Figure in the Garden

Katharina Fritsch at The Museum of Modern Art

A brilliant yellow Madonna, a set of skeleton feet, a grey giant leaning obdurately on his club, a green and boyish-looking St. Michael slaying the dragon, a pitch-black snake – these and other figures make up a curious cast of characters on view in 2013 at MoMA’s Sculpture Garden in New York.

Figurengruppe (Group of Figures) is a tightly arranged ensemble of nine sculptures by the German contemporary artist Katharina Fritsch, first conceived in 2006–08 in painted polyester and recast in 2010–11 in durable lacquered copper and bronze for outdoor display.

The group makes its MoMA debut as part of Figure in the Garden, a seasonal outdoor installation that unites figurative works from the museum’s collection from the late 19th century to the present.

Fritsch is best known for fastidiously crafted figures, animals, and everyday objects placed in unexpected arrangements and juxtapositions, uncovering new, sometimes unsettling meanings about our past and present histories.

English and German text.

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