The SCHIRN is premiering the first major exhibition offering an overview of the female contribution to Surrealism. Unlike their male colleagues, women often reversed the perspective, namely by exploring their own mirror image and adopting various roles they looked for a model of identity of their own. They also addressed political topics, literature or foreign myths. Alongside famous names such as Louise Bourgeois, Claude Cahun, Leonora Carrington, Frida Kahlo or Meret Oppenheim the show included numerous unknown, exciting personalities such as Toyen, Alice Rahon or Kay Sage waiting to be discovered. The publication not only presents the impressive current oeuvre of the female Surrealists in large-format images. The great range of essays by various female experts illustrates the diversity of that art movement while the accompanying biographies offer insights into the various different and exciting aspects of the lives and work of the artists.

TIP Some 260 paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs and films by 34 artists from 11 countries complement each other to form an overall view of the fantastic creation of the Surrealist avant-garde. The comprehensive catalog offers an unparalleled and exclusive survey. Do not miss out of this unique opportunity.


More than any other artist of his day Richard Jackson has focused his attention on the radical expansion of painting. For the first time the Schirn is assembling five of his 12 extensive installations. In his Rooms, comic-like figures, animals or objects become actors involved in a unique process: Air compressors and pumps cause rich colors to flow through tubes and funnels, through ears, mouths and other body orifices and spread them across the floor, walls, furnishings and figures. The publication takes up Jackson’s painterly process and guides the reader through the rooms with their ever-changing perspectives and bright colors. Essays by author Chris Kidd, art historian Christian Janecke and curator Matthias Ulrich place the works by the Californian artist in context and highlight important links with art, politics and history.

TIP Thanks to the detailed texts on the individual rooms and installations as well as the comprehensive photographic documentation, readers can enjoy discovering ever new details and connections to the history of art and current events.


The expansive sculptures by Karla Black are characterized by an ambiguous, fragile beauty. Delicate pastel shades and films, light and reflections lend them a sense of weightlessness. Her large-format works straddle the genres of installation, painting and performance and are intended as standalone sculptures. Black works with classic sculptural materials as well as substances in everyday use and cosmetics – with Vaseline, plaster powder, transparent adhesive tape or lipstick. The texture, “the feel of it”, is crucial in her selection. For the Schirn Rotunda, the Scottish artist developed a new site-specific piece. The publication captures the delicate parts of the installation to striking effect and guides the observer through the artist’s haptic body of work.

An exclusive interview with Karla Black offers an illuminating insight into her way of working and the themes and issues that are central to her work.


With her monumental tapestries the Norwegian-Swedish artist Hannah Ryggen created a powerful, politically inspired oeuvre. Working from a small self-sufficient farm on the west coast of Norway she deployed her work to launch visual attacks on Hitler, Franco and Mussolini and was highly vocal in her support for the victims of Fascism and National Socialism. Now for the first time in Germany the Schirn is presenting the artist’s comprehensive oeuvre in roughly 25 tapestries. The publication provides insights into Ryggen’s compelling and powerful oeuvre that is uncannily contemporary in our times of increasing inequality, nationalism and populism. The essays by Marit Paasche and Marie Luise Knott offer broad insights into Hannah Ryggen’s turbulent life and impressive oeuvre. An exclusive interview by Esther Schlicht with artist Ingar Dragset shows how Ryggen continues to be an important role model today.

A comprehensive chronology and biography delves deep into the world of Hannah Ryggen not only relates some highly personal experiences of an artist, who all her life has supported herself and her family, but also describes several decisive events in world politics that she commented on consistently using a clear visual language.




His art combines highbrow culture and the everyday, chance and planning, the profound and the trivial – to produce a unique experience. John M. Armleder has purpose-created new expansive installations specially for SCHIRN. One such work featuring 20 mirror balls in the freely accessible SCHIRN Rotunda produces a veritable hall of mirrors. The core thrust of Armleder’s work is on a rejection of anything specific and predefined and instead a predilection for processes. This fundamental approach is reflected for instance in the title “CA.CA.” of the SCHIRN presentation. John M. Armleder takes viewers on a journey through the art and culture of the 20th and 21st centuries and never tires of questioning existing systems and structures of the art world. The publication helps visualize the exhibition, guiding the reader through this extraordinary show and provides fundamental insights into the artist’s oeuvre in the form of an essay and a detailed biography.

The detailed work views provide a visual guide of Armleder’s expansive and visually diverse works allowing readers to vividly relive the exhibition .


Contemporary music has a sound all of its own – quite literally: musical instruments that are sculptures at the same time represent a still relatively unknown, recent development in contemporary art. In a group exhibition involving artists from all over the world, the SCHIRN is showing artworks that also function as musical instruments. Playing these sculptural works is the key element of this continually changing exhibition. Throughout its duration, the SCHIRN will become a temporary concert hall in which the works are activated and made to produce sound.
The publication accompanying the exhibition also has its own sound. Articles by Irene Noy, Marion Saxer, Matthias Ulrich and Salomé Voegelin offer an extraordinary and nuanced insight into the world of sound: contemporary art sounds like social exchange when other forms of language fail, like new ways of making contact, and like questions of identity and the political potential of art.


Musical instruments that are also works of art – so why not a catalog that looks like a record sleeve? With its special format, this extraordinary publication is a great addition to any bookshelf or record collection.



In a first for Germany, Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt is to present the works by Swedish artist couple Nathalie Djurberg and Hans Berg in a comprehensive overview exhibition. On show will be around 40 video and sound works from the last two decades, as well as their first virtual reality work from last year. An encounter with the films of Nathalie Djurberg and Hans Berg holds a certain allure – impressively and directly, they draw the observer in, immersing them in flamboyant, suggestive worlds with a backdrop of hypnotic music. The artists take the visitor on a journey inside human beings. Their films are like absurd dreams and repressed memories, exploring the limits of human tolerability with atmospheric density. Curator Lena Essling, philosopher Patricia MacCormack, musician David Toop, and curator Massimiliano Gioni decipher the works by Djurberg and Berg in relation to the settings, the sounds and the central themes.

With a wealth of large-format color illustrations and image series, the catalog offers a varied insight into the complex oeuvre of Djurberg and Berg.


Austrian Bruno Gironcoli (1936–2010) is considered one of the most important sculptors of his generation. With his own personal color scheme and individual pictorial language, from the early 1960s onwards he created a quite unique oeuvre in a never-ending glut of sheer inventiveness. The powerful exhibition at Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt presents excerpts from Gironcoli’s monumental later works. As if they had sprung from a surreal dreamworld, the enormous pieces resemble so many “prototypes for a new species”, coated in gleaming, seductive surfaces of gold, silver and copper. The exhibition catalog guides the reader through images of details and complete works among the monumental sculptures of Gironcoli’s theater of the absurd. Furthermore, curator Martina Weinhart highlights Gironcoli’s extensive creativity and the various different influences on his very particular figural language.

With historic archive shots, the catalog permits extraordinary insights into Bruno Gironcoli’s life and work, as well as the Vienna art scene of his time.


Maria Loboda

The sculptures and installations by Maria Loboda are enigmatic, not to say full of mystery. Two parallel hedges of Portugal laurel, framed by concrete tubs, stretch up to the first story of the SCHIRN Rotunda and transform the space into a labyrinthine sculpture garden. Organic shapes in concrete protrude from the hedges, together constituting the letter R. “Tout te**iblement” is written on the concrete frames surrounding the plants, a well-known statement by Yves St. Laurent. With the exhibition title “Idyll in an Electronics Factory,” Loboda references a review bearing the same title and published in 1963 in US design magazine “Interiors.” The holistic approach of landscape architect James C. Rose discussed in said article serves as both the starting point and the subject of Loboda’s work. In the form of a concertina fold-out book printed on both sides, the intricately designed exhibition catalog winds its way through Loboda’s Rotunda labyrinth and provides an introduction to her work and biography with an in-depth text.


Publication and artwork in one. Thanks to the special form of the concertina fold-out book, Maria Loboda’s sculpture garden can literally unfold as a visual narrative.


Nowadays, there is pretty well no such thing as unspoiled nature and the blank spaces on the maps have nearly all disappeared. At the same time, our fascination with the phenomenon of “wilderness” in art remains unabated. The SCHIRN is now devoting an extensive themed exhibition to the subject. More than 100 works of art by 34 international artists – from 1900 right up until the present day – will be shown in the exhibition, including pieces by Henri Rousseau, Tacita Dean, Max Ernst, Gerhard Richter and Georgia O’Keeffe, along with many other important positions. The search for those last untouched places, the expedition as an artistic medium and visions of a post-human world characterize the works in the exhibition, as does the renegotiation of the relationship between human and animal. At the same time, the wilderness has always been a space into which artists project their notions of what is different and exotic, their counter-images, longings and fantasies. The lavish catalog illustrates the approaches taken by artists to the phenomenon of wilderness from all kinds of perspectives; it contains impressive illustrations of the works on show.



Edited by Esther Schlicht. With a foreword by Philipp Demandt and essays by Philippe Descola, Karen Kurczynski, Johanna Laub, Cord Riechelmann, Esther Schlicht and Reiko Tomii, along with statements by the artists and excerpts from historical and literary texts. Kerber Verlag, German/English edition, 200 pages, 22 x 27 cm (portrait format), 150 ills., hardback, €35 (Schirn), €44 (in bookstores), ISBN 978-3-7356-0521-4


Wilhelm Kuhnert and the image of africa

Berlin painter Wilhelm Kuhnert was one of the first European artists to travel the then largely unexplored former colony of German East Africa at the beginning of the 20th century. The drawings and oil sketches of the flora and fauna there that he produced on his trips served as the basis for monumental paintings that he then made in his studio after returning to Berlin. Back then, Kuhnert exhibited the works internationally to great acclaim and emerged as the leading interpreter of the African animal kingdom. He shaped the Western notion of Africa like no other painter of his day. SCHIRN is presenting the first major retrospective on Kuhnert’s life and work. The accompanying catalog sheds light on his oeuvre both against the backdrop of art history and the history of the natural sciences as well as against the foil of German colonial history; it contains large-format reproductions of his monumental animal paintings.

An extensive chronology in the catalog gives the reader an overview of German colonial history and provides the key background information on Kuhnert’s life and work.


The self as political issue

The traditional self-portrait is now a thing of the past. The customary features of a classic self-portrait are for the most part lacking entirely. The face has now come under suspicion. The exhibition catalogue “ME” presents a comprehensive overview of the iconoclastic processes to which the genre of the self-portrait is subject today, along with relevant subversive techniques in art, including humor, irony, decentralization, fragmentation, blindness, and obstruction. However—or perhaps precisely for that reason—the artist-subject has remained a leitmotif in contemporary art, although it is no longer associated exclusively with the image of the artist. The subject is a constantly changing phenomenon and thus difficult to grasp in a portrait.


Political art today: artists’ voices brought together in one newspaper

Populist leaders, fake news and totalitarian propaganda: Democracy appears to be in crisis. At the same time, a notable re-politicization is taking hold. Artists too are now raising their voices and creating works they see as an objection to the existing system, as a call to political action and as an instrument of criticism. In their videos, installations, photographs, sculptures and paintings, they question political attitudes, analyze the discourse of power, and design imaginative forms of a new protest culture. An exhibition on political art needs a newspaper in which these voices can be raised: in the works of the artists, but likewise in their statements and interviews, which are available to read here. 

Tip. The paper is underpinned by a code: The different thicknesses of the dash under each artist’s name represent the level of GDP per head in the country in which each artist was born.



[Translate to English:]

Als einer der ersten europäischen Künstler bereiste der Berliner Maler Wilhelm Kuhnert zur Jahrhundertwende die damals noch weitgehend unerforschte ehemalige Kolonie Deutsch-Ostafrika. Die auf seinen Reisen entstandenen Zeichnungen und Ölskizzen der dortigen Flora und Fauna dienten ihm als Vorlagen für monumentale Gemälde, die er nach der Rückkehr in seinem Atelier anfertigte. Kuhnert stellte seinerzeit international mit großem Erfolg aus und wurde zum führenden Interpreten der afrikanischen Tierwelt. Wie kein anderer Maler seiner Zeit hat er die westliche Vorstellung von Afrika geprägt. Die SCHIRN präsentiert die erste große Retrospektive zum Leben und Werk des Künstlers. Der begleitende Katalog beleuchtet Kuhnerts Werk und Schaffen sowohl vor dem Hintergrund der Kunst- und Naturwissenschaftsgeschichte als auch der deutschen Kolonialgeschichte und enthält großformatige Abbildungen der monumentalen Tiermalerei.

Eine ausführliche Chronologie im Katalog gibt Einblick in die deutsche Kolonialgeschichte und liefert die zentralen Hintergrundinformationen zu Kuhnerts Leben und Werk.



All good things come in thirties! In 30 entertaining chapters the magazine brings together everything that makes the SCHIRN one of the most distinguished and popular exhibition places in Europe. Opulent and amusing and everything in between, the magazine presents selected exhibitions, opinions and hot topics, friends and the community, facts and figures, the highlights and excitements from 30 years of SCHIRN history. A magazine by and for everyone who loves the SCHIRN and who make it what it is.


The invention of an illusion

A glass display case. Behind it a stage showing scenes relating to folklore or natural history, inhabited by all kinds of materials, stuffed animals or even human figures. This is what we typically associate with dioramas. And what does this have to do with art? For the first time, the exhibition at Schirn Kunsthalle takes a critical look at this question. The show starts even before the development of Louis Daguerre’s theaters at the Paris Opera, with the early religious tableaux dating from the 18th century which reflect the scientific use of dioramas in natural history museums and continues right up to the 21st century, to the deconstruction of the diorama in contemporary photographs, films and installations. The numerous texts in the accompanying catalogue range from meticulous technical instructions to art texts and even the kind of theoretical analyses typical of the history of art and culture. They reflect the interdiscipinarity of this special medium, providing multilayered insights into the cultural history of exhibiting and the development of the diorama as a precursor to the virtual world

TIP. In addition to the wide range of dioramas portrayed, the catalogue texts are unbelievably diverse. They range from the detailed analyses by Carl Akeley, the inventor of the dioramas at the American Museum of Natural History, to a letter by Anselm Kiefer to the curator and Donna Haraway’s famous text on the “teddy bear patriarchy”


Sand in your eyes

Lena Henke’s is inspired by a broad variety of things, ranging from the architecture of fantastic 16th century landscaped gardens to the bright colors of Luis Barragán’s buildings in Mexico City from the mid-20th century. In the extensive installation entitled “Don’t yell at me, Warrior!” the artist draws on her very own experiences of architecture, public spaces, and urban planning concepts to develop a quite unique formal vocabulary. The pillars of the Schirn Rotunda, clad in garish yellow, pink and blue, are reflected in the cool, metallic aluminum surface of the two sculptures at the entrances to the Rotunda. Only from above can one discern their shape: outsized large eyes with a curved shape. Through grill shutters on the first floor of the Schirn fine sand drifts down into your eyes as soon as a gust of wind or the movement of a foot sends a puff of the tiny grains through the grill.

TIP. Lena Henke’s piece relies on a change of perspective (from below, from above, from the side) to cerate an ever new, surprising interplay of different shapes, colors, materials, lighting situations and reflections



For the Rotunda of the SCHIRN, the Berlin-based artist Rosa Barba (*1972) has devised a new work responding titled “Blind Volumes” to the specific conditions of this freely accessible public area. In this instal­la­tion created specif­i­cally for the SCHIRN, in which she responds to the openly acces­sible public setting of the rotunda, Barba combines the artistic media of film and sculp­ture. Inside the rotunda, she has erected an expan­sive, geomet­ri­cally intri­cate steel construc­tion consisting of some 80 serial frame­work elements. The work is twelve meters tall and nearly fills the entire lobby of the Schirn. Rosa Barba uses the instal­la­tion as the stage for a dynamic chore­og­raphy combining visual imagery, light, and sound. The artist also cites a selec­tion of her own works, which are presented here in a new constel­la­tion.



Halley has developed a multi-part installation, using the architecture and spatial conditions of the Rotunda and the SCHIRN Kunsthalle as his starting point. Across an area of some 450 m² Halley has designed an atmospheric, spatially complex, inventively coded environment that draws on both current and older elements of the artist’s oeuvre. Peter Halley’s installations are always grounded in his understanding of the cultural and architectural context of the spaces for which they are made. Thus, the development of The SCHIRN Ring was preceded by an intensive study of the architectural and conceptual context of the SCHIRN Rotunda.


Half a century of painting

Joan Miró had a preference for large-scale formats and a fascination with the wall. In his painterly practice, the wall was the starting point – both as an object to be depicted and as an inspiration for the textural quality of his works. Miró distanced himself from the simple reproduction of reality and equated the picture plane with the wall. His particular approach with the wall explains the care with which he selected and prepared the materials and the grounds of his pictures at every stage of his career. The artist used whitewashed canvas, coarse burlap, Masonite (hardboard), sandpaper and tarpaper in order to create unique visual worlds of outstanding materiality.


Booty of the streets

Whether early Pop artists, trailblazers of Street Art, or protagonists of a “natural poetry” of reality: in the 1950s, the “Affichistes” came forward with a complete new concept of the panel painting. On their rambles through the streets of postwar Paris, they collected fragments of ubiquitous, overlayered, often weathered and tattered posters and elevated the world of everyday urban life itself to the status of a painting. Their access to reality, as subversive as it was poetic, made them pioneers of a “New Realism”. Represented artists: François Dufrêne, Raymond Hains, Jacques Villeglé, as well as Mimmo Rotella and Wolf Vostell.


Phenomenon Paparazzi Photography

The publication focuses the fascination with star photography and reflect its influence on the visual arts and fashion photography. It features “icons” of paparazzi photography that have been permanently etched on our visual memory, including Jackie Kennedy-Onassis during an seemingly casual walk through Manhattan, Lady Di fleeing from a frenzy of flashing cameras, or the younger “favorites” of paparazzi such as Paris Hilton or Britney Spears. Besides works by the most well-known representatives of paparazzi photography, such as Ron Galella, Pascal Rostain, Bruno Mouron, or Tazio Secchiaroli, positions by artists such as Cindy Sherman, Gerhard Richter, Andy Warhol, Barbara Kruger, Paul McCarthy, and Richard Avedon are introduced, who have critically examined and sounded out the specific characteristics of the paparazzi aesthetic. The book tells stories from 50 years of paparazzi photography and sets it sights on the paparazzo himself – focuses on a profession that is admired and feared in equal measure and which secures its existence for the most part by means of secretly tracking and stalking famous celebrities and has made the tabloid press one of the highest-selling areas in the press sector – always on the scout and with the goal of publishing exclusive pictures of the unsuspected, the ostensibly confidential, and the personal. In the process, the complex relationships and dependencies are analyzed that occasionally develop between stars and the photographer. 


Painting outfitted with humor and grotesque

The bold and extraordinary oeuvre of the American painter Philip Guston (1913–1980) was one of the most widely discussed of his time. He was the first to return figuration to postwar American painting, was innovative in his combination of “high art” with images from popular culture, and is today celebrated as the pioneer of postmodern, figurative painting. On the occasion of the artist’s 100th birthday, this publication focuses on late works by Philip Guston as a milestone of American painting.


Vexing encounters

The photographic series “Portrait of an Image (with Isabelle Huppert)” is based on a collaboration between Horn and the French film and stage actress Isabelle Huppert. Together they selected earlier roles Huppert had played that the actress then performed again for the camera. For these photographs, Huppert visualized her repertoire solely on the basis of her memory, without the aid of the scripts or the films themselves. 
Setting out from the Schirn, Horn places a selection of these motifs in public space in a way that does not reveal that they are part of her work or an artistic project: no mention is made either of the artist or the exhibiting institution, and there is no title that would indicate that it is a work of art. Sixteen motifs appear in places in Frankfurt’s urban space in which advertising is usually displayed—advertising that in our society for the most part relies on the impact of faces. However, in Horn’s work the portraits are not furnished with commentary and therefore raise questions, for example how and whether we can read the face we are looking at even without a prescribed context.


Life as optimization and experience project?

The credo of today’s society without boundaries reads “ever faster, ever higher, ever further.” In the early twenty-first century, man, oscillating between euphoria and depression, finds himself confronted with the promising opportunities of a global and virtual world as well as the challenge to constantly improve, optimize, and shape his life more efficiently. The presented works are not aimed at visualizing the contents of the eponymous epochal novel “Infinite Jest” by David Foster Wallace. The book rather explores the various demands confronting today’s individual, in which the modes of resistance and the contradictions of a reality often described as lacking any alternative make themselves felt. The catalog is a commentary on the exhibition. The essays it contains are reproductions in a twofold sense: they reproduce the idea of the presentation in textual form, and they are reprints. The artistic manifestos also published in the book refer to the included essay by Alex Danchev on the one hand and are a constant companion to early-twentieth-century art on the other. They demonstrate the ever-recurring desire for renewal in a way of their own.
Artists: Francis Alÿs, Maurizio Cattelan, Claire Fontaine, Peter Coffin, Lara Favaretto, Andrea Fraser, Karl Holmqvist, Judith Hopf, Ceal Floyer, Josh Kline, Alicja Kwade, Joep van Liefland, Helen Marten, Kris Martin, Navid Nuur, Daniel Richter, Michael Riedel, Anri Sala, Ryan Trecartin, and the Kopp Collection.


Intensity, radicalization, reorientation

Outstanding works and groups of works dating from the late nineteenth century to the present strikingly demonstrate the final intensification or surprising turn within an artist’s oeuvre. The catalogue centers on works by fourteen artists such as Claude Monet and Henri Matisse, who produced a late work that has received acclaim in the meantime, or Martin Kippenberger and Bas Jan Ader, who, when they died young, left us an almost unknown “late work.” 
Artists: Bas Jan Ader, Stan Brakhage, Giorgio de Chirico, Walker Evans, Alexej von Jawlensky, Georgia O’Keeffe, Martin Kippenberger, Willem de Kooning, Édouard Manet, Henri Matisse, Claude Monet, Francis Picabia, Ad Reinhardt und Andy Warhol 


THE book about Yoko Ono - one of the most influential artists of our time.

The catalog provides an overview of the artist’s oeuvre as well as numerous essays whose authors examine various thematic complexes within her overall concept, including film, music, and “intermedia”. Ono’s works are characterized by dualisms and her concern with basic elements and fundamental issues of human existence. Many works revolve around the phenomena of light and shadow, water and fire, air and sky. Destruction and healing as well as balance play important roles in Ono’s concept. The catalog features a comprehensive survey of the multifaceted universe of this extraordinary artist, who is regarded as a pioneer of early conceptual, film and performance art as well as a key figure in the world of music, the peace movement and feminism, who continues to play an influential role in current developments in art. Some 200 objects, films, spatial installations, photographs, drawings and textual pieces as well as a special music room will shed light on the diverse media landscape of Ono’s art and the central themes of her oeuvre. The catalog devotes particular attention to Yoko Ono’s works from the 1960s and 1970s.


Installation art from Brazil

With examples of installations from the late 1960s to the latest artistic positions, the publication demonstrates the specifically Brazilian aspect of this “art of experience.” The book combines positions now considered classical, like those of Hélio Oiticica and Neville D’Almeida, Lygia Clark, Tunga, and Cildo Meireles, with works by younger artists such as Ernesto Neto, Maria Nepomuceno, Henrique Oliviera, and Dias & Riedweg and thus continues the history of the installation in Brazil through to the present.


Graffiti on the cover makes each book a one-of-a-kind item

The major cities of Brazil are home to one of the world’s most vital and fascinating graffiti scenes. In terms of both content and aesthetic quality, this colourful, dynamic and unique movement differs significantly from the American and European street-art scenes. Brazilian street art stands apart from the globalized graffiti culture by virtue not only of the specific political and social climate in a country rocked by profound upheavals but also because of the incredible abundance of styles and techniques it encompasses. Eleven artists and artist groups from São Paulo and other Brazilian cities have been invited to exhibit their paintings in urban settings throughout Frankfurt, and thus to alter the everyday image of the city. Their works include figurative and abstract, light-hearted and socially critical paintings ranging from oversized murals to unpretentious, ephemeral signs and symbols.
With works by: Herbert Baglione, Gais, Rimon Guimarães, Jana Joana & Vitché, Nunca, Onesto, Alexandre Orion, Speto, Fefe Talavera, Tinho, Zezão



Reader + DVD 1, 2, 3

All products of the tree-part exhibition series "Playing the City" as special offer:

Interview Reader, 393 pp., 2012, 22,00 €

Playing the City 3, dvd, 160 min, 2012, 14,90 €

Playing the City 2, dvd, 160 min, 2010, 14,90 €

Playing the City 1, dvd, 130 min, 2009, 14,90 €

regular price 66,70 €