“In the World But Don’t Know the World” (2019) by El Anatsui

 
On View presents images from noteworthy exhibitions
 

OVER THE PAST TWO DECADES, El Anatsui has invented and perfected a unique medium. With discarded bottle caps he creates grand sculptural works that read as painted textiles. “Triumphant” and monumentally scaled examples from his bottle-cap series form the basis of this exhibition, which is described as his largest-ever survey. The works on view date back half a century and span every medium in his oeuvre—bottle-cap textiles (2000s to present); wood sculptures and wall reliefs (mid-1970s to late 1990s); ceramic sculptures (late 1970s); and drawings, prints, and books. Born in Ghana and based in Nigeria, Anatsui also produced several new works for the exhibition, including an outdoor installation on the museum’s facade. CT

 

Co-curated by Okwui Enwezor (1963-2019) and Chika Okeke-Agulu, “El Anatsui: Triumphant Scale” is on view at Haus der Kunst, Munich, Germany, March 8-July 28, 2019

FIND MORE about the exhibition

 


EL ANATSUI, Installation view of “Second Wave,” 2019, Haus der Kunst Facade. | Photo by Jens Weber, München, Courtesy Haus de Kunst

 


EL ANATSUI, “Stressed World,” 2011 (aluminum and copper wire, 174 x 234 inches / 442 x 594.4 cm). | © El Anatsui. Courtesy the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York

 


EL ANATSUI, Installation view of “Tiled Flower Garden,” 2019, Haus der Kunst | Photo by Maximilian Geuter, Courtesy Haus der Kunst

 


EL ANATSUI, “Gbeze,” 1979 (ceramic, manganese). | © El Anatsui. Courtesy the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York Courtesy

 


EL ANATSUI, “Earth-Moon Connexions,” 1993 (wood, Tempera, 35.4 x 33.2 x 1.2 inches / 90 x 84,4 x 3 cm). | Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, Washington, D.C., Courtesy Haus der Kunst

 


Installation view of “Triumphant Scale,” 2019, Haus der Kunst, Munich. Shown from left, EL ANATSUI, “Dusasa II, ” 2007 (aluminum, copper wire and plastic disks), Collection of Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; and “Man’s Cloth,” 2001 (aluminum and copper wire), British Museum, London © The Trustees of the British Museum | Photo by Maximilian Geuter, Courtesy Haus der Kunst

 


This work inspired the title for El Anatsui’s Brooklyn Museum exhibition in 2013. Shown, EL ANATSUI, Installation view of “Gravity and Grace,” 2019, Haus der Kunst, Munich. | Collection of the Artist, Nsukka, Nigeria, © El Anatsui. Courtesy the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery. Photo by Maximilian Geuter, Courtesy Haus der Kunst

 


From left, EL ANATSUI, “Erosion,” 1992 (wood). | Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, Washington D.C.; and EL ANATSUI, “Leopard Cloth,” 1993 (wood Relief, Mansonia, Camwood Opepe & Oyili-oji, 63.8 x 27.2 x 1.3 inches / 162 x 69 x 3 cm). | Agnes and Andrew Usill Collection, London, Courtesy October Gallery, London

 


EL ANATSUI, Detail of “Rising Sea,” 2019 (aluminum and copper wire). | Photo by Maximilian Geuter, Courtesy Haus der Kunst

 


EL ANATSUI, Installation view of “Rising Sea,” 2019, Haus der Kunst, Munich. | Collection of the Artist, Nsukka, Nigeria, © El Anatsui. Courtesy of the Artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York. Photo by Maximilian Geuter, Courtesy Haus der Kunst

 


El Anatsui succinctly explains the collective power of his materials—found bottle caps. | Video by Haus der Kunst

 

TOP IMAGE: EL ANATSUI, Installation view of “In the World But Don’t Know the World,” 2019, Haus der Kunst, Munich. | Photo by Maximilian Geuter, Courtesy Haus der Kunst

 

BOOKSHELF
Haus der Kunst published a 15-page booklet to accompany the exhibition. Other recent publications include “El Anatsui: New Worlds,” which documents the artist’s exhibition at Mount Holyoke College Art Museum. From Prestel comes “El Anatsui: Art and Life.” Another volume, “El Anatsui: When I Last Wrote to You about Africa” accompanied the artist’s first career retrospective in 2011-12. “El Anatsui at the Clark” is authored by Chika Okeke-Agulu, who curated the artist’s current exhibition at Haus der Kunst. Meanwhile, “Second Careers: Two Tributaries in African Art” is forthcoming in 2020.

 

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