Gerhard Richter: Engadin
Nietzsche-Haus, Sils; Segantini Museum, St. Moritz; and Hauser & Wirth St. Moritz present a joint exhibition: ‘Gerhard Richter: Engadin’, curated by Dieter Schwarz and on view from 16 December 2023 – 13 April 2024.
Sils is a traditional Swiss Alpine village in the upper Engadin region not too far from the Italian border. When Gerhard Richter, born in 1932, first visited the town in 1989, he had an immediate connection to the area and has continued to regularly visit for over 25-years. Over the years, the wild and poetic landscape of Sils has formed an important part of Richter’s artistic career as well, with an extensive range of work – from paintings to objects – dedicated to his long-standing fascination with this Alpine valley landscape.
‘Gerhard Richter: Engadin’ will be the first exhibition to explore Richter’s deep connection with the region. Curated by Daniel Schwarz, the exhibition takes place across three gallery spaces: the Nietzsche-Haus in Sils, and the Segantini Museum and Hauser & Wirth gallery in nearby St. Moritz, and brings over seventy works from museums and private collections – including paintings, overpainted photographs, drawings and objects. Schwarz, the former director of the Kunst Museum Winterthur is considered a specialist in Richter’s work having curated several exhibitions, authoring the catalogue raisonné of his drawings, in addition to writing numerous texts.
A steel sphere that Richter produced as an edition in 1992, will be on view at each of the three venues as a way of linking them together. This work was first presented in 1992 at Nietzche-Haus, in an exhibition curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist. Each sphere bears the name of a mountain in the Upper Engadin and its subtly reflective surface is meant to symbolize the sublime yet inhospitable manifestations of nature, which are particularly relevant to being in the mountains. During this exhibition in 1992, Richter also presented for the first time, a series of small-scale overpainted photographs in which he merged paint with image, giving way to an entirely new type of pictorial landscape. More than fifty of these works will be on view in the St. Moritz venues along with the maquette of his artist’s book ‘Sils’ (1992), which originally presented the photographs. In addition to these overpainted photographs, the Sengantini Museum and Hauser & Wirth will present paintings created from photographs taken during his hikes and which marked a new chapter in Richter’s landscape painting. Influences of 19th century painting as well as abstraction along with melancholic imagery and ambiguity infuse these paintings. At the Nietzsche-Haus, 39 photographs that Richter took in Sils for ‘Dezember (December)’ – a book made in collaboration with writer and filmmaker Alexander Kluge and published in 2010, will be exhibited. The unique pairing of image and text takes viewers on an intimate journey of the surrounding landscape.
The show is accompanied by a catalogue published by Hauser & Wirth Publishers, with images of the works on display and an essay by Dieter Schwarz. It has been produced in collaboration with the Segantini Museum and Nietzsche-Haus.
‘Gerhard Richter: Engadin’, Nietzsche-Haus, Sils Maria; Segantini Museum, St. Moritz; and Hauser & Wirth, St. Moritz. 16 December 2023 – 13 April 2024