Irina Kulik will compare Luc Tuymans and Marlene Dumas, tracing the state of figurative painting in today’s art scene.
Marlene Dumas (b. 1953) is a contemporary South African artist. With her favorite genre being portrait painting, Dumas depicts both ordinary people and celebrities from the world of fashion, politics, pop culture, etc. By emphasizing the physical and mental fragility of the human condition, her works explore body and sexuality, mortality and disease, violence and prejudices inherent in modern society. They are often based on photographs of the artist’s friends and partners as well as images found in the press. Bringing her international recognition as a leading contemporary painter have been two major surveys in Los Angeles and New York (2008) and at the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (2014). She participated in the European biennial Manifesta 10 in St. Petersburg, Russia (2014). Dumas lives and works in Amsterdam.
Luc Tuymans (b. 1955) is a Belgian artist, primarily known as a major figurative painter. While interpreting the historical memory of some seminal twentieth-century events, such as World War II, the holocaust, Belgium’s colonial policy, and the like, his works also investigate the artist’s personal memories and everyday life. Many of the plots of his canvases derive from photographs, film shots, and media images. He has participated in Documenta (1992, 2002) and represented the Belgian Pavilion at the 49th Venice Biennale (2001). In 2019 Tuymans opened Skin—a comprehensive personal exhibition in Venice’s Palazzo Grassi. He lives and works in Antwerp.