Louise Bourgeois, Wassily Kandinsky and Tacita Dean are coming to Sydney


Each year the Sydney International Art Series brings major artists to major Sydney galleries—and this coming summer we can look forward to solo shows featuring work by Louise Bourgeois, Wassily Kandinsky and Tacita Dean.

An icon of fearless art making, Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010) will have her largest Australian survey ever at the Art Gallery of New South Wales (AGNSW), capturing her incredible 70-year career.

Titled Louise Bourgeois: Has the Day Invaded the Night or Has the Night Invaded the Day?, the show will feature works such as Crouching spider, 2003, and Destruction of the father, 1974.

The show will be housed in AGNSW’s new buildings and will be centred on the tensions that defined Bourgeois’s practice: waking and dreaming, love and hate, conscious and unconscious, male and female.

As AGNSW director, Michael Brand, says, “Spanning seven decades, the exhibition is an unprecedented display of the French-American artist’s practice featuring more than 150 works that will inhabit not one but two major spaces: the crisp, white rooms of our major exhibition gallery, and the atmospheric Tank. Here is an extraordinary opportunity to dramatise the tensions, the contradictions, and the powerful psychological oppositions, that drove Bourgeois’ art and formed its content.”

Meanwhile Russian painter, and one of the pioneers of the creation and theory of abstract art, Wassily Kandinsky (1866-1944), will have his full oeuvre on display at AGNSW. Simply titled Kandinsky, the show will again feature works from the collection of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York.

It will trace the artist’s beginnings in Munich, his return to Moscow during World War I, and his later periods in Germany and France.

As Brand explains, “Kandinsky will showcase the work of one of the pioneers of European abstraction, Wassily Kandinsky, who lived and worked across Russia, Germany and France . . . this exhibition will be presented in the original building and expands on our history of exhibitions about modern art’s innovators such as that of Kandinsky’s contemporary, Hilma af Klint, in The Secret Paintings in 2021.”

Tacita Dean drawing The Montafon Letter, 2017, image courtesy the artist, Frith Street Gallery, London and Marian Goodman Gallery, New York/Paris, © the artist, photograph: Fredrik Nilsen.

At the Museum of Contemporary Art will be Tacita Dean, a British-German artist who works primarily in film, known for drawing connections between the past and present, and the history and materiality of film itself.

A career of almost four decades, the highly regarded artist will show works largely created in the last five years, including new and recent films, monumental drawings and installations that convey Dean’s extraordinarily beautiful investigations into chance, memory, entropy, history and the passing of time.

As Dean says of her moving image work, “My relationship to film begins at that moment of shooting and ends in the moment of projection. Along the way, there are several stages of magical transformation that imbue the work with varying layers of intensity. This is why the film image is different from the digital image: it is not only emulsion versus pixels, or light versus electronics, but something deeper – something to do with poetry.”

It’s set to be the artist’s largest presentation of work in the Southern Hemisphere.

Louise Bourgeois: Has the Day Invaded the Night, or Has the Night Invaded the Day?
Art Gallery of New South Wales
25 November 2023—28 April 2024

Art Gallery of New South Wales
4 November 2023—10 March 2024

Tacita Dean
Museum of Contemporary Art
8 December 2023—3 March 2024

News Words by Art Guide Australia