This summer, experience Voile/Toile – Toile/Voile, the US premiere of a major public artwork by conceptual artist Daniel Buren (France, b. 1938). For more than 50 years, Buren has been extending the possibilities of painting, placing brightly striped works in public spaces—on monuments, city squares, billboards, and train stations—around the world. Voile/Toile – Toile/Voile is a two-part artwork comprising a public performance and installation, marking the first presentation of the work in the United States. The performance takes the form of a sailboat regatta on Bde Maka Ska (formerly Lake Calhoun) in Minneapolis on June 23, featuring the artist’s signature custom-made, striped sails. An outdoor installation of the sails will be featured in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden’s Cowles Pavilion. Conceived especially for Minneapolis, known also as the “City of Lakes,” Buren’s commission celebrates the area’s unique landscape and identity.
The title Voile/Toile – Toile/Voile translates to Sail/Canvas – Canvas/Sail, a play on words that emphasizes the dual nature of the striped canvases as both painting and sail, removing painting from its lofty tradition and inserting it into a discourse of utility. For this work, Buren considers the sail to be a painting and the water to be its exhibition space. When the sails are put on display, he states, “they are canvases that sail the wall, they expose and exhibit themselves as such, but if you go back to their source, they are and will be for a long time to come, painting setting sail.”
Following the sailboat race, the paintings will be on display in the Cowles Pavilion, Minneapolis Sculpture Garden from Jun 26–Oct 7, 2018.
Curator: Pavel Pyś with Fabián Leyva-Barragán
ABOUT DANIEL BUREN
Born in Paris, France in 1938, Buren has participated in major exhibitions all over world, including at the Palais des Beaux-Arts (Brussels), Centre Pompidou (Paris), Touko Museum of Contemporary Art (Tokyo) and Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum (New York). Buren has been a recipient of numerous awards, including the Golden Lion for his French Pavilion at the Venice Biennale (1986), the Grand Prix National de Peinture (1992), and the Premium Imperiale (2007). In recent years, Buren has premiered a number of commissions, including the Fondation Louis Vuitton (Paris, 2016) and the Tottenham Court Road Station (London, 2017).
In the 1960s, while searching for canvas at a Parisian market, Buren came across a striped awning fabric. As he began to abandon traditional painting, he incorporated the minimalist pattern into his work. He called it “degree zero” painting, distilling painting to its very core. Later he began using vertical stripes as a visual tool, creating his works in situ – created at the site where the work will be displayed – to draw attention to the physical and social character of the places where his work is exhibited.
Join us to celebrate the US premiere of Voile/Toile–Toile/Voile (Sail/Canvas–Canvas/Sail), at once a sailboat race and a group of paintings. Presented in collaboration with the Minneapolis Sailing Center, this artwork by artist Daniel Buren consists of two parts: a regatta of nine Club 420 sailboats with the artist’s custom-made striped sails, followed by an exhibition of the sails as paintings at the Cowles Pavilion in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden.
The day’s events include:
9 am: Rigging of sailboats by students from the Minneapolis Sailing Center
10 am: Regatta begins
11:30 am: Race ends, followed by an announcement of the winner and runners-up
After the regatta, the sailboats will continue to sail on the lake until early afternoon.
Five information areas will be situated around Bde Maka Ska, with a central point located at the Minneapolis Sailing Center, 3010 E Calhoun Parkway, Minneapolis. This project is presented by the Walker Art Center and the Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board.
The regatta for Voile/Toile – Toile/Voile is presented in collaboration with the Minneapolis Sailing Center.
Following the event, Voile/Toile-Toile/Voile will be displayed as a group of paintings in the order in which the boats finish the race. The installation will be free to the public and located in the Cowles Pavilion in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden and remain on view throughout the summer, accompanied by a series of public programs. When the installation closes in October, the Walker will be the first museum to acquire Voile/Toile – Toile/Voile, providing the opportunity for repeat presentations with the requirement that the piece must be performed to ascertain the order in which the paintings should be displayed.
Artist Talk: Daniel Buren
June 26, 2018; 6.30pm
Join Daniel Buren in conversation with curator Pavel Pyś for an insightful conversation into Buren’s practice, public works and the artist’s outdoor commission Voile/Toile-Toile/Voile.