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Messerschmidt and Modernity

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20120727181505-vexed_man_30504901
The Vexed Man , after 1770 Alabaster 15 1/2 X 10 3/4 X 10 1/4 In. (39.4 X 27.3 X 26 Cm) © The J. Paul Getty Museum, 2008.4
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Self-Portrait after Messerschmidt (detail), 2009, Tony Bevan. Courtesy L.A. Louver, Venice, CA and Ben Brown Fine Arts, London © Tony Bevan
Messerschmidt and Modernity

1200 Getty Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90049
July 24th, 2012 - October 14th, 2012
Opening: July 24th, 2012 10:00 AM - 5:30 PM

QUICK FACTS
WEBSITE:  
http://www.getty.edu
NEIGHBORHOOD:  
santa monica/venice
EMAIL:  
visitorservices@getty.edu
PHONE:  
310-440-7300
OPEN HOURS:  
Tue-Fri, Sun 10-5:30; Sat 10-9. Closed Mondays and on January 1, July 4 (Independence Day), Thanksgiving, and December 25 (Christmas Day).
TAGS:  
sculpture

DESCRIPTION

Messerschmidt and Modernity explores the astonishingly modern series of so-called Character Heads created by the German Baroque artist Franz Xaver Messerschmidt (1736–1783).

The exhibition demonstrates how Messerschmidt's intriguing heads are linked to the 18th and 19th centuries' fascination with expression and the "passions," as well as with the pseudosciences of physiognomy and pathognomy. It also traces how this series influenced the work of artists in fin-de-siècle Vienna and contemporary artists in Austria, Great Britain, and the United States.

The Expression Lab adjacent to the exhibition offers an interactive photo booth where you can explore Messerschmidt's innovative approach to depicting the emotions.

The Vexed Man, acquired by the J. Paul Getty Museum in 2008, is one of a group of astonishing "Character Heads" produced by Franz Xaver Messerschmidt (1736–1783), a renowned German sculptor at the Habsburg court in Vienna. Messerschmidt and Modernity examines not only the study of expression and physiognomy during the eighteenthcentury European Enlightenment but also the impact the heads have had on the work of modern and contemporary artists in Austria, Great Britain, and the United States.