Skip to content Skip to footer

Mudam Luxembourg Showcases First Major Xanti Schawinsky Retrospective Outside Switzerland

Featuring over 100 works, the exhibition explores Schawinsky's multidisciplinary art spanning six decades.

Opening:: July 11, 7pm

Xanti SchawinskyPlay, Life, Illusion
A retrospective
Monster ChetwyndXanti Shenanigans
July 12, 2024–January 5, 2025

Mudam Luxembourg – Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean proudly presents the first retrospective of Swiss-American artist Alexander “Xanti” Schawinsky outside Switzerland. This comprehensive exhibition, running from July 12, 2024, to January 5, 2025, features over 100 pieces, including paintings, photographs, set designs, drawings, and graphic designs. Many of these works are being publicly displayed for the first time since Schawinsky’s death in 1979, contributing to the rediscovery of his influential body of work.

Schawinsky, born in Basel and a central figure of the Bauhaus, studied under renowned figures such as Oskar Schlemmer, Walter Gropius, Paul Klee, and László Moholy-Nagy. He pioneered the concept of “Spectodrama,” a theatrical form integrating color, shape, movement, light, sound, and words. With the rise of Hitler in 1933, Schawinsky, who was Jewish, emigrated first to Italy and then to the USA in 1936, where he taught at Black Mountain College. His work significantly influenced transatlantic artistic exchange and many key 20th-century art movements.

Mudam Luxembourg’s exhibition highlights Schawinsky’s diverse and experimental approach, which spanned theatre, scenography, photography, graphic design, painting, collage, and typography. His innovative contributions to performance art remain relevant, influencing contemporary practices today.

The retrospective is produced in collaboration with the Estate Xanti Schawinsky and includes works across all disciplines Schawinsky explored. The exhibition aims to elevate recognition of Schawinsky’s role in the Bauhaus and Black Mountain College, two pivotal institutions in 20th-century art history, and his impact on interdisciplinary dialogue in art.

In conjunction with the retrospective, British artist Monster Chetwynd has created “Xanti Shenanigans,” a large-scale installation for Mudam’s Foyer. Inspired by Schawinsky’s concept of “mobile theatre,” Chetwynd’s work pays homage to Schawinsky while activating his ideas in the present. The installation features elements such as shapes from Schawinsky’s costumes and stage sets and processes like driving a car over fabric, mirroring Schawinsky’s Track Paintings technique. Rail carts moving costumes around the installation are inspired by Schawinsky’s early work, “Entwurf zu einem fahrbaren Theater (Arena)” (1925).

Curated by Raphael Gygax, this dual presentation fosters a dialogue between a modern stage design pioneer and a contemporary performance artist, emphasizing the shared spirit of cross-disciplinarity and experimentation.

Mudam – The Contemporary Art Museum of Luxembourg
3 Park Dräi Eechelen
L-1499 Luxembourg
Facebook / Instagram / YouTube