Walid Raad

Cotton Under My Feet: The Hamburg Chapter

In cooperation with the Kampnagel International Summer Festival (10–27 August 2023), the Hamburger Kunsthalle is hosting in 2023 a project by the Lebanese-American artist Walid Raad. In the style of his presentation Cotton Under My Feet at the Museum Thyssen Bornemisza (2021/2022), Walid Raad is designing a parcours through the galleries where the Hamburger Kunsthalle’s permanent collection is on view. His interventions will document events in the history of the collection in narratives that are partly true and partly fictional. Juxtaposing existing exhibits with purported finds from the museum’s repositories, Raad thus spins new tales about how the collection came together. He will also display his own works alongside the collection objects, highlighting historically relevant details to uncover previously unknown facts about the history of the museum.

In walkthroughs that lead visitors through the historical galleries of the Kunsthalle from the Old Masters to the Transparent Museum, Raad will tell exciting anecdotes about the museum’s work that are by turns faithful and fictional. In the process, facts about acquisitions from the last century will be interwoven with present-day events.

For his project, the artist will work closely with the curators of the respective collections at the Hamburger Kunsthalle. His interventions in the galleries are based on close research into the history of the museum and its collection: Who is behind the various donations? What relationships do these acquisitions reveal?

Using video installations, his own works, picture frames and their backs, carpets and goblets (on loan from the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe), combined with paintings from the collection, Walid Raad recounts his very own history of the Hamburger Kunsthalle.


On selected dates during the exhibition, the artist himself will guide visitors through the Kunsthalle’s collection by way of walkthroughs. His lively narrations and interpretations will also be available to listen to in an app.

The artist

Born in 1967 in Chbanieh, Lebanon, Raad participated in documenta 11 and 13 and has had important solo exhibitions at the Museo Thyssen Bornemisza in Madrid, the Moderna Museet in Stockholm, the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, the Louvre in Paris, and MOMA in New York. Raad teaches at the Cooper Union and lives in New York. His works are in numerous international collections, including MOMA, New York; the TATE Modern, London; Museo Reina Sofia, Madrid; MUMOK, Museum Moderner Kunst, Vienna; and the Hamburger Kunsthalle.

Supported by: Hubertus Wald Stiftung, Rudolf Augstein Stiftung, ZEIT-Stiftung Ebelin und Gerd Bucerius

In collaboration with Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary.

WALID RAAD. Cotton under my Feet: The Hamburg Chapter

Walkthroughs with the artist through the Hamburger Kunsthalle

10 Aug - 12 Nov 2023, in cooperation with Kampnagel Sommerfestival
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Sonderveranstaltung | Walid Raad

ARTIST TALK _ WALID RAAD. Presentation by the artist of his long-term projects

Thur, 9 Nov 2023, 7 pm (in English)
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Walid Raad. Cotton Under My Feet

Exhibition catalogue Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid 2021/22

160 pages, Softcover, Verlag Walther König, in English, 25 €
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Walid Raad. Cotton under my Feet

Audiotour through the exhibition. Download for free on Hamburger Kunsthalle App

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