This exhibition – alongside its companion exhibition Undoolay, which was held earlier this year at Artists Space, New York – is the largest and, surprisingly for so significant an artist, amongst the first surveys to date for Lukas Duwenhögger (born in Munich 1956, lives in Istanbul). It includes paintings, installations, collages and objects made over more than thirty years.
Duwenhögger’s figurative paintings conjure his subjects into situations and worlds that are inventively adorned, allusive, anachronistic and compelling. As much as a painter, Duwenhögger is a designer and a fabulist. Most of his subjects are treated with love; when depicted in imaginary portraits they are poised and self-sufficient, while together, often homosocially, they seem engaged in private conversation and shared understandings. Events, allegories and narratives are dispersed over an even, democratic, picture plane. Duwenhögger’s figuration is a deliberate confrontation with high cultural mores, with an awareness of the loaded history of that form but an avoidance of heavy-handed references.