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Female model with prosthetic mask, on white cover, MASKE MASK in black font below.


In Present-Day Art

Edited by Madeleine Schuppli


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  • A wide-ranging panorama of the topic of masks in contemporary art and their manifold role in art and culture in general
  • Features work by distinguished international artists
Full Description

Masks evoke scenes of carnival or African tribal rites, we may be thinking of death masks of famous people, theatre and fashion, cosplay, disguise, and of protection. They represent some of the most ancient and most controversial objects of our cultural history. Today’s artists look beyond the mere object, they are interested also in the social, cultural, and political meanings of masks. This book, published in conjunction with an exhibition at Aargauer Kunsthaus Aarau in fall 2019, explores their appearances in contemporary art. Artists at all times have been attracted by masks and their symbolism. Through works by distinguished Swiss and international artists and concise texts the book demonstrates manifold approaches to the topic of masks. With contributions by Yasmin Afschar, Daniel Berndt, Hendrik Bündtge, Emily Butler, Wendy Chang, Michelle Cotton, Peter Fischer, Claire Hoffmann, Olivier Kaeser, Melitta Kliege, Susanna Koeberle, Elsy Lahner, Leo Lencsés, Bettina Mühlebach, Lena Nievers, Lucia Rey, Hermant Sareen, Jörg Scheller, Madeleine Schuppli, Angela Strecken, and Thomas D. Trummer.

Published to accompany the exhibition Mask: In Present-Day Art at the Aargauer Kunsthaus, Aarau, Switzerland between 1 September 2019 and 5 January 2020.

Text in English and German.

About the Author

Madeleine Schuppli, born 1965, studied art history at the universities of Geneva, Hamburg, and Zürich. She was a curator at Kunsthalle Basel 1996-2000 and director of Kunstmuseum Thun, Switzerland, 2000-2007. She was appointed as director of Aargauer Kunsthaus in Aarau, Switzerland, in 2007.

Look Inside
Scheidegger & Spiess
16th Dec 2019
World excluding Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Puerto Rico, United States, Canada, and Japan
325 mm x 240 mm
312 Pages
181 color, 18 b&w
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