Three international heavyweights of the contemporary painting world are set to join forces at the Holstebro Museum, a show that will be titled as The Men Who Fell From Earth. The exhibition will feature Jonathan Meese, Daniel Richter and Tal R, three artists who made a name for themselves as significant innovators of the painting tradition. All known for their almost unrestrained energy, they decided to collaborate and see what they can achieve together. Beside featuring a film, The Men Who Fell From Earth show will also present individual paintings that clarify the current artistic standpoints of each painter involved.
The exhibition’s title is a slight reworking of the title of a book by US science fiction writer Walter Tevis, The Man Who Fell To Earth. In 1976, the novel was adapted for the screen by Nicolas Roeg in the cult film of the same name. The story of the book, and thus also the movie, depicts the corruption of both alien and human nature, highlighting the tendency to indulge in depravity and excess in a society that can offer literally anything. It speaks about the commercial greed and the brutal suppression of whatever is foreign in nature - this is what Jonathan Meese, Daniel Richter and Tal R are aiming to tackle with the show. For The Men Who Fell From Earth, artists also created a short film with surreal imagery, in which they perform together and recite from the above-mentioned original. This movie was directed by Emma Leth.
For all three artists featured in this show, the inspiration is often drawn from the borderline of what is commonly acceptable and thus results in fabulous imagery that demonstrates great coloristic and expressive strength. They are all also rather fond of using humor in their art despite the fact their themes are usually serious and require a certain level of urgency. The versatile artistic practice of Jonathan Meese contains numerous references to mythology, popular culture and the taboo sides of Germany’s past. Daniel Richter is one of the key figures in German contemporary art who has a background in the 1980s anarchist punk movement. His paintings portray the modern living conditions of human beings on the edge of society. Tal R is one of the most significant artists of his generation who exudes an apparently inexhaustible source of creativity and offbeat narrative.
Interestingly, Jonathan Meese, Daniel Richter and Tal R have never before collaborated on a joint exhibition project. However, The Men Who Fell from Earth will make up for the lack of their shared appearances and their artistic kinship will be clearly revealed. Created in a powerful spirit of artistic collegiality and friendship, The Men Who Fell from Earth will be shown between the 16th of September 2017 and 7th of January in 2018. Set to take place in Holstebro Museum in Holstebro, Denmark, the exhibition will be accompanied by a richly illustrated catalog with graphic design by Harpune Verlag.
Featured image: Photo of the three artists from the show The Men Who Fell from Earth, 2017, Photo © Hanna Putz. All images courtesy of Holstebro Museum.