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2020

09.12.2020-30.01.2021

Babysteps into Masochism
Emanuel Layr
Vienna, Austria

10.09.2020-07.11.2020

Fate of a cell / Η Τύχη ενός Κυττάρου
Martinos
Athens

19.09.2020-31.10.2020

Ice to Gas
Pedro Cera
Lisbon

11.09.2020-17.19.2020

Various Others
Sperling, München
Munich, Germany

09.11.2019-08.03.2020

R.M.M. Rockefeller Center
Rockefeller Center
New York, NY

09.11.2019-08.03.2020

L’homme qui marche
Kunsthalle Bielefeld
Bielefeld, Germany

2019

27.09.2019―26.01.2020

My Fetish Years
Museum für Gegenwartskunst
Frankfurt, Germany

11.01.―16.02.2019

Germanic Artifacts
Bortolami
New York, USA

2018

13.10.―22.12.2018

Positioner
Matthew Marks
Los Angeles, USA

15.05.―21.07.2018

THEMOVE
Emanuel Layr Gallery
Vienna, Austria

03.03.―13.05.2018

An Idea of Late German Sculpture; To The People Of New York, 2018
Kunsthalle Zürich
Zürich, Switzerland

09.03.―22.07.2018

Between The Waters
Whitney Museum of Art
New York, USA

17.03.―28.04.2018

Embrassade
Fons Welters
Amsterdam, Netherlands

2017

19.01.―08.04.2017

Year Of The Monkey
Galerie Emanuel Layr
Rome, Italy

28.04.―30.07.2017

SCHREI MICH NICHT AN, KRIEGER!
Schirn Kunsthalle
Frankfurt, Germany

09.04.―30.05.2017

Vertical Gardens
Antenna Space
Shanghai, China

03.06.―03.09.2017

Die Kommenden
Sprengel Museum
Hannover, Germany

14.09.―25.10.2017

in awe
Kunsthalle Exnergasse
Vienna, Austria

06.2017

Art Basel Parcours
Art Basel
Basel, Switzerland

2016

07.06.―11.09.2016

Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions
Kaufmann Repetto
Milan, Italy

28.01.―27.02.2016

RUN, RUN, RUNWAY
Golsa
Oslo, Norway

27.02.―26.03.2016

Heartbreak Highway
Real Fine Arts
New York, USA

17.06.―27.08.2016

My History of Flow
S.A.L.T.S.
Basel, Switzerland

04.07.―16.09.2016

fat center trash land 1―7, 2016
Small scale Sculpture triennial Fellbach
Fellbach, Germany

09.09.―05.11.2016

Fieber
Emanuel Layr Gallery
Wien, Austria

04.07.―16.09.2016

In Bed with M/L Artspace
9th Berlin Biennale
Berlin, Germany

03.12.2016―12.02.2017

Available Light
Kunstverein Braunschweig
Braunschweig, Germany

2015

2015

Surrounding Audience
The New Museum Triennial
New York, USA

09.2015

Emerging Artist Fellowship Exhibition
Queens
New York, USA

26.02.―04.04.2015

Looking at you (revived) again
Off Vendom
New York, USA

28-05.―16.05.2015

One step away from further Hell
Vilma Gold
London, UK

23.11.2015―08.01.2016

National Gallery 2―Empire Map
Chewday’s
London, UK

22.02.―05.04.2015

The problem today is not the other but the self
MINI/Goethe-Institut Ludlow 38
New York, USA

2014

09.05.2014-19.07.2014

Warm Math
Balice Hertling, New York
New York

05.2014

Frieze New York
Frieze Art Fair at Randall’s Island
New York, USA

02.05.―07.06.2014

Bloomington: Mall Of America
Bortolami Gallery
New York, USA

27.04.―01.06.2014

YES, I’M PREGNANT
Skulpturen museum Glaskasten
Marl, Germany

22.03.―17.05.2014

Geburt und Familie
White Flag Projects
Saint Louis, USA

08.―09.2014

Piracanga Freedom?
Two Hotel, Piracanga Beach
Bahia, Brazil

06.06.―14.08.2014

Chat Jet (Part 2), Sculpture in Reflection
Künstlerhaus KM
Austria

06.06.―03.08.2015

Revelry
Kunsthalle Bern
Bern, Switzerland

13.09.―18.10.2014

DIE
Parisa Kind
Frankfurt, Germany

2013

14.12.2013-08.02.2014

Soft Wear
Sandy Brown
Berlin

24.02.―21.04.2013

From One Artist To Another
Kunstverein Wiesbaden
Germany

13.09.―18.10.2013

On Thomas Bayrle
The Artist’s Institute
New York, USA

05.2013

The Doors
Skulpturenpark Köln
Köln, Germany

27.06.―09.08.2013

Freak Out
Greene Naftali Gallery
New York, USA

27.09.―09.11.2013

Love of Technology
Museum of Contemporary Art
North Miami, USA

2012

05.02.2012-22.04.2012

Hang Harder
Neuer Aachener Kunstverein
Aachen, Germany

12.2012

Lena Henke: First Faces, book launch at Karma Books, New York
Karma
New York, NY

01.06.―29.07.2012

Core, Cut, Care
Oldenburger Kunstverein
Germany

14.09.―21.10.2012

H․ H․ Bennett, Lena Henke and Cars
1857
Oslo, Norway

2011

15.06.―07.08.2011

Andrei Koschmieder puts
Real Fine Arts
New York, NY

23.04.―18.06.2011

Schlangen im Stall, “snakes in the barn”
Galerie Parisa Kind Frankfurt
Frankfurt am Main, Germany

2010

05.2010

WIR UEBER UNS
Neue Alte Bruecke Frankfurt
Frankfurt am Main, Germany

08.2010

you have four eyes, (First ladies)
V 8
Karlsruhe, Germany

10.2010

Scandinavian blonde
Mousonturm
Frankfurt, Germany

28.11.2009 - 23.02.2010

Stone Temple Playground Collection
Kornhauschen Aschaffenburg
Aschaffenburg, Germany

28.11.2009 - 23.02.2010

Tokyo Hotel und deine Mutter
Literaturhaus
Frankfurt, Germany

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11.09.2020-17.19.2020
Various Others
Sperling, München
Munich, Germany
Text by: Pia-Marie Remmers





All the works on view here have one thing in common: horses. That is not a new motif in art—depictions of horses exist in art history on all continents. They are among the earliest pictorial subjects, predating academic art history and reaching back to the deep history of humanity and its artistic impulse, appearing in some of the oldest cave paintings in Lascaux, France, which are approximately seventeen thousand years old.

Horses appear in every epoch and every artistic movement. Since their domestication and systematic use as working animals, they have mostly been shown together with humans: in equestrian portraits, scenes of battle, or harnessed to a quadriga. From the eighteenth century on, the workhorse was an important feature of depictions of rural life, while, at the other end of the social spectrum, the noble steed, as an emblem of successful breeding, functioned as a status symbol for the bourgeoisie. In the modern age, with the technical advances of the twentieth century, motorized vehicles gradually replaced the horse—in agriculture, as means of transport, and as companions in battle—and thereby “fell out of a history to which it had been indispensable for thousands of years,” as Ulrich Rauff writes in his 2015 book Das letzte Jahrhundert der Pferde (The Last Century of the Horse). Rauff describes the “split” or “divorce” of people and horses—but this shift did not take place in art. There was, however, a change in the horse’s role, for example in Jannis Kounellis’s 1969 Senza Titulo (Dodici cavalli) (Untitled [Twelve Horses]). He arranged the horses in the white, rectangular (pictorial) space of the Galleria L’Attico in Rome as if presenting them on a canvas, but at the same time he broke with all the conventions of equestrian painting in that, with the horses’ help, he created a kind of performative readymade. But after their cultural separation from humans, what can horses represent in artworks except “happy pensioners,” as Peter Sloterdijk has described them?

Megan Francis Sullivan asked an animal photographer to take pictures of her own pony, Marie, in the style of the classical horse portraits of the British painter George Stubbs. The photographs show Marie’s muscular body and her proud bearing, but are actually about a shift in medium and historical context. By making use of the infrastructure of contemporary equestrian sports culture (professional horse photography, pony breeding) and indicating the presence of farmed fields, wind turbines, and the pitched rooves of German terraced houses, she transforms Stubbs’s orderly paintings of the living status symbols of the eighteenth century into evidence of the current relationship between nature, culture, and class. Dominique Knowles is also the owner of a horse, which goes by the name of Tazz. Their close connection to one another reflects Knowles’s understanding of the equal standing and profound companionship of humans and animals. His paintings bring to mind the prehistoric cultural practice of cave painting and testify to the veneration in which humans have held the natural world. His video work Tahlequah, 2019, is a tribute to the capacity of animals to mourn and show empathy, among them the orca Tahlequah, who carried her stillborn calf around with her for seventeen days, or the chimpanzee Flint, who died out of grief for his dead mother.

No horses as such appear in Lena Henke’s works; in their stead are parts and accessories such as hooves, saddles, riding boots, or a tail: they create hybrids of horse and human, city and stable. With a soldering iron Henke has burned the contours of her images irreversibly into tautly stretched leather and thus created a material point of no return akin to that of her model of Manhattan cast in bronze, City Lights (Dead Horse Bay), 2016. In the center of New York, shrunk to a fraction of its actual size, connections to the artist’s life appear alongside
references to the aggressive city planning of the twentieth century. In the leather works, meanwhile, imagery from “pony play” pornography coexists with vulvas and phallic-seeming skyscrapers. In Henke’s work, the horse is a fetish object, and makes manifest multilayered fantasies of domination and submission.

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