Exhibition - Marcel Dzama

Arts and Entertainment

April 23, 2015

From: World Chess Hall of Fame

Marcel Dzama: Mischief Makes a Move

Described as a “Dadaist love story,” Une danse des bouffons (or A jester’s dance) is Dzama’s fictionalized account of the romantic affair between artists Marcel Duchamp and Maria Martins.

Featuring Kim Gordon and Hannelore Knuts (both playing the role of Martins in alternating versions of the film) and a surreal panoply of elements derived from art, dance, and chess, Mischief Makes a Move is an exploration of the mythological figure known as the Trickster, whose pranks frequently blur the line between good and evil.
Marcel Dzama
Photo by Jason Schmidt

Born in 1974 in Winnipeg, Canada, Marcel Dzama’s work is inhabited by an expansive cast of recurring human, animal, and hybrid characters. Typically manipulating a distinctive palette of muted browns, grays, greens, and reds, the artist has developed an immediately recognizable visual language that penetratingly explores human action and motivation, often by means of the violent, erotic, grotesque, and absurd.

His practice unleashes a universe of childhood fantasies and otherworldly fairytales, drawing equally from folk vernacular as from artistic influences that include Dada and Marcel Duchamp.

Widely known for his works on paper, Dzama has in recent years expanded his practice to include sculpture, painting, film, large-scale polyptychs, and dioramas. In the latter, he constructs intricate, complex, three-dimensional scenes using his signature drawings, collage elements, cardboard, and occasionally ceramics.

He creates a cast of human figures, animals, and imaginary hybrids to life, and has developed an international reputation and following for his art that depicts fanciful, anachronistic worlds.

Dzama’s work has been the subject of several solo exhibitions, most recently in 2011 at Gemeentemuseum, The Hague, The Netherlands, and Kunstverein Braunschweig, Germany.

In 2010, a major survey was organized by the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, Canada. Other important solo exhibitions include the Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich (2008); Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, England; Centre for Contemporary Arts, Glasgow (both 2006); and Le Magasin – Centre National d’Art Contemporain de Grenoble, France (2005).

His work has been featured in numerous group exhibitions internationally, including the CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts, San Francisco (2011 and 2009); Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, Halifax, Canada (2009 and 2004); The Museum of Modern Art, New York (2009, 2008, 2006, and 2005); P.S.1.

Contemporary Art Center, Long Island City, New York (2006); Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2006); among others.

Dzama’s work is in the collections of major museums and public institutions, including the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, New York; Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Dallas Museum of Art; Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, Canada; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles;

The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Tate Gallery, London; and the Vancouver Art Gallery.

Since 1998, his work has been represented by David Zwirner, New York. The artist lives and works in New York.

Date: May 14 - October 18, 2015


Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday: 10:00 a.m. -  5:00 p.m.

Thursday, Friday: 10:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Sunday: 12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Admission: Free

Location: World Chess Hall of Fame, 4652 Maryland Avenue, Saint Louis, MO 63108

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