Wolfgang Laib sifting hazelnut pollen, 1992. Courtesy Sperone Westwater Gallery, New York

Wolfgang Laib: Pollen from Hazelnut

Museum of Modern Art, New York

January 2013
MoMA's floor is turning yellow this month, when German conceptual artist Wolfgang Laib will install his largest pollen-based installation to date. Measuring approximately 18 x 21 feet, Pollen from Hazelnut will be on view in The Donald B. and Catherine C. Marron Atrium until 11 March, 2013. Laib (b. 1950) is known for creating artworks with natural materials such as milk, pollen, beeswax, rice, and marble. His first pollen field dates back to 1977. Since then Laib has been collecting pollen every year in the forests and meadows near his hometown in southern Germany. It is a meditative and solitary ceremony that requires concentration, devotion, discipline, knowledge, and rituality, both in the process of collecting the pollen, and in the moment of sieving it carefully on the gallery floor. After the exhibition the artist retrieves the pollen, cleans it, and stores it. Both potent and fragile, material and immaterial, natural and artificial, the pollen represents, with its vibrant colour, a celebration of life, of the primordial energy.
While Pollen in Hazelnut is installed at the MoMA, the artist is also in conversation with Agnes Gund, President Emerita of the Museum, on Wednesday 13 February, 2013. Speaking about the artwork and his creative process, Ann Temkin, The Marie-Josée and Henry Kravis Chief Curator of Painting and Sculpture, moderates. Tickets can be bought online.

After the exhibition at MoMA, Laib will inaugurate a new installation at The Phillips Collection in Washington DC: his first site-specific, permanent wax room in a museum (from 2 March,2013).
21 January - 11 March, 2013