nuremburg

Rémy Zaugg

Kunsthalle Nürnberg

We’ve been accustomed to thinking of the visual concerns of abstract painting and the linguistic ones of Conceptual art as two distinct artistic territories. Rémy Zaugg’s language-oriented work of the ’80s and ’90s once led me to describe him as one of the few true “conceptual painters,” so it was something of a surprise to discover that the origins of his work lie in monochrome abstraction rather than conceptual investigations. This revealing exhibition was titled “Retrospektive, ein Fragment,” and while it spanned the arc of Zaugg’s career (the four earliest paintings were dated 1968–72, the most recent ones, 1990–97 or 1994–97), it did not attempt to survey the full range of his work; indeed, some of his best-known series were omitted. Instead, there was a heavy emphasis on his earliest efforts (twenty-eight of the forty-nine works were dated 1974 or earlier), to which were added

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