Read | 22. Jun 2022

C Is For Curator. And Classy. And Curious Forever

Bice Curiger will forever be the one person in the art world I admire the most. Beause of her knowledge combined with her humble personality. And because of those three little friends that moved into my life some twenty years ago.

Those "Two Lizzards and a Man" have been the work of art within the special edition of "Parkett Magazine" no.36. They were created by Stephan Balkenhol and moved with us to South France, then to Berlin and live now as loyal fellows with me and my books in Switzerland.

"Parkett"`s 101 publications were published from 1984 - 2017 and include direct collaborations with compelling contemporary artists. In total 270 artists’ portraits have been published, each comprising of three to five texts by renowned authors and curators. All collaborating artists also created an editioned artwork, whose form could take any shape; from prints, sculptures, installations, media works, to paintings and drawings.

And this maybe most interesting magazine was founded by Bice Curiger together with Dieter von Graffenried and Jacqueline Burckhardt as an affirmation of their specific enthusiams for a transatlantic art scene exchange between New York and Europe, the slow rythm of a dual publication was part of the mission: Go slow, go deeper, learn.

The name "Parkett" stands for an elegant hardwood floor in German as well as the basic seating in movie theaters - what appealed to its founders as a mix of elegance and democracy. Artist friend Enzo Gucchi suggested that Mama LIvia Curiger embroider the logo of Parkett on white linen.

Parkett’s books and artworks have been sought after by museums, readers, libraries and collectors worldwide. The 33 year time capsule has been presented in museums on three continents including MoMA/New York, Whitechapel Art Gallery/London, UCCA/Beijing, Kanazawa/Japan, Centre Pompidou/Paris, Kunsthaus/Zurich, SAC/Seoul and other venues.

I asked Bice Curiger to write an art column for German "Cosmopolitan" when I was the editor from 1994 to 1998. And she did it! Explaining one pheonomen, one artist, one show per issue. Becoming the Cruator of Zürcher Kunsthaus at that very time as well.

She went on to curate shows for Centre Pompidou and Guggenheim Museum among others and in 2011 Curiger became only the third woman to curate the Venice Bienale. And transformed it into a very different show.

Since 2004 she is also the editor of the Tate ETC. the magazine of Tate Gallery.

Bice Curiger is currently the artistic director of the "Foundation Vincent van Gogh" in Arles and organizes exhibits that foster relationships beweeen van Gogh and contemporary artists.

I haven´t been there yet but will go this summer. So stay tuned.

Until then I wil spend more time with my Balkenohl friends and read more in her brilliantly produced memoir "C is for Curator", available now at your favorite bookstore.