Social Facades

A Dialogue Between the MMK and DekaBank Collections

MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt am Main
Frankfurt, Germany
30 May – 9 September 2018

On 30 May, the MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt am Main is opening the exhibition “Social Facades”. Until 9 September, visitors will have the first opportunity ever to witness a dialogue between the MMK and DekaBank collections. On the occasion of its 100th birthday, the Deka is making a donation of four major works to the MMK from its collection. The gift encompasses large-scale installations by the artists Michael Elmgreen & Ingar Dragset, Michael Beutler and Tue Greenfort, and a sculpture by Martin Kippenberger. “Social Facades” will moreover feature works by Andy Hope 1930, Cerith Wyn Evans, Isa Genzken, Liam Gillick, Sarah Morris, Michael Pfrommer, Jeroen de Rijke/Willem de Rooij, Wilhelm Sasnal, Markus Sixay, Wolfgang Tillmans, Jonas Weichsel, Franz West and Heimo Zobernig.

The MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt am Main and the Deka look back over many years of cooperation in the development of the museum’s collection and as founding partners of the MMK 2. In addition to its dedicated activities on behalf of the MMK, the DekaBank has amassed a superb contemporary art collection of its own over the past fifteen years, with multifaceted links to the museum’s holdings. Numerous artists are represented in both collections with extensive workgroups. Within the context of the generous donation, the MMK 1 will stage the first exhibition ever to investigate these points of contact and directly juxtapose the two collections.

The exhibition title “Social Facades” was adopted from a work by Isa Genzken in the DekaBank collection. Yet it also stands for the often idealized sociopolitical and social constructs the artists expose as illusions in their works. In times of pervasive change that goes hand in hand with transboundary problems such as pollution, the new challenges urbanization poses to civilization and obsolete cultural ideals, the exhibition asks how artists address themselves to these phenomena. The selected works reveal what goes on behind the façade of the virtually boundless progress that distinguishes globalization. In the film Beijing of 2008, for example, made during the immaculately staged Olympics of that year, artist Sarah Morris reveals the far-reaching changes taking place in Chinese society since the country opened up to the West. In the process, she draws a perceptive portrait of a neocapitalist nation caught between extreme self-stylization and the compulsive need to control.

Jonas Weichsel, Sammlung, 2009
© Jonas Weichsel, Foto/photo: Axel Schneider