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Cafe Dolly : Picabia, Schnabel, Willumsen

Hybrid Painting

written by Margrit Brehm, Annette Johansen

Hatje Cantz | ISBN 9783775737180

Hardback – 240 pages


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One hundred and fifty years after his birth, the Danish artist J. F. Willumsen (1863–1958) is well on his way to becoming an artist’s artist. Recognized for his merits as a representative of modernism in the eighteen-nineties, his later works were long regarded as commonplace, self-ironic, and kitschy in his home country, whereas his entire oeuvre has remained largely unknown to an international public. The reception of Willumsen’s late work thus recalls that of the figurative works from the thirties and forties by French artist Francis Picabia (1879–1951)—they, too, were not elevated to warrant sophisticated postmodernist reflection on painting until the late eighties.

The book compares works by these two artists with those by the American artist and film director Julian Schnabel (*1951) and discusses the transhistorical similarities in their painterly strategies and explicit self-staging of their role as artists. It also reflects on the reception history of the works and more broadly on the mechanisms of assigning value in art history.

Exhibition schedule: Willumsens Museum Frederikssund, September 8–December 31, 2013


Francis Picabia, Julian Schnabel, Jens Ferdinand Willumsen

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