THOMAS BAYRLE, AMERICAN DREAM, 1970
Monday, October 1 – Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Edison ParkFast, West 18th Street at 10th Avenue
Presented by Friends of the High Line, High Line Art will install Thomas Bayrle’s American Dream on HIGH LINE BILLBOARD, the 25-by-75-foot billboard located within the Edison ParkFast parking lot next to the High Line at West 18th Street and 10th Avenue. The 1970 work depicting a classic Chrysler sedan will be on view between Monday, October 1 and Wednesday, October 31, 2012. Bayrle’s work is the sixth High Line Art installation on HIGH LINE BILLBOARD, which has previously featured works by John Baldessari, Anne Collier, David Shrigley, Maurizio Cattelan and Pierpaolo Ferrari for Toilet Paper, and Elad Lassry.
A pioneer of Pop and Conceptual Art in West Germany in the 60s and 70s, Thomas Bayrle investigates the power of images in the context of advertising and mass iconography. For more than five decades, he has generated works composed by assembling myriad small, often distorted images that highlight, at times metaphorically, the relationship between individual forms and mass.
For the High Line, Bayrle presents American Dream, a visual illusion of a classic Chrysler sedan, generated through hundreds of warped stars featuring the car company’s iconic logo. The image is taken from a 1970 drawing by the artist. Fascinated by Western contemporary society’s obsession with cars, highways, traffic, and roads, Bayrle’s work for HIGH LINE BILLBOARD fuses political commentaries on capitalism and American car culture, while at the same time reflecting on the role of advertising.
“All works by Thomas Bayrle showcase how the individual and the mass fit together,” said Cecilia Alemani, the Donald R. Mullen Jr. Curator & Director of High Line Art. “In American Dream Bayrle looks at two foundations of American culture: advertisement and the car industry. It’s the perfect work for a society obsessed with Mad Men.”
ABOUT THOMAS BAYRLE Thomas Bayrle (b. 1937, Germany) lives and works in Frankfurt, Germany. His work was recently featured as a solo presentation in Documenta 13, Kassel (2012). Upcoming exhibitions include Gavin Brown’s Enterprise (September 29 – October 27, 2012). Recent solo exhibitions include Air de Paris, Paris (2012); Die Sammlung Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Germany (2011); Galerie Barbara Weiss, Berlin (2010); Museu d’Art Contemporani, Barcelona (2009); Museum Ludwig, Cologne (2008); Gavin Brown’s Enterprise (2006); Museum of Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt (2006); Art Unlimited, Art Basel, Basel (2005); State Opera, Vienna (2003); and Center for Contemporary Art, Kitakyushu, Japan (2001). Major biennials include 8th Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju, South Korea (2010); 53rd Venice Biennale, Venice (2009); Athens Biennial, Athens (2009); Biennale of Sydney, Sydney (2008); Brussels Biennial, Brussels (2008); Lyon Biennial 2007, Lyon (2007); 4th Berlin Biennale, Berlin (2006); 50th Venice Biennale, Venice (2003); Documenta 6, Kassel (1977); and Documenta 3, Kassel (1964).
Support High Line Art is presented by Friends of the High Line and the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation. High Line Art is supported by Vital Projects Fund, Inc., and, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. In-kind sponsorship for HIGH LINE BILLBOARD is provided by Edison ParkFast.