INDEPENDENT 20th CENTURY
Battery Maritime Building
Cipriani South Street, New York
September 8-11, 2022
In parallel with the exhibition at the gallery, Luxembourg + Co. will mark its participation in the first edition of the Independent 20th Century Art Fair, New York, with a presentation of a radical cycle of paintings that Miró executed in the summer of 1936 on Masonite boards. These works from the 1930s are among the artist’s most agressive assaults against painting, exploiting the raw texture of Masonite surfaces and the ability of the material to be worked in ways dramatically different from conventional canvas. Thrilled by his new creations, the artist told his New York dealer, Pierre Matisse, not to be concerned if any of the materials he applied to his Masonites came loose during their shipment overseas, since it would ‘make these recent works lose their beautiful objective quality and by that gain even more power. It will make the surface of the ground look like an old crumbling wall, which will give great force to the formal expression.’
Miró’s unrestrained approach to painting, testing the limits of the medium on both material and conceptual grounds, has come to play a significant role in the practices of many contemporary artists, who continue to rethink the legacy of this practice under new technological and ideological terms. Taking a leading role in the renewed exploration of painting over the last few years, the artist Peter Fischli recently set out to curate a monumental exhibition and book project titled Stop Painting. Luxembourg + Co.’s presentation at the Independent 20th Century Art Fair will continue this engagement by inviting Fischli to respond to and intervene in the display of Miró’s Masonites. Fischli’s response will include a group of sculptures resembling cans, coated in different shades of matt and glossy paint. An ongoing project developed since 2017, the Cans embody an unspecified attribution (are these paint containers? Tinned food cans? Abstract sculptures?) and their condition – some open, some closed – raises questions not only about their status as art objects but also concerning their relationship to painting and sculpture alike. Placed in conversation with one of history’s greatest assassins of painting, Fischli’s curatorial and artistic intervention brings to the fore the relevance of an age-old debate about the nature of the art object.