Peter Fischli/David Weiss. Are Animals People?

30 april, 2009 - 31 august, 2009 /
Sabatini Building, Floor 4 and Palacio de Cristal, Parque del Retiro, Madrid

The exhibition of Swiss artists Peter Fischli (Zurich, Switzerland, 1952) and David Weiss (Zurich, Switzerland, 1946) is a selection of pieces made by the artists themselves. Peter Fischli/David Weiss Are animals people? focuses on the protagonists of their early works, Bear and Rat. These characters are present at different moments of their artistic career for over thirty years, they have served to question art as an alternative system of knowledge and to position themselves at a distance and with irony from the fine line between fiction and reality.

The exhibition that the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía dedicates to this pair of artists takes place over two venues. At the Sabatini Building excerpts from existing films about the figures that have given them most of their fame "Bear and Rat" will be projected, while the world that surrounds the two protagonists will be presented through photographs and sculptures. At the same time, the Palacio de Cristal will exhibit an installation related to the movies. Two puppets, Bear and Rat, fly like a "mobile" hanging from the ceiling of the Palacio in constant motion, accompanied by music composed for this installation. In turn another bear and a rat placed on the floor seem to be breathing while apparently dreaming of flying.

Fischli & Weiss work with various techniques in the construction of the banal, ordinary objects and places, as well as in the perception of time. For this they use humour, the absurd, distance and wit as tools. The distancing that is their basis allows more reflection on trivial issues that are seemingly inconsequential, while with humour they approach those topics of a more sublime nature.

With their creations these artists pose transformations of the commonplace, a review of everyday reality and banality. For this they use research and observation of the environment itself, causing a reversal of values and hierarchies faced with reality. The influence of Duchamp and Dadaism underlies their work. They are pieces that are deprived of an explicit moral or a socially critical stance. Conversely they present situations, sometimes through many stimuli and other times suggesting mistakes which encourage reflection in the spectator.

Exhibition´s details

Organized by: 
Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía