These are the current exhibitions in North Rhine-Westphalia in 2022

On display this summer at K20 and K21 in Düsseldorf: concrete art by the Brazilian artist Lygia Pape and photography as a reflection of historical and cultural changes in the field of gender and racial issues, with a focus on Africa. The Max Ernst Museum in Brühl presents a retrospective of the intriguing work of Karin Kneffel.

Concrete Art by Lygia Pape from Brazil

Lygia Pape (1927 – 2004) was a visual artist, sculptor, engraver and filmmaker. She was one of the most important representatives of the Brazilian avant-garde in the fifties and sixties. In the early 1950s, Pape broke through with work in the tradition of European concrete art, but she rejected the purely rationalist approach of this movement. She focused not only on concrete things and their coherence, but also on the essence of things, from an intuitive, open attitude. The exhibition The Skin of ALL at K20 presents the diverse work of this extraordinary artist while paying tribute to Pape as an important and enriching voice in the worldwide development of modern art. On display are mainly loans from international collections and the artist’s estate. K20 in Düsseldorf – until July 17, 2022

Changing dialogues. Photos from The Walther Collection

How are historical and cultural changes reflected in the medium of photography? That is what the exhibition Changing Dialogues is about. Photos from The Walther Collection. More than ten years after the first exhibition of The Walther Collection, the Kunstsammlung NRW considers the time ripe for a sequel. The pioneering work of the then curator, Okwui Enwezor, and the exceptional efforts of the collector Artur Walther made an indelible impression at the time. By means of portrait photography, Enwezor showed that the developments within photography are not uniform geographically and historically.

For example, he tried to provide insight into the changes in African identity on the road from colonialism to postcolonial modernity. In the current exhibition, historical dialogues are accompanied by queer-performative portraits by Rotimi Fani-Kayode (1955-1989), but also by work by conceptual photographers such as Yto Barrada, Samuel Fosso, Sabelo Mlangeni, Zanele Muholi, Mwangi Hutter, Grace Ndiritu and Berni Seal. Influenced by visual activism and a subversive agenda, the works, mainly created in the early 2000s, question the binary gender system, cultural appropriation and structural racism. K21 Ständehaus in Düsseldorf – until September 25, 2022

Karin Kneffel – Im Augenblick

Karin Kneffel may not be well known in the Netherlands, but in Germany she is one of the leading representatives of German contemporary art. A good reason to get acquainted with her intriguing work. The Max Ernst Museum in Brühl is home to a wonderful retrospective. No fewer than 80 oil paintings and watercolors show the creative development from 2004 to the present.

In Karin Kneffel’s work, different levels of time and perception overlap. Illusion and reality, past and present, objectivity and dreamy alienation flow into each other and create an almost surrealistic experience. The works have a tangible appearance and are designed with the greatest perfection. And yet Kneffel’s paintings remain mysteriously closed and distant. Max Ernst Museum Brühl des LVR – until August 28, 2022

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