Gallerynote 3/2006

May 18 to July 8, 2006

RICHARD TUTTLE (*1941 USA), Looks Talks Walks – Three Windows .
The major retrospective shown in 2005 in San Francisco, then in New York, is still en route. Des Moines, Dallas, Chicago and, in 2007, Los Angeles are the further stops along the journey. Exhibition and catalogue testify to a life's work. Art that doesn't disappear in the wake of the moment. The seeing and becoming acquainted with the works, becoming reacquainted, the unfolding of the oeuvre, substantial and not yet concluded, make for an exceptional art event. The encounter with an unlikely masterful brilliance.

Our exhibition yet again introduces something new that cannot be preempted by a description. Hence, this text from 1990, written for the catalogue of the ICA, Amsterdam:

"Fraught with serious consequences, the sixties breathed their last, and a truly new spirit heralded the seventies: due less to any impending artistic revolution than to the discovery of links with the respectable and respected everywhere. The border between the craft of art and of life was breached, though. The heroic categories of 'painting' and 'sculpture' and heroic, rapt artisthood vanished. Somewhere between performance and exhibition became the field of action for these new media and for artistic figures who like itinerant preachers and the purveyors of art pursued this kind of free existence. Names and products were cloaked in secrecy, between idea and work. Definitive forms of artworks were thing of the past. New avenues of access held out a fascinating lure. Once again, surprise and adventure were the needs of the moment. There was no room for any of this in a traditional bourgois cultural establishment. Somewhere in the thus created climate sounded the tidings of a mysterious bearer of happiness who knew exactly where and how to place his sometimes fragile, barely visible interventions. In 1969 his name appeared in that momentous exhibition in the Berne Kunsthalle. It was echoed more strongly in 1972, in the Kunstraum München. Typically, the records of these shows were kept in Leitz-files. The artist, scarcely thirty years old at the time, featured prominently on the covers of Artforum (1970) and Arts Magazine (1972). His works consisted largely of materials with a flexible, mobile appearance, lacking a definitive form and position. At the 1972 Documenta his wire work(s) were a revelation. Here were objects which on the one hand were completely selfevident and convincing, consisting purely of themselves so to speak, but which on the other hand were intrinsically self-destructive. Place was always a vital aspect of these works, whose very presence developed from and for a particular place. What were the latent criteria here, between the present and eternity ?

All these attributes coincided with the dreams and space we envisaged for our gallery.
In 1974 we moved into new premises in the centre of Zurich. This prompted Richard to combine his and our new departures, something he has done on subsequent occasions too.
'Heavy Wire Pieces', one on each wall, were the exhibits in this splendid show (May 17–June 28, 1974). It was clearly the beginning of a path which skirted all preestablished conventions. Anyone attempting to pursue this path can only do so as a companion, always a step behind, letting the unknown take its course. Not doing, but being done unto, perhaps in order to realize that this is the only way to experience what has not yet happened and need not necessarily happen."


Richard Tuttle – Domaine de Kerguéhennec, Bignan, France through June 18th, 2006.
Joseph Egan – careful, careless, tried and true, Elisabeth-Schneider-Stiftung Freiburg/Breisgau Germany, through July 15th, 2006