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Michel Majerus

The painter Michel Majerus (1967-2002) built an international reputation for himself during his short career. Drawing freely for inspiration from the art of the twentieth century, especially from Pop Art, but also from digital iconography, the world of advertising as well as the vocabulary of gestural painting, he had a predilection for large formats and installations that play with spaces. For Majerus, all the elements in his paintings had equal value. Paying no heed to hierarchy, he used them like numbers, symbols loaded with history and the meanings of what they represent.

Halbzeit by Luxemburg artist Michel Majerus (1967-2002) is a gestural painting which seems to have been rapidly executed. The violet layer, nervously scratched into wet paint, covers and effaces a previous composition. Two inscriptions and a logo complete this work which seems ready to be “consumed” as quickly as it was produced. The effect is immediate and visceral as in the slogan Thirst – juice, Desire – product is the rhythm which links consumer and advertisement and represents the minimum of time required to bypass thought.

A non-figurative and gestural painting like Untitled (Violet) (1997) seems at first glance to fall within Abstract Expressionism. However, Majerus adopted a certain irony. He deliberately confined the area of pictorial action to the upper corner of the canvas while highlighting the splashes of paint, that is to say, the traces of the artistic process. Rather than the abstract painting itself, he offers the viewer the image of an abstract painting and thus subverting artistic convention.

Artworks

  1. Michel Majerus Halbzeit, 2002

    Acrylique sur toile
    220 x 200 cm
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Acquisition 2002
    © Photo : Galerie Max Hetzler

  1. Michel Majerus Running in Cycles, 2001

    Sérigraphie couleur sur PVC
    500 x 750 cm
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Acquisition 2002
    © Photo : Jens Ziehe, Berlin

  1. Michel Majerus Untitled, 1996

    Huile sur toile
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Dépôt 2019 – Collection American Friends of Mudam, donation de Raymond J. Learsy
    © Photo : Rémi Villaggi | Mudam Luxembourg

  1. Michel Majerus Untitled (Violet), 1997

    Peinture acrylique sur toile
    300 x 320 cm
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Donation 2006 - Les Amis des Musées d’Art et d’Histoire Luxembourg
    © Photo : Jens Ziehe, Berlin

Marina Abramović, "Video Portrait Gallery", 1975-1998 | Collection Mudam Luxembourg | Acquisition 2001
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