Marlene Dumas (born in 1953 in Capetown, South Africa) is one of the most prominent and influential painters working today. In an era dominated by the mass media and a proliferation of images, her work is a testament to the meaning and potency of painting. Her intense, psychologically-charged works explores themes such as sexuality, love, death and guilt, often referencing art history and current affairs. Dumas often draws on her expansive visual archive for inspiration and uses the nuances of language to great effect. Her paintings and drawings are characterised by their extraordinary immediacy, expressiveness and sometimes controversial subject matter. This fully-illustrated exhibition catalogue accompanies a major exhibition at Tate Modern in 2015, curated by Tate, the Stendelijk Museum and the Fondation Beyeler in close collaboration with the artist. It will provide a survey of the artist's remarkable oeuvre from the mid-70s to the present day. It will include over 100 artworks displaying her most important paintings and drawings alongside lesser-known works from the early period of her career. Essays from a wide range of contributors will examine the key themes and motifs in her work and will reflect on Dumas' entire career.
Described by Deborah Solomon in a New York Times profile as “one of contemporary art’s most compelling painters,” Marlene Dumas has continuously explored the complex range of human emotions, often probing questions of gender, race, sexuality, and economic inequality through her dramatic and at times haunting figural compositions. Originally published in 2010 on the occasion of Against the Wall, Dumas’s first solo presentation at David Zwirner in New York, this much sought-after exhibition catalogue—which sold out shortly after publication—has been reprinted to coincide with the artist’s 2014–2015 European retrospective exhibition The Image as Burden, organized by Tate Modern, London in collaboration with the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam and the Fondation Beyeler, Basel. Throughout her career, the internationally renowned artist has continually created lyrically charged compositions that eulogize the frailties of the human body, probing issues of love and melancholy. At times her subjects are more topical, merging socio-political themes with personal experience and art-historical antecedents to reflect unique perspectives on the most salient and controversial issues facing contemporary society. The large-scale works included in Against the Wall are primarily based on media imagery and newspaper clippings documenting the conflict between Israel and Palestine, exploring the tension between the photographic documentation of reality and the constructed, imaginary space of painting. The Wall, the painting that began the series, at first appears to present a scene at the Western Wall (also known as the Wailing Wall), an important site of religious pilgrimage located in Jerusalem. However, this work is based upon a photograph from a newspaper that portrayed a group of Orthodox Jews on their way to pray at Rachel’s Tomb in Bethlehem. Through her delicate treatment of every scene, Dumas destabilizes preconceived notions about what, in fact, is being pictured—engaging the often ambiguous nature of ideas like truth or justice. “In a sense they are my first landscape paintings,” Dumas further notes in the catalogue, “or should I say ‘territory paintings.’ That is why they are so big.” The somber color plates reproduced in the publication are given context by Dumas’s own musings, a text framed as a letter to David Zwirner in which she tries to tell him “about the ‘why’ ” of this powerful series.
Contemporary art can be baffling and beautiful, provocative and disturbing. This pioneering book presents a new look at the controversial period between 1945 and 2015, when art and its traditional forms were called into question. It focuses on the relationship between American and European art, and challenges previously held views about the origins of some of the most innovative ideas in art of this time. Major artists such as Jackson Pollock, Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, Joseph Beuys, Gerhard Richter, Louise Bourgeois, Cindy Sherman, Jeff Koons, and Shiran Neshat are all discussed, as is the art world of the last fifty years. Important trends are also covered including Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art, Minimalism, Conceptualism, Postmodernism, and Performance Art. This revised and updated second edition includes a new chapter exploring art since 2000 and how globalization has caused shifts in the art world, an updated Bibliography, and 16 new, colour illustrations.
An analytic and historical perspective of literary texts to understand the position of domestic workers in South Africa More than a million black South African women are domestic workers. Precariously situated between urban and rural areas,rich and poor, white and black, these women are at once intimately connected and at a distant remove from the families they serve. Ena Jansen shows that domestic worker relations in South Africa were shaped by the institution of slavery, establishing social hierarchies and patterns of behavior that persist today. LikeFamily is an updated version of the award-winning Soos familie (2015) and the highly-acclaimed 2016 Dutch translation, Bijna familie.
When nations decide to disown their troubled pasts, how does this strategic disavowal harden into social fact? In Negative Exposures, Margaret Hillenbrand investigates the erasure of key aspects of such momentous events as the Nanjing Massacre, the Cultural Revolution, and the Tiananmen Square protests from the Chinese historical consciousness, not due to amnesia or censorship but through the operations of public secrecy. Knowing what not to know, she argues, has many stakeholders, willing and otherwise, who keep quiet to protect themselves or their families out of shame, pragmatism, or the palliative effects of silence. Hillenbrand shows how secrecy works as a powerful structuring force in Chinese society, one hiding in plain sight, and identifies aesthetic artifacts that serve as modes of reckoning against this phenomenon. She analyses the proliferation of photo-forms—remediations of well-known photographs of troubling historical events rendered in such media as paint, celluloid, fabric, digital imagery, and tattoos—as imaginative spaces in which the shadows of secrecy are provocatively outlined.
In Venus in Exile renowned cultural critic Wendy Steiner explores the twentieth century's troubled relationship with beauty. Disdained by avant-garde artists, feminists, and activists, beauty and its major symbols of art—the female subject and ornament—became modernist taboos. To this day it is hard to champion beauty in art without sounding aesthetically or politically retrograde. Steiner argues instead that the experience of beauty is a form of communication, a subject-object interchange in which finding someone or something beautiful is at the same time recognizing beauty in oneself. This idea has led artists and writers such as Marlene Dumas, Christopher Bram, and Cindy Sherman to focus on the long-ignored figure of the model, who function in art as both a subject and an object. Steiner concludes Venus in Exile on a decidedly optimistic note, demonstrating that beauty has created a new and intensely pleasurable direction for contemporary artistic practice.
Steiner explores the twentieth century's troubled relationship with beauty. Where previous eras had celebrated beauty as the central aim of art, the twentieth century modernist avant-garde were deeply suspicious of beauty and its perennial symbols, woman and ornament. Modernism's rejection of traditional tenets of beauty--harmony, empathy and femininity--still reverberate through both art and society today.
Across the Arab world, protesters voiced dissent through slogans, graffiti, puppetry, videos, and satire that called for the overthrow of dictatorial regimes. Investigating what drives people to risk everything to express themselves in rebellious art, Marwan M. Kraidy uncovers the creative insurgency at the heart of the Arab uprisings of 2010–2012.
Part of the acclaimed 'Documents of Contemporary Art' series of anthologies . Beauty is among the most hotly contested subjects in current discussions on art and culture. After decades of disavowal, beauty's resurgence in recent art has engaged some of the most influential artists and writers. Spanning diverse positions, this anthology assembles the key texts on the cultural politics of this recent phenomenon, as well as contextualizing these debates - both for and against - in artistic practice and the broader history of aesthetics. Artists surveyed include: Vito Acconci, Jake and Dinos Chapman, Gustave Courbet, Marcel Duchamp, Marlene Dumas, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Adolph Gottlieb, Hans Hofmann, Gary Hume, Asger Jorn, Alex Katz, Willem de Kooning, Joseph Kosuth, Paul McCarthy, Edouard Manet, Robert Mapplethorpe, Agnes Martin, Robert Morris, Barnett Newman, Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock, Gerhard Richter, Mark Rothko, Robert Smithson, Nancy Spero, Frank Stella, Clyfford Still and Andy Warhol. Writers include: Theodor Adorno, Alexander Alberro, Rasheed Araeen, Art & Language, Benjamin H. D. Buchloh, T. J. Clark, Mark Cousins, Arthur C. Danto, Jacques Derrida, Thierry de Duve, Fredric Jameson, Christoph Grunenberg, Dave Hickey, Suzanne Perling Hudson, Caroline A. Jones, John Roberts, Elaine Scarry, Wendy Steiner and Paul Wood.
A highly skilled 'painter's painter', Marlene Dumas comments through her work on the state of painting today while asking what it means to be a woman working within the predominantly male genre of expressionist art. She has exhibited since the late 1970s and her work has been included in major solo exhibitions at the Museum fur Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt (1998), and the Tate Gallery, London (1996), as well as in numerous group exhibitions, including, most recently, the 51st Venice Biennale (2005) Marlene Dumas is represented by Zeno X Gallery, Antwerp; Paul Andriesse, Amsterdam; Frith Street Gallery, London; Produzentengalerie, Hamburg;Le Case d'Arte, Milan.