Franz Erhard Walther, 55 Handlungsbahnen (55 Action Paths), 1997–2003, sewn canvas. Installation view, Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain, Geneva, 2010. Photo: Ilmari Kalkkinen.


“Call to Action: Franz Erhard Walther”

The Power Plant
231 Queens Quay West
July 25–September 5

Curated by Gaëtane Verna

Despite Walther’s studies at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf in the early 1960s, a hotbed of European artistic talent that bred classmates such as Gerhard Richter; despite his subsequent four-year immersion in New York City, similar to stays that propelled fellow Germans such as Hanne Darboven to statewide institutional recognition; and despite his participation in seminal shows, including the Museum of Modern Art’s “Spaces” in 1969 and Harald Szeemann’s Documenta 5 in 1972, North America has still been slow to recognize Walther’s significance for the expansion of painting, for the convergence of art and design, and for time-, performance-, and (especially) participation-based art. This survey—which follows Walther’s presentation at Dia:Beacon six years ago and will include historic video documentation of the activation of his sculptures—may prove a game changer, at last.