Probably not in the Show
Louise Lawler's photographs show artworks in their environment: as objects in exhibitions, in private or public collections, at auctions, in store-rooms, archives, or galleries. Lawler selects her motifs in such a way that numerous details become visible. In some cases it's the specific arrangement within an exhibition space or the home of a collector, in others it's a particular view of the wall on which the picture is hanging, the frame, or the title plate. Completed artworks of other artists are at the centre of Lawler's works. She is, however, less interested in the original process of creating a work of art than in the context lying beyond the artist's sphere of influence and in which the work is subsequently situated. In viewing Lawler's photographs, it also becomes clear, often in an ironic way, to what extent the meaning of art is shifted on account of the specific surroundings in which it is displayed and perceived.
With her critical questioning of the concept of an artwork, as well as of the institutional presentation of art and representation through art, Louise Lawler, since the beginning of the 1980s, counts as one of the most significant representatives of American concept art.
In her installation at Portikus called "PROBABLY NOT IN THE SHOW", Louise Lawler will show a series of new photographs, all taken in various art institutions during the dismantling of exhibitions, for example when last year's Gerhard Richter retrospective was taken down in New York's Museum of Modern Art. Through her documentary view of art history, Lawler also succeeds in making a subtle reference to Portikus' exhibition history. It was precisely Gerhard Richter who, in 1989, caused quite a stir with the presentation of his cycle "18. Oktober 1977" at Portikus. With the motif of dismantling an exhibition, Louise Lawler anticipates the upcoming move of Portikus. Her exhibit at Portikus will be augmented by a series of posters in public space - Portikus as an institution will also shift its exhibition activities to various sites in the city until its new venue is completed.
Louise Lawler (born in 1947) lives and works in New York.
The exhibition is supported by Bloomberg