In Focus: Lothar Baumgarten | Marian Goodman Gallery
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Lothar Baumgarten, 2006 in the Museum Kurhaus Kleve © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2020.

Marian Goodman Gallery is pleased to continue IN FOCUS, our artist-centric newsletter, where we delve deeply into one artist on the MGG roster at a time. Aiming to show a fuller picture of the breadth of our artists' careers, we will feature our favorite stories, podcasts, interviews, artists’ writings, and videos from the archive, as well as new and upcoming projects.

Over the last four and a half decades, German conceptual artist Lothar Baumgarten (1944 – 2018) has garnered critical acclaim and respect for his extensive body of work, which uses a wide range of media to question the very core ideas and systems of representation – from ephemeral sculptures, to photography, slide projections, films, sound recordings, drawings, prints, books, short stories, as well as site-specific works and architecture-related interventions.

Today, we explore a side of Baumgarten’s practice dedicated to sound. Each project depicts the soundscapes and landscapes of upstate New York, from the recordings of ice thawing on the Hudson river banks to the sounds of the region’s native fauna.


An audio piece
published as part of the CD set “Lothar Baumgarten - Seven Sounds / Seven Circles – Mohicanituk I, II, III, IV, V, VI, VII” released to accompany the artist’s exhibition Seven Sounds / Seven Circles at Kunsthaus Bregenz in 2009.

Each sonic composition was recorded on the banks of the Hudson River in upstate New York, and features the sounds of native fauna, broken only by the passing of the occasional Amtrak train. This sound panorama is accompanied by a set of photographs, as well as an essay by the artist.

The full CD set is available for purchase at Kunsthaus Bregenz.


Manuel Borja-Villel and João Fernandes discuss Baumgarten’s 2016 exhibition, The ship is going under, the ice is breaking through, at the Palacio de Cristal, Madrid, organized by Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía.

“Lothar Baumgarten has opened up new possibilities of artistic expression and reflection through an oeuvre that questions Western systems of thought and representation as well as the ways our perception of and relation to other cultures are constructed..."


A text
by Lothar Baumgarten, circle about circles, written in relation to the sound and photographic materials he created in upstate New York.