WIFREDO LAM: RETROSPECTIVE
with reconstructions from 1940’s designs
by Frederick Kiesler
Regents Park, London
October 17 – 20, 2013
Galerie Gmurzynska is pleased to announce a retrospective exhibition of historic
proportions by Wifredo Lam for their participation at Frieze Masters, London from
October 17 – 20, 2013. Installed in an environment based on designs by Frederick
Kiesler, the exhibition will be a career spanning survey of Lam’s groundbreaking
Wifredo Lam (1902–1982) was a central figure of twentieth century art. He
integrated himself into every major artistic circle and movement of much of the
twentieth century. He greatly inspired Picasso, was a member of the Surrealist
movement and also explored alternatives to the abstract expressionism of the
1950’s. Lam participated in the most important international exhibitions of his time
such as 'documenta' II and III in Kassel, Germany and the Venice Biennale in 1972.
Frederick Kiesler (1890–1965) was an architect, exhibition designer and artist
responsible for changing standard notions of how we display art. Kiesler is most
well known for his designs for Peggy Guggenheim’s museum-gallery, Art of this
Century (1942–1947), as well as his influential designs for important Surrealist
exhibitions including ‘Bloodflames 1947’ (Hugo Gallery, 1947).
Galerie Gmurzynska’s installation at Frieze Masters revisits Kiesler’s designs for
‘Bloodflames 1947’, the important international Surrealism exhibition held at the
Hugo Gallery in New York in 1947 as well as utilising quotes connected to his
design for the Surrealist Gallery at Peggy Guggenheim’s Art of this Century
exhibition space. This is the first time that these designs have been recreated.
Wifredo Lam was a vital part of Guggenheim’s legendary collection and Kiesler’s
design for her Surrealist gallery is considered one of the cornerstones of mid-20th
century art. Galerie Gmurzynska will be presenting Lam’s work on similar iconic
floating curved walls inspired by Kiesler’s designs.
Curated by noted art critic Nicolas Calas, ‘Bloodflames 1947’ was the last exhibition
of the Surrealist group in New York and heavily focused on the work of Wifredo
Lam. Designed by Kiesler, ‘Bloodflames 1947’ was a major avant-garde exhibition;
its focus piece was a curtained area where one could recline and contemplate a
work by Lam, which was hung on the ceiling. This curtained area will be recreated
with Kiesler furnishings for Galerie Gmurzynska’s Frieze Masters presentation.
The exhibition was organized by Galerie Gmurzynska in cooperation with the Estate
of Wifredo Lam and the Austrian Frederick and Lillian Kiesler Private Foundation,
A portfolio on the ‘Bloodflames 1947’ exhibition will be published by Galerie
Gmurzynska on the occasion of this exhibition, featuring documentary images,
articles and texts showing the important contemporary reaction to this exhibition
and the influence of Wifredo Lam’s work on its continued influence.
A major monograph will also be published, it will be extensively illustrated with
documentary images, many never before published.