The great summer exhibition at the Fondation Beyeler promises to be a highlight in the European
cultural calendar. It is devoted to the Swiss artist Alberto Giacometti (1901-1966), who, in Paris,
became one of the most influential of modern artists. His seemingly fragile figures in which the
human form is reduced to the essentials, his virtually sculpted paintings, and his concentrated
drawings are still capable of deeply moving all who see them. Giacometti viewed himself as part
of a spacetime cosmos in which his family members were key points of reference. For this reason,
one of the exhibition’s emphases is on the artist’s involvement with the appearance of figures
in space and the perception and representation of bodies in motion.
On view will be about 150 major
works from every phase of the oeuvre, from the family collection as well as renowned collections
around the world. These will be supplemented by works by Giacometti’s father, Giovanni (1868-1933),
his brother, Diego (1902-1985), and his uncle, Augusto (1877-1947). An important role is also played
by Alberto’s mother, Annetta, and his wife, Annette, whom he frequently portrayed.
Ernst Beyeler deserves great credit for the way in which he concerned himself with the work of
his friend Alberto Giacometti, among other things by materially contributing to the establishment
of the Giacometti Foundation in Zurich in the 1960s. The artist is represented in the Ernst
and Hildy Beyeler Collection with exemplary works from his visionary late phase. Among the most
famous is the ensemble designed for the Chase Manhattan Plaza. The well-known sculpture Homme
qui marche (Walking Man)
, 1960, has since become a veritable trademark of the Fondation Beyeler,
indeed of Ernst Beyeler himself.
The exhibition was organized in collaboration with the Alberto Giacometti Foundation, Zurich,
and the Fondation Alberto et Annette Giacometti, Paris. Exhibition curator is Ulf Küster.
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