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Belvedere dedicates a major solo exhibition to Louise Bourgeois – theartwolf

Louise Bourgeois - Fallen Woman - 1946-47

From 22 September 2023 to 28 January 2024, the Lower Belvedere presents Louise Bourgeois’s paintings from the 1940s in dialogue with a selection of sculptures, installations, drawings, and prints from all periods of her career.

Source: Belvedere · Image: Louise Bourgeois, FALLEN WOMAN (FEMME MAISON), 1946-47. Photo: Christopher Burke, © The Easton Foundation / Bildrecht, Vienna

In an oeuvre which covered a wide range of formal and material experimentation, Bourgeois succeeded in expressing contradictory impulses and binary oppositions – figuration and abstraction, male and female, conscious and unconscious – within a single work. By the 1990s, she had won global renown for her artistic achievements, becoming famous for her monumental spider sculptures and room-sized Cells. But it was in her oil paintings made between 1938 and 1949 that the French-American artist first developed the formal vocabulary and defined the thematic concerns that she would continue to explore over the following six decades.

The exhibition represents the first time these paintings will be exhibited as a body of work in Europe, and it is the first major exhibition of Bourgeois’s work in Vienna in a generation.

Louise Bourgeois (b. Paris, 1911, d. New York, 2010) is one of the most influential artists of the past century. Although she lived and worked in New York from 1938 until her death in 2010, much of her inspiration was derived from her childhood in France. Using the body as a primary form, Bourgeois explored the full range of human experience. From intimate drawings to room-sized installations, and in a variety of materials (including wood, marble, bronze, and fabric), she physically manifested her anxieties in order to exorcise them. Themes of love, fear, guilt, abandonment, and reconciliation are at the core of her complex oeuvre.

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