galleristny in venice

Bad Attitudes: Harald Szeemann’s Landmark Exhibition Was a Scandal in Its Day

Installation view of “When Attitudes Become Form: Bern 1969/Venice 2013” Curated by Germano Celant in dialogue with Thomas Demand and Rem Koolhaas Fondazione Prada, Ca’ Corner della Regina, Venice
1 June – 3 November 2013
Photo: Attilio Maranzano
Courtesy: Fondazione Prada

Harald Szeemann’s mother did not approve of “When Attitudes Become Form.” A resident of Bern, Switzerland, where his famous exhibition took place in 1969, she was horrified by “Attitudes” and the controversy it caused. I’m getting all these terrible phone calls, she wrote to her son. You have to stop doing these gag exhibitions.

That letter from Mrs. Szeemann is one of many archival documents on view on the ground floor of the Ca’ Corner della Regina, the 18th-century Venetian palazzo where Germano Celant, curator of the Prada Foundation, has recreated Szeemann’s groundbreaking show, working in collaboration with the artist Thomas Demand and the architect Rem Koolhaas. This may not be the main event in town—that would be the biennale—but still it’s made an impact. On the second of three press preview days, people were lining up outside, bumping umbrellas in the rain. Read More


Getty Celebrates Storied Curator Harald Szeemann in New Video

Szeemann. (Courtesy Ingeborg Lüscher/Getty Research Institute)

The next time you have 10 minutes to spare, take a look at the brief and wonderful video below that the Getty Research Institute has put out about the legendary Swiss curator Harald Szeemann, who was responsible for shows like the breakout classic of post-minimalism “Live in Your Head: When Attitudes Become Form” at Germany’s Kunsthalle Bern and Documenta 5, in Kassel, Germany in 1972. (And, whoa! Ubuweb has the whole catalogue for the former online.) Read More