May 26 – October 6, 2019

From his very beginnings in the late 1980s, Rudolf Stingel (*1956) has approached painting in a conceptual and self-reflexive manner, exploring its possibilities and media-specific limits through the interplay of artistic strategies, materials and shapes. Based on his confrontation with classic pictorial themes, he develops a wealth of motif variations. Alongside various series of abstract and photorealist paintings, he creates large-scale works made of Styrofoam or cast metal, as well as spaces covered in carpets or reflective silver insulation panels. Notwithstanding their material disparities, all these works share the random or deliberate painterly traces that appear on their surface.

Certain brand new paintings created only this year will be on view for the very first time. The show will also present new site-specific works using carpets and insulation panels in the museum’s exhibition.

The exhibition has been conceived in close collaboration between the artist and guest curator Udo Kittelmann, a long-standing expert of Rudolf Stingel’s work.


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Rudolf Stingel

Born in 1956 in Merano, Italy, and based in New York since 1987, Rudolf Stingel is one of the most internationally-celebrated painters of his generation. From the onset, his way of working has been hallmarked by a substantive exploration of the medium of painting, and of the principles and forms of representation that constitute it.

He has exhibited internationally, with solo shows including those at Palazzo Grassi, Venice (2013); Secession, Vienna (2012); and LIVE at the Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin (2010); and a major retrospective at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2007). Other major solo shows include those at the Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt (2004) and the Museo d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea, Trento, Italy (2001).

His work was included in the 2003, 1999 and 1993 Venice Biennales.


ARTIST TALK, Sunday, May 26 2019, 18:30h – 20:00h 

The artist spoke with Udo Kittelmann, guest curator, about his work in conjuction with his exhibition at the Fondation Beyeler. 

The talk conducted in German with simultaneous translation into ENglisch and French. 

The lecture as video

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Rudolf Stingel Catalogue

Artist's book - What can painting be today
Starting with his exploration of classic visual themes, Rudolf Stingel has developed a wealth of motifs. Besides various series of abstract and photo-realist paintings, he makes large-format works out of Styrofoam, paintings cast in metal, and spaces covered in carpeting or acoustic tiles that viewers can touch or walk through. In his first European museum exhibition, the Fondation Beyeler is presenting Stingel’s most important series of works from all phases of his career. The companion catalogue has been conceived as an artist’s book and unfolds the visual variety and diversity of Stingel’s art. Contrasting photographs of individual works and views of exhibitions point out new associations, allowing a completely refreshing perspective of his oeuvre.

Ed. Udo Kittelmann for the Fondation Beyeler, Riehen / Basel
Hatje Cantz Publishers, 2019, 376 pages, 400 illustrations, CHF 65.-

Catalogue available here

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The exhibition is being supported by: