We are pleased to present the exhibition “Max Ernst -Figure x Scape”, a collaborative effort on the part of the three museums: Yokohama Museum of Art, Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art and Utsunomiya Museum of Art.
Ever since the 1930s, Max Ernst (1891-1976) has been known in Japan as one of the leading artists of Surrealism. However, this exhibition will take Max Ernst’s works a step beyond the framework of Surrealism, and explore them from a heretofore unexamined perspective, “figure” and “landscape”. What shall come into sight are not only the artist’s unique concerns revealed in his oeuvre, but its significance to the contemporary Japanese art world.
Various “figures” appear in Max Ernst’s oeuvres. There are for instance birds, angels, beings with innocent faces and grotesque chimerical beings. Ernst also created a “figure” which he named Loplop. This “figure”, which was created from a composition of birds and human beings, appears in the artist’s work and serve as his alter ego. However, because such “figures” are a product of a technique that relies heavily upon coincidence, its appearance takes on many different forms. At the same time, and quite naturally it is closely linked with its surrounding space in the pictorial plane both in the context of its form and meaning. The richness of Max Ernst’s world is to be shown through three chapters: “Birth of the Figure", “Figurescape mined”, and “Return of the Figure”.