The Mind’s Eye. Images of Nature from Claude Monet to Otobong Nkanga
The new collection display that will be on view at the Fondation Beyeler this summer focuses on artists’ engagement with nature—from Impressionism to today. “The Mind’s Eye. Images of Nature from Claude Monet to Otobong Nkanga” brings together more than 40 works from their collection. In parallel, the Fondation Beyeler will show works by Robert Ryman from the Daros Collection.
The title “The Mind’s Eye” refers to the eponymous sculpture by artist Pierre Huyghe, which will be exhibited at the museum for the first time and is used here to describe artists’ ability to conjure up images such as those featured in the exhibition. In the past 100 years, our views and notions of nature have changed beyond all measure. A picture by Monet is filled with happiness: it shows nature as unspoiled and reflects the innocent gaze of the artist who has conceived his garden as a haven and a sanctuary.
Another room will be dedicated to the display of a group of six early works by Robert Ryman from the Daros Collection. A cursory look around the room is enough to ascertain that a white picture is not simply a white picture. Numerous variations can be made out in the “technical constituent parts”—usually a mere means to an end, they became defining features of Ryman’s paintings. Format, support, primer, ways of applying the paint, hanging system... Suddenly, the white paintings deploy an inexhaustible diversity, which it is a delight to discover and experience.