Private/Corporate I marks the start into a series of exhibitions in which the Mercedes-Benz Art Collection engages in a dialogue with international private collections. In this first show, works of art from the corporation’s collection can thereby be seen from the perspective of the Paul Maenz Collection.
Many works in the Paul Maenz Collection were once seen as spearheading the avant-garde, but have since become classics of post-1945 art. They offer an impressive survey of some of the most important international artistic positions in the four decades between 1960 and 2000, but at the same time reflect the history of the Galerie Paul Maenz, whose self-perception as an avant-garde showcase set new standards in West Germany.
In Private/Corporate I, the history and programming policy of the Paul Maenz Gallery is reflected in conceptually oriented works by Carl Andre, Robert Barry, Giovanni Anselmo, Joseph Kosuth, Jannis Kounellis, Sol LeWitt, Piero Manzoni, Hans-Peter Feldmann, Elaine Sturtevant and Peter Roehr. In the 1980s the gallery discovered and promoted painters from the “Mühlheimer Freiheit” group (Bömmels, Dokoupil et al.), documented the further development of Anselm Kiefer and helped Italian Arte Povera to acquire an international profile (Chia, Clemente, Cucchi, De Dominicis, Paladino, Paolini, Penone). Works by Angela Bulloch, Maurizio Cattelan, Sylvie Fleury and Thomas Ruff reflect the development of the Paul Maenz Collection towards the present day.
The selection of pictures, sculptures, objects and videos from the Mercedes-Benz Art Collection presented in the Private/Corporate exhibition starts with early acquisitions of work by Josef Albers, Max Bill and Almir Mavignier, and also examples from Andy Warhol’s cars series. Further developments of Concept and Minimal Art, moving towards the present day, are represented in the form of works by John M Armleder, Richard Artschwager, Haim Steinbach, Elaine Sturtevant and Franz Erhard Walther. But the principal emphasis, in line with current acquisition policy, is on contemporary international art, with new acquisitions of works by Bogin, Dean, Eichhorn, Fleury, Frize, Hauser, Huemer, Mercier, Miller, Mosher, Sanguineti, Schmidt-Rasmussen, Westerwinter and Winter.
From the Paul Maenz Collection: Carl Andre (USA), Giovanni Anselmo (I), Art & Language: Mel Ramsden (GB), Robert Barry (USA), Peter Bömmels (D), Angela Bulloch (USA), Maurizo Cattalan (I), Sandro Chia (I), Francesco Clemente (I), Enz Cucchi (I), Jiří Georg Dokoupil (CZ), Gino De Dominicis (I), Hans-Peter Feldmann (D), Keith Haring (USA), Anselm Kiefer (D), Joseph Kosuth (USA), Jannis Kounellis (GR), Sol LeWitt (USA), Piero Manzoni (I), Mathieu Mercier (F), Mimmo Paladino (I), Guilio Paolini (I), Guiseppe Penone (I), Thomas Ruff (D), Salvo (I), Elaine Sturtevant(USA)