Ai Weiwei at K20 and K21

"Everything is art. Everything is politics": with these words, the internationally acclaimed contemporary artist Ai Weiwei encapsulates the basic principle of his working approach. This motto is also the leitmotif of his largest exhibition in Europe to date, which is on view simultaneously at the K20 and the K21 of the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen until 1 September.

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"Best Friends" at K20 until July 7

Since 1969, the Gesellschaft der Freunde (Association of Friends) of the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen e.V. has been an invaluable and reliable supporter of the museum. Through purchases, the Freundeskreis has expanded the collection, and has assisted with the financing of exhibitions. By covering the greater portion of the building costs, the Freundeskreis has made possible extension structures such as the Klee Halle and the Henkel Galerie, of such enormous importance to the Kunstsammlung. For a half century now, the museum and the Freundeskreis have been "Best Friends." This presentation will be on view until July 7, 2019, at K20.

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Opening: Banu Cennetoğlu at K21

Opening on July 6, the Kunstsammlung will present the work of artist Banu Cennetoğlu at K21. At the center of her exhibition, Banu Cennetoğlu presents two sprawling installations that reflect on the formation, circulation and archiving of private and public information and the underlying political, social, and cultural mechanisms. The first two rooms of the Bel Etage are taken up by six newspaper archives (2010-2015). A multi-titled moving-image installation is presented in the third room, showing an accumulation of unfiltered audiovisual data: the unedited chronological stream of the artist’s content in the projection with a running time of about 128 hours lays out her complete visual archive aggregated on hard drives, cameras, and cell phones from June 10, 2006, until March 21, 2018. Banu Cennetoğlu (* 1970, Ankara) lives and works in Istanbul. The Opening on July 5 will be followed by an artist talk and a barbecue at Kaiserteich, K21.

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On Display: Collection at K20

After renovation, the permanent collection on the upper floor is now opened. The "Robert Rademacher Galerie" is presenting american art after 1945 as well as works by Gerhard Richter and Katharina Sieverding and new acquisitions such as Carmen Herrera. The exhibition "Beste Freunde" (Best Friends, on display until July 7, 2019) is presenting major acquisitions made by the Freundeskreis of Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, including works by Amedeo Modigliani, Max Ernst and Francis Bacon, by Ad Reinhard, Robert Rauschenberg, Gerhard Richter and Günther Uecker, by Bernd and Hilla Becher, Thomas Struth, and many others.

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Collection of contemporary art at K21

The K21 is the museum of contemporary art of the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen. The presentation of the permanent collection in the 2nd and 3rd stories will feature works from the late 1980s onward (Marina Abramovic, Paul McCarthy, Katharina Fritsch, Robert Gober, Maria Lassnig, Rosemarie Trockel, Thomas Ruff, Thomas Schütte, Wael Shawky, Ana Torfs, Akram Zaatari and many others).

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"in orbit": installation by Tomás Saraceno at K21

Suspended more than 25 meters above the piazza of the K21 is Tomás Saraceno‘s gigantic installation in orbit. This steel wire construction spans the museum‘s vast glass cupola on three different levels. Positioned within this net structure, which encompasses altogether 2500 m², are half a dozen "spheres" – inflated spheres having diameters up to 8.5 meters. Visitors have access to this transparent installation, and can move freely between the spheres on all three levels. Please note, that the installation may be closed for visitors temporarily due to maintenance works. Current information: "opening hours" on this site and Visitor's information via phone +49 (0)211. 83 81-204.

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Exhibition Catalog "Ai Weiwei"

Accompanying the exhibition of Ai Weiwei is an extensive catalog whose five chapters offer insights into the production and genesis of Ai Weiwei’s oeuvre over the past four decades. Alongside a recent interview conducted by Hans Ulrich Obrist, the essays address issues such as the “Aesthetics of Quantity” (Falk Wolf), the “boxed part of the unboxed exhibition,” the installation “Straight” (Rembert Hüser), and issues of identity and self-staging in the work of Ai Weiwei (Doris Krystof). Editors: Susanne Gaensheimer, Doris Krystof, Falk Wolf Prestel Verlag München. London. New York, gatefold paperback, 256 pages, 20 x 28 cm, 230 color illustrations. With contributions by Rembert Hüser, Doris Krystof, Friederike Sigler, Linda Walther, and Falk Wolf and an interview with Hans Ulrich Obrist.

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