beginnings to the present. As far back as the early 1960s he produced his legendary artist books.

With these works alone Ed Ruscha went down in art history and influenced later generations. His works are represented in the most important museums worldwide, and two years ago a major retrospective of his painting toured the museums of North America and Europe.

While that retrospective was devoted exclusively to his painting, the Kunsthaus Bregenz will be presenting not one but an entire range of media including drawing, photogravure, book, film, and acrylic and oil painting. The focus will be on an obvious-enough area which, nevertheless, has never been fully examined to date, namely, the significance of the book and/or the act of “reading” in his work.

Just how productive Ed Ruscha’s engagement with the written word is can be seen from his artist books, all of which are on show in the Bregenz exhibition, as also from the abstract oil and acrylic pictures of the 
Cityscapes series. Over a dozen such works in the exhibition document not only the atmospheric density that this combination of visual abstraction and the words supplied in thought can generate, but also a remarkable directness varying from despair and aggression to humor.

There are also new, large-format pictures, likewise produced exclusively for the exhibition, that are being presented to the public for the first time.

The exhibition Reading Ed Ruscha was specially conceived by the artist for the Kunsthaus Bregenz. It will be, surprisingly, his first institutional solo exhibition in Austria.

KUB Arena
Summer Academy: Art and the Critique of Ideology after 89
24–30 September 2012

The KUB Arena summer program this year is devoted to research in the form of a summer academy. In collaboration with the Institute for Art and Cultural Studies of the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, Eva Birkenstock and Max Jorge Hinderer Cruz will be organizing a summer seminar with students and international guests to examine critical developments in art and aesthetic theory in an increasingly globalized world. In this spirit the KUB Arena in its events and the accompanying publication will analyze the self-conception of society underlying the post-1989 art world.

KUB Collection Showcase
Architectural Models by Peter Zumthor
23 June–28 October 2012

Unknown to many, the Kunsthaus Bregenz has its own collection. One of the largest groups of works in the collection consists of architectural models by Peter Zumthor. Some of these exhibits have been archived by KUB since the architect’s solo exhibition in 2007. Further models have been or are still being added to the collection as permanent loans.

Beginning June 2012, a selection of these models by Peter Zumthor will be on show in the 200-square-meter space on the first floor of the post office building directly adjacent to the Kunsthaus Bregenz. Buildings and projects that were realized as well as those that remained in the design stage will be on show. The variety displayed in the exhibition demonstrate the outstanding role that working with models and materials as wood, metal, or clay play in Peter Zumthor’s studio.

KUB Collection Showcase
Seestraße 5, 6900 Bregenz, Austria
Admission Tickets at the KUB Reception Desk.
Entrance from the Kornmarktstraße side, alongside the Nepomuk Chapel.

T +43 5574 485 94 0

For further information: www.kunsthaus-bregenz.at.

*Image above:
Ed Ruscha with some of his publications, 1971. Black and white photograph, 35.5 x 27.9 cm. Photo: Jerry McMillan. Courtesy Ed Ruscha and Gagosian Gallery.

Kunsthaus Bregenz
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