Bringing together major works by some of the most influential European and American artists of the post-war and contemporary periods, Alchemy examines the enduring fascination with material transformation and alchemical thinking in artmaking. The group exhibition features works by artists who have engaged with alchemical ideas at key moments in their practice, including Joseph Beuys, Anselm Kiefer, Sigmar Polke, Robert Rauschenberg, Sturtevant, Emilio Vedova and Andy Warhol. Assembling a group of art-historically significant works, including many shown for the first time in the UK, the exhibition highlights how ideas of material, artistic and philosophical transmutation both inform and are redefined by, these pioneers of art.
While typically associated with the quest to transform base metals into gold or find a universal cure for disease, alchemy has accrued rich material and symbolic associations as it has evolved across different cultural and temporal contexts. Known as the ‘Great Art’ (Ars Magna), it has provided rich subject matter for artists across the centuries, from Albrecht Dürer to 20th-century Surrealists. Conceiving the artist’s studio as a laboratory, this exhibition explores the legacies of alchemy through the distinct perspectives of each artist as they undertake experimental modes of engaging with the world around them.
|26 May 2023 - 29 July 2023
|Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac
|Ely House, 37 Dover Street, London, W1S 4NJ
|4402038138400 / email@example.com / www.ropac.net