Per Kirkeby, Flugten til AEgypten (Flight to Egypt), 1996, oil on canvas, 9' 10“ x 13' 1 1/2”.


Per Kirkeby

Louisiana Museum of Modern Art
Gl. Strandvej 13
September 2–January 25

Curated by Poul Erik Tøjner

Timed to coincide with Per Kirkeby’s seventieth birthday, this major exhibition asserts the importance of the Danish artist’s work from the 1970s through today, with a hundred paintings, fifty sculptures, and a catalogue that includes essays by Richard Shiff, Robert Storr, and Ulrich Wilmes. Shifting away from overheated interpretations of gestural painting and the local CoBrA legacy, the show makes the case for Kirkeby as a method man, not a modern primitive. An independently organized show of the artist’s sketches, notebooks, photographs, and other archival material two hundred miles away at the ARoS Aarhus Kunstmuseum (from September 13 to November 30) should corroborate such a reading by illuminating the sources of his repeating themes and emblems. Happy birthday, Per Kirkeby.