The Museum of Contemporary Art of Barcelona (MACBA) presents Oferta publica / Public Tender, the first major presentation of Rita McBride’s work in Spain. In this exhibition, McBride re-examines the conceptual strategy made famous by Michael Asher in 1973 at his seminal exhibition at Galleria Toselli in Milan, where he sandblasted the gallery walls removing layer after layer of white paint to reveal its original pre-art brown patina.
McBride expands this act of purification at the MACBA by removing most the museum’s temporary walls, skylight coverings, and door closures added to the museum architecture since the original opening 17 years ago. The result is dramatic in the way it shows how institutional space is modified by time and necessity.
In a direct dialogue with the building’s architect, Richard Meier, the artist has returned most of the museum’s second floor to its initial and intentional state. This cleansing of the architecture puts the exhibition space on view as an object of study, putting it at par with the artworks it houses.
With this bold intervention McBride has carefully re-constituted an environment in which art and architecture are synonymous. The artist’s excavation of the struggle between the inner workings of the museum and its architecture creates a powerful transparency, reestablishing the connection between the public function and the museum’s day to day custodial operations.
Dates: from May 19 to September 24.
Location: Museum of Contemporary Art of Barcelona. (MACBA). Plaça dels Angels, 1. 08001 Barcelona. Spain.
Opening hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursdays and Fridays from 11am to 7.30pm. Saturdays from 10am to 8pm. Sundays from 10am to 3pm.
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