Current Exhibitions

KATHLEEN RYAN

KATHLEEN RYAN at the Hamburger Kunsthalle is the US artist’s (b. 1984) first museum exhibition in Germany. A selection of 30 sculptural works traces the evolution of Ryan’s artistic practice from 2014 to the present. Ryan crafts fascinating, mostly larger-than-life, monumental objects, including flowers, fruit, vegetables, jewellery, spider webs and flocks of birds, out of found, collected and reused materials ranging from pins, plastic beads and shells to fishing poles, rubber tires and car bonnets. The artist often chooses materials that are utterly at odds with the actual nature of the objects they represent: The mould on the skin of a peach – Bad Peach (Bite) from 2022 – is meticulously recreated with hundreds of semi-precious stones; the skin of oversized pieces of melon – Bad Melon (Big Chunk) from 2020 – is made from a dismantled Airstream motorhome; grapes – Bacchante from 2017 – are cast from heavy concrete; necklaces – Pearls from 2017 – are strung from bowling balls; and towering neoclassical columns, by contrast, are composed of filigree glazed ceramic plates – The Rise and Fall from 2014.

 

Ryan’s works evoke a mix of wonder, humour and disgust, prompting reflection on wealth and waste, decadence and decay, and the cycle of consumption and life. At the same time, the imaginative whimsy of the objects suggests the possibility of renewal and a second chance.

 

The exhibition space on the first floor of the Galerie der Gegenwart, with its windows running all around, offers an open and light-filled setting for discovering works that have never before been shown in Germany, some of them produced by the artist especially for the Hamburg show. Two of Ryan’s artworks are displayed above the large staircase at the historical main entrance to the Kunsthalle, where their surprising presence contrasts with the Wilhelminian-style interior.

A catalogue will be published during the course of the exhibition.

Kathleen Ryan (b. 1984 in Santa Monica, California, USA) lives and works in New York. She studied archaeology and art and completed the prestigious Master of Fine Arts program at the University of California, Los Angeles. Ryan’s work has been shown in solo and group exhibitions mainly in the USA. She was awarded the Rosa Schapire Art Prize by the Freunde der Kunsthalle e. V. in 2020.

Kathleen Ryan lives and works in New York. She was awarded the Rosa Schapire Art Prize of the Freunde der Kunsthalle e.V.  in 2020.

Supported by: Freunde der Kunsthalle e.V.

Current Exhibitions

Making History

Hans Makart and the Salon Painting of the 19th Century
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Current Exhibitions

Impressionism

Franco-German Encounters
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Eight Centuries of Art

The Permanent Collection of the Hamburger Kunsthalle
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Current Exhibitions

something new, something old, something desired

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Current Exhibitions

The Ephemeral Lake

A digital installation by Jakob Kudsk Steensen
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