San Francisco, CA
Urs Fischer’s sculptures and paintings explore the tension between the material and the digital, object and image. Drawing on Western art history and popular culture, he continuously recalibrates the techniques and modalities underlying the creation and consumption of artworks. Fischer has an innate ability to play with the mechanisms of perception to challenge people’s awareness of the physical and ideological contexts of their surroundings. Mining image traditions and artistic materials to introduce ideas of time and transience, his installations often have the character of an uncanny and fleeting illusion.
With more than thirty works installed throughout the Court of Honor, rotunda and upper level galleries at the Legion of Honor, Fischer’s sprawling exhibition offers a unique opportunity to appreciate his inventive transformation of iconographic traditions in the context of a historic collection.
Whether or not you go, Urs Fischer provides an overview of the Swiss artist’s heterogeneous oeuvre and features many of his best-known works. Designed and conceived by Fischer, the book is arranged thematically rather than chronologically, with clusters of works that allow the reader to observe how Fischer has explored disparate formal strategies to engage with his multifarious interests--which include gravity, architecture, shadows, representation, destruction, entropy and time--and revisit favorite motifs, such as furniture, fruit, animals, skeletons and other surrogates for his cardinal subject, the human body, over the past decade and a half. Produced for his retrospective exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, this hefty volume includes essays by Jessica Morgan and Ulrich Lehmann that unpack the dominant thematics in Fischer’s work and examine the significance of the materials and production techniques in his sculptural practice.