ULAY: From Berlin to Paris

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Curated by Hana Ostan Ožbolt

In the current social-political setting, in which movement is more limited than ever, and human bodies are restricted by physical distancing, ‘ULAY: From Berlin to Paris' focuses on two different displays of ULAY’s physical and mental stamina – one in Berlin and one in Paris.

This online exhibition, part of the gallery’s series Saltoun Online, features two important pieces by the late performance artist Ulay (1943–2020): Irritation - There is a Criminal Touch to Art (1976) and Relation in Movement (1977).

ULAY
Irritation - There is a Criminal Touch to Art, 1976
Set of 11 analogue Baryta prints with film, printed 2018
Single channel video, 16 mm film transferred to digital, B&W, sound, 27 min 51 sec
Each print: 61.5 x 45 cm
Edition 7 of 10 + 2 AP

Courtesy ULAY Foundation, LIMA, Amsterdam and Richard Saltoun Gallery, London

Ulay
Irritation - There is a Criminal Touch to Art, 1976
Set of 11 analogue Baryta prints with film, printed 2018. Single channel video, 16 mm film transferred to digital, B&W, sound
27 min 51 sec. Each print: 61.5 x 45 cm
Edition 7 of 10 + 2 AP. Courtesy ULAY Foundation, LIMA, Amsterdam and Richard Saltoun Gallery, London

contact gallery about this work

Ulay
Irritation - There is a Criminal Touch to Art, 1976
Set of 11 analogue Baryta prints with film, printed 2018. Single channel video, 16 mm film transferred to digital, B&W, sound
27 min 51 sec. Each print: 61.5 x 45 cm
Edition 7 of 10 + 2 AP. Courtesy ULAY Foundation, LIMA, Amsterdam and Richard Saltoun Gallery, London

contact gallery about this work

Ulay
Irritation - There is a Criminal Touch to Art, 1976
Set of 11 analogue Baryta prints with film, printed 2018. Single channel video, 16 mm film transferred to digital, B&W, sound
27 min 51 sec. Each print: 61.5 x 45 cm
Edition 7 of 10 + 2 AP. Courtesy ULAY Foundation, LIMA, Amsterdam and Richard Saltoun Gallery, London

contact gallery about this work

Starting from one of the most radical actions in public space in art history, Irritation – There is a Criminal Touch to Art documents Ulay's arranged ‘art theft’ of Carl Spitzweg’s painting The Poor Poet from the Neue Nationalgalerie and its relocation to an immigrant family's living room. The exhibition continues with Relation in Movement, which like other works by Ulay and Abramović from the Relation series, is based on challenging the physical limitations of mind and body.

Ulay & Marina Abramović
Relation in Movement, 1977
Set of 6 silver gelatin prints mounted on board, printed 2019, with a letterpress performance’s instruction leaflet
Each: 51 x 61 cm
Edition 1 of 7 + 2 APs. Courtesy Marina Abramović Archives, ULAY Foundation, LIMA, Amsterdam and Richard Saltoun Gallery, London

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Ulay & Marina Abramović
Relation in Movement (video), 1977
Video, black and white, sound
35 minutes 26 seconds
Edition of 5 + 2APs. Courtesy Marina Abramović Archives, ULAY Foundation, LIMA, Amsterdam and Richard Saltoun Gallery, London

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By presenting two of Ulay's most iconic works alongside exclusive video clips and content the exhibition reveals how his radical actions can still resonate today and in direct dialogue with contemporary societal issues.

The exhibition is held in conjunction with Ulay’s critically acclaimed exhibition and largest-ever retrospective ULAY WAS HERE at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam.

About ULAY

The pseudonym of Frank Uwe Laysiepen, ULAY (1943–2020) was a radically and historically unique artist whose oeuvre operated at the intersection of photography and the conceptually-oriented approaches of Performance and Body art. Between 1968 and 1971, after training as a photographer, Ulay worked extensively as a consultant for Polaroid, which inspired him to start experimenting with the analogue camera and the instant photography it provided. Taking hundreds of self-portraits, each manipulated in a myriad of ways, Ulay developed an approach that was novel in both method and subject matter, using the camera as a tool to investigate and modify identity, whilst exploring socially constructed issues of gender. During the late 1960s and early 1970s, Ulay’s photographic approach became demonstratively performative, resulting in a long-term collaboration with Marina Abramović. Working together from 1976 to 1988, they focused on pushing the physical limitations of the mind and body. Through their Relations series, numerous actions and performative pieces, they became icons of performance art. In the 1990s, Ulay returned predominantly to photography, critically evaluating the position of the marginalised individual in contemporary society and the vulnerability of others, addressing issues of nationalism, racism and inequality.

Recent solo exhibitions and performances have been held at Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (2020); Depart Foundation, Los Angeles, CA, USA (2017); Cooper Gallery, Dundee, UK (2017); Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt, Frankfurt, Germany (2016–2017); Fondazione Prada, Milan, Italy (2016); Musée d'Art et d'Histoire, Geneva, Switzerland (2016); Nederlands Fotomuseum, Rotterdam, The Netherlands (2015); Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (2015); Tate Liverpool, Liverpool, United Kingdom (2013); C- Space, Beijing, China (2011); and National Centre for Contemporary Arts (NCCA), Moscow, Russia (2007). His work, along with his many collaborations with Marina Abramović, is featured in collections of major institutions around the world, including the Stedelijk Museum, Centre Georges Pompidou, Kunstmuseum Bern, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) and The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA).

For more details, visit the Richard Saltoun Online Viewing Room here.


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