28 October 2020 - 17 January 2021
Press View 27 October 2020
Tate Liverpool will present the first solo exhibition in the UK of Argentine artist Marta Minujín (b. 1943). From 28 October 2020 to 17 January 2021 the gallery will show a new version of ground-breaking artwork, La Menesunda, which marks the first major Tate exhibition for an Argentine artist. It is only the third time the artwork has been exhibited since its creation in 1965.
Created by Minujín and Rubén Santantonín (1919–1969) at the Center of Visual Arts of the Instituto Torcuato di Tella in Buenos Aires in 1965, La Menesunda was one of the first environments in global art history. A radical, immersive experience, it not only anticipated the current significance of mass media and popular culture, but also participatory practices that came to prominence in the 1990s and the wave of immersive installations that encourage audiences to turn from passive spectator into an active participant.
While La Menesunda was created as a direct response to street life in Buenos Aires, the title is slang for mayhem and the work is designed to stimulate all five senses. It will take visitors on a journey through eleven distinct spaces, including rooms populated with performers.
The work was reconstructed for the first time at Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires in 2015. Minujín’s artworks often evolve over time and Tate’s curators, working alongside Moderno and the artist, will create a restructured version for the show in Liverpool. The presentation of La Menesunda at Tate Liverpool will be accompanied by an archival display and films documenting Minujín’s career from 1960 to the present day.
Helen Legg, Director, Tate Liverpool said, ‘Marta Minujín has been a pioneer throughout her career and her thoughtful, experimental and provocative work deserves to be seen more widely in the UK. So it is with great pride that Tate Liverpool brings La Menesunda, one of Marta’s most iconic works, to the city. I’m sure visitors will enjoy the wit and freedom of expression that the installation exudes.’
Minujín emerged in the 1960s as one of the strongest voices in Latin American art. She has developed happenings, performances, installations, and video works that have questioned the definitions of art with an unprecedented freedom. Early in her career Minujín worked in Paris, alongside artists associated with Argentina’s Nouveau Réalisme before moving to New York where she collaborated with institutions such as the Guggenheim and MoMA, as well as artist run organisations including E.A.T. and artists such as Allan Kaprow and Andy Warhol.
An icon of experimental art, Minujín uses a mastery of the spectacle to capture the imagination. In 1983, to coincide with the fall of Argentina’s military dictatorship, she created The Parthenon of Books, a structure built of books that had been banned which was erected in the middle of a Buenos Aires street. The artwork was recreated at Documenta 14 in 2017 on a Nazi book-burning site in Kassel, Germany. In 1985 Minujín included Andy Warhol in a performance piece; Paying off the Argentine Foreign Debt with Corn, “The Latin American Gold”.
The exhibition is curated by Kasia Redzisz, Senior Curator, and Laura Bruni, Assistant Curator, Tate Liverpool and is organised in collaboration with Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires and Marta Minujín Estudio.
Supported by the Henry Moore Foundation and the Marta Minujin Exhibition Supporters Group with additional support from Tate Members.
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