Paul Klee: “Irony at Work” Retrospective.. at the Centre Pompidou…


Paul Klee: L’Ironie à l’oeuvre” exhibition just opened in Paris’ Centre Pompidou

Considered one of the 20th century’s most iconic artists and a singular figure in modernity, Klee was a 3612-PAUL-KLEE-07_pics_390Swiss-German artist, born in 1879, whose highly individual style was influenced by art movements such as  Expressionism, Cubism, Constructivism, and Surrealism.
This is the first major Paul Klee retrospective in France since the 1969 exhibition at the Musée National d’Art Moderne.

Featuring around two hundred and fifty works loaned by the Zentrum Paul Klee in Bern and various major international and private collections, this Centre Pompidou retrospective aims to cast a fresh look on Klee’s work by shedding light on the way he used irony through an approach which has its sriimg20050429-5734017-0-dataorigins in early German Romanticism, constituting a “constant shift between a satire and the affirmation of an absolute, finite and infinite, real and ideal“.

This fascinating use of irony by the artist in his artworks was inspired by the philosopher Friedrich Schlegel: “Everything in it must be a joke, and everything must be serious: everything must be offered up with an open heart, and profoundly concealed.

The “Irony at Work” theme of the exhibition also extends to the examination of Klees relationship with, and inspiration by, his peers: most notably Wassily Kandinsky, Robert Delaunay, Maurice de Vlaminck, and Pablo Picasso, as well as the artistic movements of his time.

The exhibition is divided into seven thematic sections highlighting each stage in Klees artistic development: “Satirical beginnings“, which describes his early years; “Klee and Cubism“; “Mechanical theatre“, in line with Dada and Surrealism; “Klee and Constructivism“, his Bauhaus years in Dessau; “Looking back“, his 1930’s years; “Klee and Picasso“, which examines Klee’s reaction after the Picasso retrospective in Zurich in 1932; and “The crisis years“, marked by Nazi policies, war and illness.

img1940b2Organised in partnership with the Goethe-Institut of Paris and the Centre Allemand d’Histoire de l’Art, an international symposium on recent research into Klees work, featuring international specialists, is being held at the same venue on the 19th and 20th of May 2016.

The “Paul Klee: L’Ironie à l’oeuvre” retrospective is showing at the Centre Pompidou until the 1st of August, 2016.

Centre Pompidou
Place Georges-Pompidou
75004 Paris

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