Jürgen Klauke

Badischer Kunstverein

Jurgen Klauke is considered one of the most important artists of the Federal Republic, yet until now no show of his has attempted to present simultaneously all three of the areas in which he works—photography, performance, and drawing. This traveling retrospective (later to be seen in Hamburg, Rotterdam, and Cologne), titled “Eine Ewigheit ein Lächeln” (An eternity a smile), made up for this.

“The struggle with oneself is always an existential conflict that must end in defeat,” writes Evelyn Weiss in the show’s catalogue. Klauke’s Sisyphean preoccupation with himself has become most prevalent throughout the course of his work. As he titled one work, Alleinsein ist eine Erfahrung von immer weniger (Loneliness is an experience of fewer and fewer, 1975). He works against the persistence of false pathos, with latent aggression conveyed to the viewer through minutely preplanned ritualized actions.

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