The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Friday, December 3, 2021

First retrospective in Spain on the Swiss artist Max Bill opens at Fundacion Juan March
Max Bill, Mesa redonda-cuadrada, 1950. Madera y linoleo, 73 x 90 x 90 cm.

MADRID.- From Friday 16 October to 17 January 2016, the first complete retrospective in Spain on Max Bill can be seen at the Fundación Juan March in Madrid.

The Swiss artist Max Bill (Winterthur, 1908 - Berlin, 1994) was a multi-talented figure whose life was structured around his artistic activities and his reflection on a focused series of major ideas, namely form, realisation, function, figure, beauty and configuration. Bill can be located within the Renaissance tradition of an homo universalis, a “configurator” who combined the virtues of the homo faber and the homo ludens throughout the course of his highly active life.

This first retrospective in Spain on Max Bill offers a concentrated survey of the artist’s complete oeuvre, given that it covers in a chronological and thematic manner all areas of his multi-faceted creativity: painting, drawing and printmaking, sculpture, architecture, book and magazine design, industrial and furniture design, typography and advertising design, the latter ranging from large-format posters to small inserts in magazines. A carefully chosen selection of 170 works and documents loaned from public and private collections in Europe and the USA give shape to this idea of a “concentrated retrospective”, which has been the concept behind the present exhibition and its accompanying catalogue from the outset.

Until now the work of Max Bill has only been seen in Spain as part of group exhibitions and, in particular, in the solo exhibition devoted to him at the Museo Español de Arte Contemporáneo in Madrid and the Fundació Joan Miró in Barcelona in 1980, which was the first in Spain to show painting, sculpture and graphic work together. Bill’s architecture, which has been the subject of various studies and publications, is also analysed in the present exhibition, as is the time he spent at the Bauhaus and his role in the founding of the Hochschule für Gestaltung Ulm (HfG) [Ulm Higher School of Design], established in 1951.

Following a series of important recent exhibitions held at the Kunstmuseum in Stuttgart, the Kunstmuseum and the Gewerbemuseum in Winterthur and the Haus Konstruktiv in Zurich between 2005 and 2008 (the latter marking the centenary of the artist’s birth), the present exhibition at the Fundación Juan March aims to offer an updated assessment of the work of this Swiss artist and of his significance for the visual arts, architecture and design.

The exhibition has been conceived and organised in close collaboration with the max, binia+jakob bill stiftung and has primarily benefited from Jakob Bill’s advisory capacity. It presents a selection of key and representative works covering the entire career of this artist, who studied at the Bauhaus between 1927 and 1928 and who was, as noted above, an architect and co-founder of the Ulm School in 1951, as well as being the leading representative of the Konkrete Kunst [Concrete Art] trend which was seminal for Swiss contemporary creation. Bill was also notable for his influence on Spanish architecture and on Latin American geometrical art, a facet that was recently explored at the Fundación Juan March in the exhibition América Fría. La abstracción geométrica en Latinoamérica, 1934-1973 (cf. Finally, Bill was noted for his essays, his dedication to teaching and his political and social concerns.

All these aspects of his life and work are covered in the exhibition’s fully illustrated accompanying catalogue, which is published in two editions (English and Spanish). It features essays by leading international and Spanish experts and a selection of previously unpublished texts by Max Bill. Among the authors of the catalogue are specialists in a range of fields, including Jakob Bill, Karin Gimmi, María Amalia García, Gillermo Zuaznabar, Neus Moyano and Fernando Marzá. Also included is a selection of previously unpublished texts, the majority by Max Bill, which have been translated, annotated, selected and edited by Neus Moyano, Gillermo Zuaznabar, Manuel Fontán del Junco and María Toledo.

Prior to the present exhibition, a previous one on the artist’s graphic output, featuring more than a hundred works, was shown at the Fundación Juan March in Palma de Mallorca (25 February - 30 May 2015) and at the Museo de Arte abstracto Español in Cuenca (24 June - 18 September 2015).

In a text on issues relating to exhibition design written in 1948, Max Bill observed that he had often asked himself why we visit exhibitions.

“I have reached the conclusion […] that most visitors hope to experience a sensation that goes beyond the scope of their everyday lives. A visit to an exhibition offers the chance interrupt normal life with a one-day celebration.”

Bill’s work can be considered an intense celebration of forms: those who role lies within daily life, such as design and architecture, and others which celebrate a beauty that does not have a practical function: the beauty of works of art, which Bill often defined as “objects configured for spiritual use”. The present exhibition aims to celebrate this dual aspect of creation.

Today's News

October 18, 2015

Landmark exhibition in Minneapolis traces Eugène Delacroix's influence on modern art

National Gallery of Art announces second round of acquisitions from the Collection of the Corcoran Gallery

First retrospective in Spain on the Swiss artist Max Bill opens at Fundacion Juan March

"In Living Color: Andy Warhol and Contemporary Printmaking" opens at the Philbrook Museum

United Nations' Blue Helmets to protect world's heritage from Islamic State: Italy

Stéphane Mallarmé's rare and perfectly preserved collection sold at Sotheby's Paris

Video and large-scale wall drawing addressing women and modernism by Andrea Geyer on view at MoMA

Cooper Hewitt launches campaign to take Design in the Classroom Program nationwide

Exhibition of works by Swiss-American artist Christian Marclay opens at Staatsgalerie Stuttgart

Newly discovered sketch of Captain Cook death bay in Hawaii at Bonhams sale

NYPL focuses on women printmakers in exhibition showcasing rare works from the 16th to the 19th century

German artist Cornelius Völker opens first exhibition on the West Coast at Hosfelt Gallery

The Fishing Hut by Niall McLaughlin Architects wins the 2015 Stephen Lawrence Prize

Christie's announces Seven Centuries of Science sale now officially open for bidding

The Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art opens exhibition featuring the work of Helena Almeida

50 black and white photographs by Magnum photographer Ian Berry on view at Lucy Bell Gallery

Exhibition of eight new oil paintings by Jordan Casteel on view at Sargent's Daughters

Washington DC based artist Hedieh Javanshir Ilchi opens exhibition at RandallScottProjects

Hurricane Sandy wedding photo restored and returned to owner

Exhibition at British Library celebrates the cultural dynamism of West Africa

Queen Máxima to open "The Future of Fashion is Now" in Shanghai

Gouache on wove paper by Alexander Calder soars to $109,250 at Cottone Auctions

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful