Matt Mullican, Untitled (Try and Beat This Mars), 1974, collage on paper, 8 3/4 x 11".


Matt Mullican

Haus der Kunst
Prinzregentenstrasse 1
June 10–September 11, 2011

Curated by Ulrich Wilmes

While other artists during the 1970s were busy exploring how media imagery marks our distance from the world—to use the parlance of the Pictures generation—Matt Mullican was considering the ways such representations are inevitably part of it. In fact, he decided to become a representation himself, regularly performing under hypnosis so that the often arbitrary conventions by which we evaluate experience became all the more apparent. As this retrospective seeks to organize nearly four decades of work that delves so deeply into the question of how we organize things and, most important, produce meaning for them, the Haus der Kunst’s galleries will brim with some eighty pieces, including gridded murals featuring exhaustive permutations of figurative images, as well as large installations whose objects and flowcharts make clear yet vertiginous leaps from sign and signified to system. Always one part object, one part projection, Mullican’s practice remains among the most intriguing, and discomfiting, today.