Monica Bonvicini, Off the Grid (rage), 2011. Black tempera on paper. 271 x 364 cm photo: Def Image. Courtesy by the Artist.

Monica Bonvicini, Drawings and Plans on the Way to Installation and Video

Monica Bonvicini, Needle Knows, 2012. (Detail). Embroidery on US letter-paper 21.7 x 28 cm. photo: Jan Ralske. Courtesy by The Artist

Monica Bonvicini, Bedtimesquare (#1), 1999. Collage on paper. 43.5 x 58.5 cm photo: Def Image. Courtesy by the Artist.

Monica Bonvicini, Hurricane and Other Catastrophes ( #1), 2008. Black Tempera and spray paint on paper. 150 x 189.6 cm. photo: Jochen Littkemann Courtesy by the Artist.

Monica Bonvicini, Architecture is…, 2002. Ink on paper. 160 x 141 cm. photo: Roberto Marossi. Courtesy of the Artist.


Deichterhallen Hamburg
Deichtorstrasse 1-2
+ 49 (0)40 32103-0
Falckenberg Collection, Hamburg-Harburg
Monica Bonvicini
Desire Desiese Devise – Drawings

September 7-November 18, 2012

»Monica Bonvicini. Desire Desiese Devise – Zeichnungen« is the first anthological presentation of the comprehensive production of drawings, collage- and text works in the Italian artist’s oeuvre. They are being shown by the Falckenberg Collection of the Deichtorhallen in Harburg, nr. Hamburg in cooperation with the Städtisches Museum Abteiberg in Mönchengladbach. Born in 1965 in Venice and now living in Berlin, Monica Bonvicini has since the mid 1980s produced an immense volume of drawings. Specifically, these are sketches, plans and concepts that resulted in her world famous sculptural, installation and film-based works but also graphic series, which form an independent part of her work, and are acknowledged as such for the first time.

Known for her expansive and often provocative installations, works for public space, sculptures and video works, Monica Bonvicini is one of the most internationally significant artists of her generation, and her exploration of the medium of drawing is fascinating. Her output here ranges from delicate sketches and designs on paper (of which several were realized as sculptures or installations) through various types of text pieces and collages and illustrative, comic-like motifs to large-format drawings. The exhibition demonstrates the process-like aspect in the oeuvre of the artist, who studied painting 1986 to 1993 at the Academy of the Arts (HdK/UdK) Berlin and the California Institute of the Arts. The scope of drawings in the exhibition extends from transient and ephemeral gesture through to aggressive act – with both aspects not only occurring simultaneously but also having equal value. The large-format, black-white tempera works, the hard expressiveness of the medium drawing stand out here but equally the sensitive and humorous in many sketches not shown previously.

For many installations and sculptures Bonvicini produced design drawings, detailed drawings and notes in which the development of her works and deas on space and location but also (gender-) political conditions emerge. Series of collages that evolved as preparation for installations permit an insight into her analysis of the social balance of power, as it is manifested in architecture, language, sexuality and fetishism. Her eclectic interests are reflected in the various media, styles and materials: image- and text citations from advertising, the history of art and architecture and theory, music and poetry become interwoven in a virtuosity that can be located between elegance and punk.

Aside from a selection of large-format works such as the series of »Hurricanes and other Catastrophes«, the »Places of IDs« and the »Spray Drawings« the exhibition also shows »Kill your Father«, a 63-part block of drawings in red tempera and felt pen with quotes, slogans and stylized representations of knotted chains, which confronts visitors like a grid frame. Moreover, for the first time a group of drawings on tracing paper will be presented, which was produced as preparation for her contribution to the 54th International Biennial in Venice (2011) »15 Steps to the Virgin«, plus various series of paper works from almost 25 years of artistic activity.

Catalogue Edited by the Museum Abteiberg Mönchengladbach and Deichtorhallen Hamburg; with a foreword by Susanne Titz and Dirk Luckow and essays by Susanne Titz, Harald Falckenberg as well as an interview with Monica Bonvicini by Laurence Wiener. 354 pages with 800 illustrations, 58 Euro.

Monica Bonvicini, Untitled (Harness), 2010. Mixed Media on tracing paper. 95 x 77.5 cm. photo: Def Image. Courtesy by the Artist.

Monica Bonvicini, Untitled, 2004. Ink on paper. 150 x 90.5 cm. photo: Def Image Courtesy by the Artist.

Monica Bonvicini, Desire, 2006. diptych. Black Tempera and collage on paper 200 x 300 cm. photo: Fredrik Nilsen. Collection: Museum of Modern Art, New York.