I've a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore - Thomas Bayrle chose this famous quote from the heroine, famously played by Judy Garland, of the magical Hollywood musical The Wizard of Oz as the title of his first retrospective in a Spanish museum. With numerous loans from its collection, which boasts over one hundred of Bayrle's works, Deutsche Bank supports the show in the Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona. Upon entering the exhibition, rural Kansas with its endless expanse of wheat fields seems to be the very antithesis of the Frankfurt artist's work. Since the early '60s, his work has incorporated motifs such as highways, telephones, Mao portraits, and canned foods. The artist, whose influence reaches far beyond his capacity as teacher at the Städelschule, answers to the excesses of mass culture with his own original and subversive variation of Pop art; his serially produced prints feature everyday products arranged to form patterns or figures. At the MACBA, around 300 of Bayrle's works testify to the unique position he occupies in contemporary European art. Colorful pop graphics and wallpaper, room-sized sculptures, photo collages, 16 mm films, and digital animations transform the MACBA into a psychedelic environment-far, far away from Kansas.
Thomas Bayrle: I've a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore
Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona
2/6/09 - 4/19/09