press release

For her first solo exhibition in France, Andrea Büttner introduces "Xerox Retrospective," a newly commissioned series of works, as well as the first European presentation of Piano Destructions.

In her work, emotions such as embarrassment or confusion are transformed into positive statements. Büttner freely embraces traditional skills and a conceptual approach; using mediums as varied as woodcutting, glass painting, sculpture, performance and video. Within this diversity of means, modesty always emerges and highlights the issue of aesthetic judgment. Her radical work translates into social, political and aesthetic subjects intertwined with the history of art and taste, often exploring religion, poverty, community, and sense of shame, considered by her as a creative force and an ethical way of viewing the world.

The exhibition includes the multiscreen installation Piano Destructions, gathering an exhaustive documentation of works by mainly male artists who, since the 1960s, have destroyed pianos as part of their practice. The gendered cacophony is placed in parallel to a video of a performance, where nine female pianists played nine pianos in unison at the Banff Center (Canada) in 2014.

With "Xerox Retrospective," Büttner offers a black and white journey in the museum’s entire graphic arts department, pulling together the invisible threads that connect her intellectual approach. She invites visitors to enter a vision of culture full of contrasts, where religious mendicant orders appear alongside figures such as Simone Weil or Chris Kraus.

Following the exhibition, an artist’s book will be co-published in 2017, presenting Büttner’s recent research into the iconography of beggars at the Warburg Institute in London.

Guest curator: Céline Kopp