Thomas Schütte

Faces & Figures

Over the last two decades, Thomas Schütte has created watercolours and drawings of acquaintances and friends, as well as numerous self-portraits, including the Mirror Drawing works. His drawings are often created in series, approaching the same subject numerous times as a means of engaging with its true nature.

Schütte’s drawings feed closely into his sculptural portraits, which are created in a similar spirit; the artist views working from observation as an opposition to a real, physical world that is constantly changing.

Alongside his works on paper, he features ceramic and bronze sculptures, including the impressive Vater Staat (Father State), a towering steel figure that paradoxically appears frail and isolated in spite of its scale.

This catalogue features a key 1967 essay by critic John Berger on the subject of the ‘portrait’, republished here for the artist’s exhibition at Serpentine Gallery.

Published on the occasion of the exhibition Thomas Schütte: Faces & Figures at Serpentine Gallery, London, 25 September – 18 November 2012.

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