Invited Artists

Pawel_Althamer | Michael_Asher | Nairy_Baghramian | Guy_Ben-Ner | Guillaume_Bijl | Martin_Boyce | Jeremy Deller | Michael_Elmgreen und Ingar_Dragset | Hans-Peter_Feldmann | Dora_Garcia | Isa_Genzken | Dominique_Gonzalez-Foerster | Tue_Greenfort | David_Hammons | Valérie_Jouve | Mike_Kelley | Suchan Kinoshita | Marko_Lehanka | Gustav_Metzger | Eva_Meyer und Eran_Schaerf | Deimantas_Narkevicius | Bruce_Nauman | Maria_Pask | Manfred_Pernice | Susan_Philipsz | Martha_Rosler | Thomas_Schütte | Andreas_Siekmann | Rosemarie_Trockel | Silke_Wagner | Mark_Wallinger | Clemens von Wedemeyer | Annette_Wehrmann | Pae_White


archiv_77/87/97/07 | switch+ | Visual_concept



Bruce Nauman

* 1941 Fort Wayne/Indiana, USA, lives and works in Galisteo/New Mexico, USA

Project: Square Depression (Quadratische Senkung)

In 1977, Klaus Bußmann from the LWL-Landesmuseum had the idea for a sculpture exhibition; Kasper König invited nine artists to realize projects outdoors, thus taking art out of the museum and installing it in urban space. Bruce Nauman planned an outdoor sculpture for the campus of the university’s department of natural sciences: a walk-in object made of white concrete, its edges extending downwards and crossing at the lowest point in the center, from where an observer could only just glance over the sides. Finally realized for skulptur projekte münster 07, Nauman’s sculpture is the inverted pyramid. Square Depression is literally a square let into the ground, but – then as now – Bruce Nauman’s title for the work is a play on the word “depression”. Depressive, helpless, to be at someone’s mercy is how the spectators may feel when they stand at the center of this sculpture. It is about the formal qualities of space and the vanishing point; at the same time Square Depression represents the spatial construction of a psychological state below the level of the vanishing point. As a sculpture, Nauman’s work shows us just how much perspective can be regarded as constraint – and to what extent it can actually inflict violence. Square Depression is a staged threat, which now – upon its completion in the year 2007, thirty years after it was originally planned – is as haunting and topical as ever.


Bruce Nauman has been awarded virtually all honours and prizes in the international world of art. He participated at documenta in Kassel already five times (in 1968, 1972, 1977, 1982, and 1992), and twice in the Venice Biennale (in 1999 and 2005) and in the Lyon Biennale (in 1995 and 1997). Nauman's works were shown in individual exhibitions and retrospectives in the most important museums of the world, e.g. the New York Museum of Modern Art, Tate Gallery in London, the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia in Madrid, Kunsthaus Zuerich, and Hamburg Kunsthalle. Since the 1960s, Nauman's oeuvre has reflected different trends in art, including minimal art and conceptual art, performance and video. Language frequently plays an important part in his works. Nauman is convincing because of his focus on two themes: the role of the body as a medium, and space and the body's interplay with it. Nauman's architecture-related projects anticipate and incorporate the movements of the viewer, who reacts to the projects. For technical reasons, Nauman's works for the sculpture projects in 1977 and 1987 could not be exhibited. In 2007, we will exhibit the project he had made for sculpture projects 1977. We, thus, pay homage to an artist, whose influence on art has been considerable since 1960.

close | top