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Daniel Buren on the High Line

Daniel Buren, The Gardlands, 1982-2017, Art Basel, Miami, US

High Line presents En Plein Air, a group exhibition that broadens and challenges historical ideas of outdoor painting. The exhibition is on view along the length of the park from April 2019 to March 2020.  It will bring together work by eight artists, including French artist Daniel Buren, who will string his signature stripe piece The Gardland over the elevated walkway.

En Plein Air also features newly commissioned artworks by Ei Arakawa, Firelei Báez, Sam Falls, Lubaina Himid, Lara Schnitger, Ryan Sullivan, Vivian Suter, and Daniel Buren.

Daniel Buren (b. 1938, Boulogne-Billancourt, France) is best known for his use of alternating stripes that he began in the 1960s. For the High Line, Buren installs hundreds of striped flags organized in 16 sections that crisscross the Western Rail Yards. The work continues a project presented first for documenta VII in 1982. Originally titled Les Guirlandes (“The Garlands,” or tinsel), Buren responded to the arbitrary and absurd organizing principle of documenta VII exhibition’s catalogue—the featured artists were listed by date of birth. Buren included a sound component that alternately played a voice reading the names of the colors of the flags in 14 different languages and excerpts of classical music works arranged in chronological order by the composer’s date of birth. Thirty-five years after the original display, the work evokes a commentary on national flags and nationalism rising everywhere in the world.

Curated by Cecilia Alemani, Donald R. Mullen, Jr. Director & Chief Curator, with Melanie Kress, High Line Art Associate Curator.

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