Works By Dirk Skreber Coming to Milwaukee

Posted on October 15th, 2013

Milwaukee Art Museum showcases beauty, complexity of catastrophe
Works by Dirk Skreber to be shown in Contemporary Galleries

Milwaukee, Wis. – On November 7, 2013, the Milwaukee Art Museum opens an exhibition of contemporary art by German artist Dirk Skreber, best known for his exquisite depictions of crashed cars. Currents 36: Dirk Skreber will include several of the artist’s large-scale paintings, a monumental outdoor sculpture, and the American museum debut of his video work Turgidity (2012).

“We are excited to bring Skreber’s work into our Contemporary Galleries, and in fact throughout the Museum campus,” said Brady Roberts, chief curator for the Milwaukee Art Museum. “Visitors will be blown away by what they experience.”

Skreber has developed an international reputation for paintings that challenge seemingly contradictory ideas, such as abstraction and figuration, beauty and catastrophe.

“His paintings leave you with an uneasy feeling, as though you are witnessing something meant to be private or sacred, and yet they are without emotional commentary,” said Margaret Andera, adjunct curator for the Milwaukee Art Museum.

Skreber’s sculptures, including the one that will be on view at the Museum, are often of automobiles wrapped concussively around poles—carefully choreographed destruction created in a safety testing facility. Skreber’s film Turgidity echoes this work and depicts a car crashing in slow motion, a strangely beautiful sequence, with shifts in light and matter.

“His sculptures and his film transform a familiar form into an abstract jumble of metal, glass, and rubber; but like Skreber’s paintings, the sculpture is presented in a neutral way, making them all the more disconcerting,” said Andera.

Currents 36: Dirk Skreber is curated by Margaret Andera, adjunct curator at the Milwaukee Art Museum, and will be on view in the Museum’s Contemporary Galleries from November 7, 2013, through March 2, 2014.

Celebrating its 125th anniversary in 2013, the Milwaukee Art Museum houses a rich collection of over 30,000 works, with strengths in 19th- and 20th-century American and European art, contemporary art, American decorative arts, and folk and self-taught art. The Museum campus is located on the shores of Lake Michigan and spans three buildings, including the Santiago Calatrava-designed Quadracci Pavilion and the Eero Saarinen-designed Milwaukee County War Memorial Center. For more information, please visit mam.org.