Sara Issakharian 4654 W Washington Blvd, LA 21 October – 11 November 2023
Alejandro Cesarco ‘Conditionals’ Kurfürstenstraße 24/25, Berlin 4 November – 16 December 2023
Signs of Life
Moravian Gallery, Brno
21 September 2023 – 31 March 2024
Tanya Leighton, Berlin
4 November – 16 December 2023
A leap into the Void
GAMeC – Galleria d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea, Bergamo
2 February – 28 May 2023
Screening: Ricerche: Two
Contemporanea International Film Festival, Turin
13 – 17 October 2023
It’s Human Nature?
Kunstverein Harburger Bahnhof, Hamburg
2 September – 19 November 2023
The land describes itself
Pulitzer Arts Foundation, St. Louis, Missouri
8 March – 4 August 2024
Under the Moon, Beneath the Flowers
Tanya Leighton, Los Angeles
9 September – 14 October 2023
Award: 2023 Baloise Art Prize
Tanya Leighton, Los Angeles
Tanya Leighton, Los Angeles
Beyond the Page: South Asian Miniature Painting and Britain, 1600 to Now
MK Gallery, Milton Keynes, United Kingdom
7 October 2023 – 28 January 2024
All Crescendo, No Reward
Zabludowicz Collection, London
28 September 2023 – 4 February 2024
Solo exhibition (curated by Alberto Salvadori)
Fondazione ICA Milano
Publication: The Man Who Envied Women
Kirsty Bell, Elisabeth Lebovici, Bart van der Heide, Nana Adusei-Poku et al., published by Bierke
Audain Gallery, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver
17 October – 14 December 2024
Kunsthal Thy, Denmark
Oakville Galleries, Gairloch Gardens, Toronto
1 October – 30 December 2023
The Lives of Documents—Photography as Project
Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montréal
3 May 2023 – 3 March 2024
Tanya Leighton, established in 2008, is dedicated to developing a cross-disciplinary, trans-generational gallery programme with off-site projects, in collaboration with artists, filmmakers, critics, art historians, and curators. Its international exhibition programme reflects a variety of opinions and practices as well as Leighton’s associations with American and British experimental cinema, artist’s film and video, performance, minimal and conceptual art.
Director: Tanya Leighton
Associate Director, LA: Andrew McNeely
Associate Director, Berlin: Melanie García
Director of Special Projects: Alana Parpal
Operations Director: Adina Laub
Gallery Manager: Zheng Zhang
Gallery Assistant: Paula Vogels
Finance Manager: Shuai Wang
Head Technician: Dominic Samsworth
Tanya Leighton Berlin
Kurfürstenstraße 156 & 24/25
Berlin 10785 DE
Tanya Leighton Los Angeles
4654 W Washington Blvd
LA 90016 CA
Open Tuesday – Saturday
11–6pm and by appointment
Open Wednesday – Saturday
11–5pm and by appointment
Robert and Trix Haussman, Friedrich Kuhn
2 May – 28 June 2014, Tanya Leighton, Berlin
Tanya Leighton and Herald St, London are pleased to announce a collaborative exhibition featuring the work of Friedrich Kuhn and Robert and Trix Haussmann. This is the first time that the notorious, post-war Swiss artist and the 2013 Swiss Grand Prix Design winning couple have been shown alongside each other, despite their longstanding friendship, philosophical similarities and geographic proximity.
Having lived his entire life in Switzerland – before his untimely death in 1972 at the age of 46 – Friedrich Kuhn’s pioneering experiments in painting, sculpture, collage and printmaking are only beginning to become known outside of his home country. Kuhn was self-taught, purposefully muddying his personal history and casting himself as Switzerland’s bohemian. A spectacle and regular on the scenes of Zurich, Bern and Lucerne, Kuhn remained unplaceable outside of the unstable rumours and gossip which defined him (and to which he actively contributed). Despite this eccentric isolationism, Kuhn’s legacy retains a decidedly non-provincial position. His oeuvre demonstrates the characteristics of an artist grappling with and shaping the artistic tenants of post-modernism. Seeking self-actualization over subscription to a narrow critical doctrine, Kuhn’s idiosyncratic artworks demand empathy from his viewers and reward proportionally.
Robert and Trix Haussmann began collaborating in Zurich shortly after their marriage in 1965 – together seeking a novel alternative to the rigid form follows function dogma of design in an era disrupted by global redefinition. Instead of the Bauhaus, the pair has long looked to Mannerist tendencies of the 16th century, incorporating the ornamental, exaggeration of form and anamorphosis. The couple coined the term ‘Manierismo Critico’ to encompass their oppositional program, defined by the Haussmanns as ‘[…] taking up lost tradition, pursuing its further development and giving it a contemporary new interpretation – combined with humour and last, but not least, a touch of self-mockery’.
This intently researched investigation into classical architecture and design is apparent in all of the Haussmanns’ output, particularly the ‘Lehrstücke’ (‘Teaching Items’), a series of sculptures and models that serve – in lieu of a written manifesto – as illustrations of ‘Manierismo Critico’. Among these objects is a faux Roman column with radial drawers that destroy the object’s visual harmony when in use. Another is a veneer and mirror inlayed pillar; illusionistically designed to resemble a simple geometric bookshelf, the face of the cabinet is a functionless trompe l’oeil. The shelving is hidden behind its elaborate doors.
Two examples of the Haussmanns’ ‘Lehrstücke’ are on display at the gallery in the form of segmented mirrors, framed in ornate wood, which create illusionistic space while reflecting the actual space around them. Opposite an arched Haussmann ‘Lehrstücke’ hangs a large canvas by Kuhn from 1962; packed with varied painting languages the work straddles figuration and abstraction. Only after a few moments of scrutiny does the painting reveal itself to be dotted with painted flies and bugs. A chair sculpture by Kuhn is installed on the gallery floor below: an anthropomorphic, sprawling construction, robbed entirely of its functionality, instead becoming either a frolicking or writhing body. Fittingly, the Haussmanns first collaboration was a non-functioning chair, its legs and backrest made solely of neon tubing.
Kuhn’s chair is echoed in the upper gallery, where a mirrored couch and easy chairs designed by the Haussmanns reflect their surroundings: screen prints by Kuhn, populated with patterned palm trees in an array of colors. Imagined fauna was a regular subject of Kuhn’s and by the late 1960s he embraced the palm tree as a reoccurring motif, perhaps a personification of himself. Just like Kuhn’s outlandish persona – fueled by the public he amused and antagonized – the intrigue of the palm tree is a product of societal mythologization. In 1968 Kuhn held his most wildly appreciated exhibition, ‘Palmenausstellung’ on Zollikerstraße in Zurich. The four screen prints and a small painting from this period are on view in the gallery, marking the last development in Kuhn’s career before his death four years later.
Seen together for the first time, the work of Robert and Trix Haussmann and Friedrich Kuhn reveals not just two spirited artistic positions, but also a kinship in idiosyncrasy. These are artists whose work unflinchingly questions stylistic norms, material specificity and taste itself, while never betraying their own passion for artistic exploration.