Christoph Schlingensief, Mutters Maske (Mother’s Mask), 1987–88, 16 mm, color, sound, 85 minutes.


Christoph Schlingensief

KW Institute for Contemporary Art
Auguststrasse 69
January 1–February 1, 2013

Curated by Susanne Pfeffer with Klaus Biesenbach and Anna-Catharina Gebbers

Whereas the Fifty-Fourth Venice Biennale’s German pavilion staged a requiem for Christoph Schlingensief (1960–2010), this first retrospective dedicated to the auteur, theater maker, opera director, and performer promises to throw the relentless vitality of his boundary-crossing oeuvre into relief. The exhibition, which will remain open day and night for the show’s duration, will offer not only a rich selection of Schlingensief’s filmic works but also several impromptu contributions by his longtime collaborators—a plan poised to accommodate the artist’s patently idiosyncratic fusion of Actionism, Fluxus, “social sculpture,” and the inanities of spectacle culture. A catalogue with essays by the curators and Elfriede Jelinek, Tilda Swinton, and Alexander Kluge, among others, will further elucidate the tactics and legacy of this pivotal figure of postreunification Germany.