The self-portrait has long relinquished its position as an exclusive product of artistic subjectivity. Thanks to digital media and mobile technology, self-portraits have become commonplace and available to everyone. What can art offer in response to these ubiquitous self-portrayals? And how does it react to the alleged unity and representability of the subject, which 20th-century philosophers so vehemently repudiated?
The exhibition “ME” presented works by international artists that exemplify the iconoclastic process which the self-portrait genre is currently undergoing in contemporary art. The displayed works, ranging from conceptual pieces to photography, refuse to yield a representative reflection. The artists attempt to elude and ultimately escape the viewer. Günther Förg, for example, presented himself headless as he descends the stairs, Wolfgang Tillmans showed us just his knee, Pawel Althamer his clothes, Michael Sailstorfer formed his name in large letters, Sarah Lucas almost kicked the viewer in the face, while Florian Meisenberg could be observed via livestream from a smartphone. Although artistic subjectivity remains a leitmotif in contemporary art, we discover that it is no longer exclusively tied to the image of the artist.
Artistic director: Martina Weinhart
Artists: Pawel Althamer (PL), Joseph Beuys, John Bock, Abraham Cruzvillegas (MX), Alicja Kwade (PL), Sarah Lucas (UK), Jack Pierson (US), Dieter Roth (CH), Wolfgang Tillmans, Rosemarie Trockel and others