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Thomas Schütte

September 29, 2024 – January 18, 2025

The Museum of Modern Art

The Museum of Modern Art announces a retrospective of German contemporary artist Thomas Schütte, which will provide a holistic survey of his career from 1975 to the present. On view in the Steven and Alexandra Cohen Center for Special Exhibitions from September 29, 2024, through January 18, 2025, the exhibition will include Schütte’s sculptures, drawings, prints, and experiments in architecture. Taking aesthetics, form, and history as its focus, the exhibition aims to provide a deeper understanding of the artist’s practice and introduce new audiences to one of the most significant sculptors working today. Presented solely at MoMA, this will be the first museum survey of Schütte’s work in the United States  in over 20 years and will feature a selection of rarely seen works, in addition to those for which he is well known.

Born in Oldenburg, Germany, in 1954, Schütte studied at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf with Gerhard Richter and a cohort of artists at the academy that included Katharina Fritsch, Isa Genzken, Andreas Gursky, Thomas Struth, and others. His early work offered a critique of then-dominant Minimalist and Conceptual art while deeply engaging with cultural and historical content. Schütte’s two-pronged approach considers both the short and long histories of art and embeds them within broader narratives, resulting in a body of work that is both visually and conceptually arresting. This exhibition will consider the common thread that binds these seemingly unrelated objects—ranging from figurative sculpture to intimate watercolors and architectural models—and what they reveal about art and the culture in which they were made.

Thomas Schütte is organized by Paulina Pobocha, former Associate Curator, Department of Painting and Sculpture, MoMA and current Robert Soros Senior Curator at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; and Caitlin Chaisson, Curatorial Assistant, Department of Painting and Sculpture, MoMA.

 

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Thomas Schütte. Selbstportrait. 30/31.5.75 (Self-portrait: 5/30–31/75), 1975. Oil on nettle cloth. 23 5/8 × 17 11/16″ (60 × 45 cm). Collection the artist, Düsseldorf. Photo: Luise Heuter. © 2024 Thomas Schütte / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn

Thomas Schütte. Vater Staat (Father State), 2010 (detail). Patinated bronze. 149 5/8 × 61 × 55″ (380 × 154.9 × 139.7 cm). Anne Dias Griffin. Photo: Steven E. Gross. © 2024 Thomas Schütte / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn

Thomas Schütte. Untitled (United Enemies), 1994. Modeling clay, fabric, rope, and plastic pipe on wood pedestal with glass bell jar. 74 × 9 13/16 × 9 13/16″ (188 × 25 × 25 cm). De Pont Museum, Tilburg, Netherlands. Photo: Peter Cox. © 2024 Thomas Schütte / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn

Thomas Schütte. Blumen für Konrad (Flowers for Konrad), 1997–98. Watercolor on paper, one of 12 sheets. 15 3/8 × 11 7/16″ (39 × 29 cm). Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf. Gift of Dorothee and Konrad Fischer Collection 2015. Photo: bpk Bildagentur / Kunstsammlung Nordrhein Westfalen / Achim Kukulies / Art Resource, New York. © 2024 Thomas Schütte / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn

Thomas Schütte. Bronzefrau Nr. 17 (Bronze Woman No. 17), 2006. Patinated bronze on steel table. 80 3/8 × 49 1/4 × 98 1/2″ (204 × 125 × 250 cm). Art Institute of Chicago. Through prior gifts or bequests of Leo S. Guthman, Fowler McCormick, Albert A. Robin, Marguerita S. Ritman, Emily Crane Chadbourne, Florence S. McCormick, and Judith Neisser; purchased with funds provided by Per Skarstedt; 20th Century Purchase and Robert and Marlene Baumgarten funds. Photo: The Art Institute of Chicago / Art Resource, New York. © 2024 Thomas Schütte / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn

Thomas Schütte. Ackermans Tempel III (Modell 1:10) (Ackerman’s Temple III [Model 1:10]), 2011. LEGO bricks, wood, and aluminum. 19 1/8 × 17 5/8 × 23 1/16″ (45 × 44.7 × 60.7 cm). Collection the artist, Düsseldorf. Photo: Luise Heuter. © 2024 Thomas Schütte / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn

Thomas Schütte. Pringles, 2011. Pringles chip and matchbox. 1 3/8 × 1 7/8 × 2 3/4″ (3.5 × 4.8 × 7 cm). Collection the artist, Düsseldorf. Photo: Luise Heuter. © 2024 Thomas Schütte / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn