Kunsthalle Würth, Schwäbisch Hall
March 12 – November 5, 2023
10 a.m. - 6 p.m. daily
"No one can say for certain how many plants there are." Many of them are threatened with extinction, yet still new ones are being discovered every day, wrote Kathy Willis, Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, London, in 2017. Scientists estimate the number of plant species worldwide at about 300,000 to 400,000. Many of them flourish under extreme conditions or develop continually in reaction to changing circumstances and challenges.
Floral diversity is great in the Würth Collection as well. In addition to the about 150 highly prominent selected works of modern and contemporary art from the Würth Collection, two Far Eastern complexes of loans and an extensive supplemental program mark the thematic and aesthetic range of the exhibition.
Vases full of magnificent bouquets in Lovis Corinth, Gabriele Münter or Emil Nolde, blossoming meadows in Philipp Bauknecht, Franz Marc or Alex Katz, enchanted artists' gardens in David Hockney, Per Kirkeby or Andy Warhol, painsstakingly archived "herbariums" in Herman de Vries, but also indications of a dystopian world in Marc Quinn or Anselm Kiefer - all of these examples show that artists' involvement with the botanic realm not only lead to symbols of creaturely sensuousness but to documents of a continuing cultural change of meaning. Its symbolic and philosophical, political, decorative, scientific and ecological aspects form the substantial framework of the coming special exhibition at the Kunsthalle Würth.
An exceptional selection of contemporary Japanese bamboo baskets from the Naej Collection - a leading private collection in this field - draws attention to an art form little known in the West.
In addition, the Tokyo flower artist Azuma Makoto, renowned for his experimental floral creations, will design a plant sculpture from local flowers at the Kunsthalle Würth. Over the course of the exhibition it will blossom, wilt and revive, conveying, apart from the idea of vanitas, the harmonies and abtractions of Japanese floral art.
Max Ernst, Les plantes (Die Pflanzen/ The Plants),1929, Oil on canvas, 81 x 65 cm, Würth Collection Inv. 9202
Franz Marc, Grüne Studie (Green Study), 1908, Würth Collection, Inv. 18558