Steve McQueen at Schaulager

Photo courtesy of Tom Bisig

Steve McQueen at Schaulager Museum

Schaulager Museum is presenting the first comprehensive exhibition of work by the radical British video artist and filmmaker Steve McQueen. For the first time, more than twenty video and film installations, photographs and other selected work will be on view in a larger context. For this unprecedented show, two floors of the Schaulager have been architecturally transformed into a custom-built City of Cinemas. Interior and exterior spaces with viewing apertures, mirrors and variations in light intensities and degrees of darkness provide surprising insights into the artist’s work.

Photo courtesy of Steve McQueen

“Steve McQueen” is an experience quite unlike a conventional exhibition. Works with moving images make greater demands on the viewer’s time than paintings or sculptures. Therefore, the admission tickets are valid for three visits to the exhibition. Much like going to the cinema, the exhibition is open from afternoon to evening.

Photo courtesy of Steve McQueen

Nothing could be more appropriate than to speak of a “body of work” in reference to the wide-ranging and yet clearly defined oeuvre of the British artist Steve McQueen (born in 1969 in London). The artist, now in the midst of his career, has already received many awards for his work, which is in ceaseless development and transformation. Each new piece is surprising for its precision and the courage in taking new directions, as demonstrated once again in the works created especially for the present show.

Photo courtesy of Steve McQueen

As a rule, Carib’s Leap is shown in tandem with Western Deep (both 2002). Here, for the first time, it is screened separately and in the entirely different dimensions of the LED walls on the Schaulager façade. Outdoors in the light of day, the moving pictures communicate directly with the environment. The artist has introduced another striking variation in the unusual means of presentation he has devised for the three works with which he began his career twenty years ago. Bear (1993), Five Easy Pieces (1995) and Just Above My Head (1996) are juxtaposed by being projected on a triangular screen in the middle of the room. The open presentation of multiple viewpoints generates a presence in space that transforms the films into an extension of sculpture in moving images, revealing their seminal influence on the development of McQueen’s later work.

Steve McQueen
Schaulager Museum, Basel
16 March – 1 September 2013

more. http://www.schaulager.org/

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