THE ORGANIZERS of the elegant Blinky Palermo retrospective at the Kunsthalle Düsseldorf and the Kunstverein für die Rheinlande und Westfalen wasted no time in announcing their bold, materially focused agenda: At the entrance to the exhibition, visitors were greeted by a sequence of short videos featuring Palermo, whose own statements about abstraction introduced, in effect, the daring curatorial program within the galleries. In one segment, excerpted from a 1969 West German television broadcast, the young German artist declares to a group of Düsseldorf high school students: “When a square is well made, it’s simply good, and when it’s done poorly, it’s simply bad. You can see that, if they are presented side by side.”
Cocurators Ulrike Groos of the Kunsthalle, Vanessa Joan Müller of the Kunstverein, and independent curator and Palermo scholar Susanne Küper took Palermo at his word,
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