Ends of the Earth — Land Art to 1974

Exhibition 11.10.12 – 20.01.13

As the first major museum exhibition on Land Art, "Ends of the Earth" provides the most comprehensive historical overview of this art movement to date. Land Art used the earth as its material and the land as its medium, thereby creating works beyond the familiar spatial framework of the art system. 
The exhibition presents nearly 200 works by more than 100 artists from all over the world. Even before the emergence of the movement in the 1960s, artists from the most varied locations around the globe were increasingly moved to use land as an artistic medium. In a basic sense, this also included the examination of the nature of the earth as a planet. Yves Klein, for instance, wondered what the earth looked like from space. In 1961, he transformed his vision that the dominant color from this perspective would be blue, and that all man-made boundaries could be overcome with this color, into his series "Planetary Reliefs." 
The artists often worked under the open sky, making productive use of the fact that the great outdoors posed other conditions for a work's lifespan than enclosed spaces did. Some works only existed for the short time of their creation, like Judy Chicago's ephemeral works consisting of colored flames and smoke. For ten weeks, the cliffs along Little Bay, Sydney, were packed in synthetic fabric and rope for Christo and Jeanne-Claude's "Wrapped Coast – One Million Square Feet", which, like many other works of Land Art, was enormous in scale. Another famous work of similar proportions was "Spiral Jetty" by Robert Smithson; on the Great Salt Lake in Utah, USA, the artist built a 1,500-foot long spiral-shaped jetty made of material found on site. 
Land Art artists were fascinated by remote locations like deserts or transported the conditions of specific places into exhibition spaces: The Japanese artist group "i" moved four truckloads of gravel on a conveyor belt into an exhibition space and arranged it into a pile there. Alice Aycock fills a minimalistic grid with wet clay. With "Hog Pasture: Survival Piece #1", not only will new material – in this case a green pasture – make on selected occasions its way into the museum but a live domestic pig as well, which will pasture on the meadow from time to time.
Language, film, and photography played a central role in Land Art's creation and development. Magazines and television stations commissioned art works and were the first to publish these. For eight consecutive days in October 1969, the WDR television network interrupted its regularly scheduled programs for a few seconds and presented the eight photographs of Keith Arnatt's "Self-Burial", which depicted the artist gradually sinking into the ground. 
Following the presentation of Tinguely's self-destructing sculpture "Hommage à New York", the NBC television network commissioned the artist to create a work. In collaboration with Niki de Saint-Phalle, Tinguely made a large-scale kinetic sculpture out of waste that was used in choreographed explosions taking place south-west of Las Vegas near a nuclear test site. 
Many other works touched on the subject of the “tortured earth", as Isamu Noguchi described it. The artists examined the wounds and scars that humans inflict on the planet earth, whether by the war machinery (Robert Barry, Isamu Noguchi), dictatorships (Artur Barrio), nuclear testing (Heinz Mack, Jean Tinguely, Adrian Piper) or colonization (Yitzhak Danziger). The media's intensive coverage of Land Art activities led to unusual and complex contributions. Receptive to Land Art's demand for a sensitive consciousness regarding the conditions of production, presentation and dissemination of art, they also gave expression to the technological, social and political conditions of the time. The time period covered in "Ends of the Earth" spans the 1960s to 1974, when, in the context of Land Art, movements such as Conceptual Art, Minimal Art, Happenings, Performance Art, and Arte povera, became more distinct and began to diverge. 

The exhibition was organized in collaboration with the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles (MOCA).

Judy Chicago, Immolation IV from the Women and Smoke Series © Judy Chicago, 1972, Flares, performed with Faith Wilding in the California desert, photo courtesy of Through the Flower housed at the Penn State University Archives
Judy Chicago, Immolation IV from the Women and Smoke Series © Judy Chicago, 1972, Flares, performed with Faith Wilding in the California desert, photo courtesy of Through the Flower housed at the Penn State University Archives
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter
Ends of the Earth - Land Art to 1974, installation view Haus der Kunst, 2012, photo Maximilian Geuter

Stretch your view


Stretch your view

Picture Gallery


Exhibition catalogue

Ends of the Earth — Land Art to 1974

With a foreword by Okwui Enwezor (Haus der Kunst) and Jeffrey Deitch (The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles). MORE


In the press

Ends of the Earth - DER SPIEGEL - Interview

Interview with curator Philipp Kaiser on the exhibition “Ends of the Earth – Land Art to 1974” MORE


Essay

Ends of the Earth and Back

Essay by Philipp Kaiser and Miwon Kwon "Ends of the Earth and Back" MORE


Exhibition Walk-through , Exhibition Walk-through , Exhibition Walk-through

Wilhelm Sasnal

MORE


Exhibition

Robert Adams

29.06 – 25.09.05

During the Federal Garden Show BUGA 2005, which takes place under the motto "Perspective Change" from April to September 2005 in Munich, the Haus der Kunst is presenting the world premiere of Robert Adams's new series, "Turning Back". The 164-photograph "Turning Back" series looks back at the effects of progress. The work is laid out in the fashion of a journey around the American Northwest. MORE


Exhibition

Yayoi Kusama

09.02 – 06.05.07

The art of the Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama (b. 1929) is pure obsession. Her trademarks: grid structures, spheres, mirrors and, above all, dots – Polka Dots. The exhibition is shown in the central Middle Hall of Haus der Kunst. MORE


Exhibition

Rupprecht Geiger

25.01 – 08.05.08

On his 100th birthday Haus der Kunst is paying tribute to the artist with an installation in the museum's central Middle Hall, where, besides two large color sails, the famous "Rote Trombe" [Red Dust Devil] is on display: an enormous tent-like object under which visitors can "stock up on red" for a few minutes. MORE


Exhibition

Shift II: Links of a Broken Chain

29.05 – 20.06.99

An installation by Christoph Brech MORE


Exhibition

Mike Kelley — Catholic Preferences.

11.02 – 17.04.95

Mike Kelley has with his installations and performances driven a thorn into the flesh of contemporary American art. MORE


Exhibition

Cardiff & Miller — Works from the Goetz Collection

13.04 – 08.07.12

The exhibition presents eight works by the Canadian artist duo Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller, who, by combining image and tone and replicated spaces, activate as many of the viewer's senses as possible in order to make the depicted events as real as possible. Cardiff/Miller participated in dOCUMENTA (13), 2012. MORE


Exhibition

Shift I: The Dream of the Ego

30.04 – 24.05.99

An installation by Sabrina Hohmann MORE


Exhibition

Gustav Metzger

21.05.10 – 31.03.11

"Strampelde Bäumf/Mirrortrees" shows trees that have been torn from the earth by the roots, turned upside down and poured in concrete – trees toppled and kicking wildly, an image that reflects the story of Metzger's life. MORE


Exhibition

Garin Nugroho

19.09.08 – 11.01.09

In his film "Opera Jawa" (2006) Indonesian director Garin Nugroho re-interprets the Indian national epic "Ramayana". Nugroho combines traditional forms of Gamelan music, rod-puppet theater, Javanese dance and song with contemporary choreography; the projection is staged as a theatrical installation in the central Middle Hall of the museum. MORE


Exhibition

Hughie O’Donoghue

10.01 – 11.02.97

Like Francis Bacon before him, Hughie O’Donoghue concentrates on the human body, its carnality, vulnerability and sensual power. MORE


Exhibition

The Second Face

14.02 – 27.04.97

As a collection of African sculpture, the Barbier-Mueller Collection in Geneva documents the Dark Continent in all its creative richness as hardly any other museum does. MORE


Exhibition

Beauty now

10.02 – 01.05.00

Beauty was long not a category in modern art – fashion, advertising and mass media had claimed it for their own. In recent years, however, a return of beauty in contemporary art has been evident. MORE


Exhibition

Resistance — Thought Pictures for the Future

11.12.93 – 20.02.94

MORE


Exhibition

Robin Rhode

16.09.07 – 06.01.08

"Walk Off" is Robin Rhode’s first comprehensive exhibition in Europe. Drawings, photographs, animations and sculptures are on display a.o. – complemented by an action room, where Rhode will produce a wall drawing and develop a performance together with the dancer Jean-Baptiste André and the composer Thomas Larcher. MORE


Exhibition

Theatergarten Bestiarium

28.03 – 31.07.11

The exhibition is inspired by the "Bestiarium: Theater And Garden Of Wildness, Battle And Happiness", a text by the gallery owner Rüdiger Schöttle. He conceived a combination of real images with imaginations, thereby creating a unique world of shimmering, ephemeral projections and reflections, through which the visitor moves, as both spectator and actor at the same time. MORE