curated by Sabine Schaschl
June 10 to September 12, 2021
Museum Haus Konstruktiv is the first museum in Switzerland to dedicate a solo exhibition to Dóra Maurer of Hungary. This retrospective solo show, realized in close cooperation with the artist, brings together printed graphics, photographs, films and paintings produced between 1970 and 2020. Maurer’s oeuvre is multifaceted, but is characterized in its entirety by a conceptual approach that examines processes of movement, displacement and perception in a manner that is as playful as it is systematic.
This overview show in Zurich is, in a way, a home game for Dóra Maurer: Born in 1937 in Budapest, she traveled to Switzerland at the age of just nine, and again as an elevenyear-old, on the so-called children’s trains organized by the Red Cross, which enabled her to recover from the hardships of war for three months at a time. According to the artist, these experiences had a lasting impact on her.
Since the early 1970s Dóra Maurer has been considered one of the most important and independent artists on the Hungarian art scene. In her activity as a professor at the Academy of Fine Arts in Budapest, and also as a curator, she still acts as a role model for many younger artists.
At the end of the 1960s, based on observations of nature and using her own physique, Dóra Maurer first developed graphic works, later followed by photographic and filmic works, which had nothing in common with the concept of art that was accepted at the time. Even in that early phase, she worked with a focus that was not on the completed artwork, but on the processual visualization of cognitive processes, which she generated by systematically shifting artistic placements inserted into (grid) structures.
Movement and displacement also characterize her geometric paintings: Maurer constructs her Displacements series and the resulting Quasi-Images with perspectival distortions, as well as superimpositions of forms and colors. It is precisely these perspectively curved, seemingly weightless image segments that irritate the eye of the observer, who is then motivated to reflect on their own seeing.
Dóra Maurer, Exhibition views Museum Haus Konstruktiv, 2021. Photo: Stefan Altenburger
We thank White Cube Gallery, London, and Vintage Galéria, Budapest, who contributed toward the realization of this exhibition.