Press Release “My best friend was my mother; she was sensible, intelligent, patient, comforting, reasonable, choosy, sophisticated, indispensable, neat and useful – like an ariagnée [French for “spider”]. Louise Bourgeois

Louise Bourgeois’ Sculpture “Maman” on Tour Bern, Bundesplatz, May 24 – June 7, 2011 Zurich, Bürkliplatz, June 10 – July 31, 2011 Geneva, Place de Neuve, August 3 – August 28, 2011

Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010) was one of the most important and influential artist personalities of our times. On December 25, 2011 she would have celebrated her 100th birthday. On this occasion the Fondation Beyeler is presenting an exhibition with a concentrated selection of her work. A highlight in advance will be provided by an installation of her renowned spider sculpture Maman (1999) on Bundesplatz in Bern, Bürkliplatz in Zurich, and at a site in Geneva. Thereafter, Maman will be on view during the duration of the exhibition in Berower Park at the Fondation Beyeler in Riehen/Basel (Sept. 3, 2011 – Jan. 8, 2012). The equally fascinating and threatening monumental bronze sculpture of a spider, titled Maman, is a key work for an understanding of Bourgeois’s art. From the 1940s onwards she drew these insects and depicted them in prints and sculptures. The largest of these spider sculptures is Maman, a monumental piece measuring 927.1 x 891.5 x 1023.6 cm. Maman is a complex sculpture that has various levels of meaning. On the one hand, it is an homage to her mother, who worked as a restorer of tapestries in Paris, and hence, much like a spider, continually renewed woven tissues. On the other hand, for Bourgeois the spider represented a universal symbol for the endless story of life, whose principle is continual renewal. This makes Maman a superb monument to the existence of change. The aspect of mother and maternity also becomes clear in the depiction of the spider as a mother. Under her body she bears a sac made of wire, holding ten eggs carved of marble. After impressive presentations in and in front of the Tate Modern London (2000-07), the Jardin des Tuileries in Paris (2007-08), the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao (from 2001), the Rockefeller Center in New York (2001), and the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg (2001), Maman will be on view for the first time in Switzerland. The installation of the world-famous spider sculpture is itself impressive; wherever it was shown it became a public success, attracting throngs of people. Press images at: The Maman project was enabled by generous support from JTI. Our thanks are also due to the René and Susanne Braginsky Foundation, the Georg and Bertha Schwyzer Foundation, and Galerie Kornfeld und Cie., Bern.

Press Release

Louise Bourgeois À l’infini September 3, 2011 – January 8, 2012 To mark her 100th birthday, the Fondation Beyeler is devoting an homage to Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010), one of the most significant and influential artist personalities of our times. Comprising about twenty items, the exhibition will represent a concentrated selection from the artist’s oeuvre and address its key themes: an involvement with other artists, a concern with her own biography, and the translation of emotions into objects of art. In addition to works and series of works from renowned international museums and private collections, more recent, previously unexhibited works – including the late cycle À l’infini (2008) – will be on view. These will be supplemented by groups of pieces from the Beyeler Collection. Especially revealing insights will be provided by juxtapositions with paintings by Fernand Léger and Francis Bacon, and sculptures by Alberto Giacometti. These artists, with whom Bourgeois maintained personal contacts, were influential and inspiring for her. Our homage to Louise Bourgeois focuses on her amazing ability to cast a spell over the viewer with her art’s poetic moods, trains of association, and unique manner of visual narration. For a long period she negated the opposition, so central to modern art, between figuration and abstraction, and enriched contemporary art with a highly personal brand of objective meaning. This holds especially for the legendary Cells, an example of which will be on view. Born in Paris, Bourgeois united several epochs in her personality and biography: that of the proud and sensitive Parisian bourgeoisie, which gradually declined in the course of the 1920s and, for her, was embodied in the problematic figure of her father; her experience of Parisian modernism as an art student; the shift of the art scene from Paris to New York, in which she was materially involved after her move there in 1938; and finally, the inward and outward turmoil in the U.S. of the day, including the great movement for equal rights to which she decisively contributed. All of these lines of development and diverse experiences combined to shape her personality. This is the sense in which the key work in the exhibition, À l’infini, should be understood – fourteen etchings each of which features two converging lines. The basic form of this impressive and moving work derives from the type of cloth that consists of at least two threads and can be infinitely reproduced and varied. Seen in this light, history, too, might be understood as a tissue spun from threads of memory. The symbol Bourgeois found for spinning filaments and eternal renewal was the spider, which she associated with her mother. A sculpture from the renowned Maman series is to be installed in the Fondation Beyeler park. The exhibition was conceived together with Louise Bourgeois (d. May 31, 2010) and curated by Ulf Küster, curator at the Fondation Beyeler, in cooperation with the Louise Bourgeois Studio, New York.

Louise Bourgeois (1911–2010) Chronology 1911 Louise Joséphine Bourgeois is born in Paris on December 25th. Her parents run a gallery for the restoration and sale of tapestries. The family rents an apartment at 172 Boulevard Saint-Germain on the fourth floor, above the Café de Flore. 1919 In May, the Bourgeois family acquires a property in Antony. The property includes gardens that are separated by the banks of the Bièvre River whose tannin is needed for the dying of the tapestries. 1921–1927 Louise attends the Collège Sèvigné and the Lycée Fénelon in Paris. At the age of twelve, Louise is asked to use her drawing skills to help out in the tapestry workshop. 1923–1928 The Bourgeois family rents the Villa Marcel in Le Cannet. They spend the winters at Le Cannet and the summers at Antony. Louise attends the Lycée International in Cannes. Louise and her mother become friendly with Pierre Bonnard. 1932 Bourgeois enters the Sorbonne briefly to study calculus and geometry, receiving the Baccalauréate in Philosophy from the University of Paris. Her dissertation is on Blaise Pascal and Emmanuel Kant. Through family friends, Louise travels along with a medical group to Scandinavia and Russia. Louise's mother Joséphine dies in Antony. 1933–1938 Bourgeois studies in various artists’ ateliers in Montparnasse and Montmartre. Roger Bissière and Fernand Léger, among others are her teachers. In 1934 she makes a second trip to Russia, this time to see the Moscow Theater and the work of the Russian Constructivists. Bourgeois exhibits a painting at the Salon des Indépendants and the Salon des Artistes Français. 1936 Bourgeois rents her first apartment at 31 rue de Seine. From May 1937 through February 1938, André Breton will open and direct the gallery Gradiva in the same building. 1937–1938 Bourgeois moves to a first floor apartment at 18 Rue Mazarine. She studies art history at L'École du Louvre in order to become a fully certified docent at the Louvre. 1938 She partitions off part of her father's space at 174 Boulevard Saint-Germain in order to open up her own art gallery dealing in prints and paintings by Delacroix, Matisse, Redon, Valadon and Bonnard. There she meets Robert Goldwater, an American art historian who is in Paris doing further research on his doctoral thesis “Primitivism in Modern Painting”. Robert Goldwater proposes to Louise Bourgeois, and they marry on September 12th in Paris at the Eglise Saint-Sulpice. 1938–1939 Bourgeois moves to New York City with Robert Goldwater. They live at 63 Park Avenue.

1939 Louise and Robert return to France to arrange for the adoption of Michel Olivier, an orphan, who was born in Margaux near Bordeaux in 1936. 1940 Jean-Louis Bourgeois is born to Louise Bourgeois and Robert Goldwater on July 4th. 1941 Alain Matthew Clement Bourgeois, Louise's and Robert’s second son, is born on November 12th. 1945 Bourgeois has her first solo show, “Paintings by Louise Bourgeois” at the Bertha Schaefer Gallery in New York City. She curates “Documents, France 1940-1944: Art-Literature-Press of the French Underground” at the Norlyst Gallery with the help of Marcel Duchamp. Bourgeois is included in a group show of work by women artists called “The Women” at Peggy Guggenheim's Art of This Century Gallery in New York. Bourgeois exhibits for the first time at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. 1949 Bourgeois's sculptural debut “Louise Bourgeois, Recent Work 1947-1949: Seventeen Standing Figures in Wood” takes place at the Peridot Gallery in New York. 1950–51 Robert Goldwater receives a Fulbright Scholarship (to research in France) in 1950. The Bourgeois family returns briefly to France in 1951 and lives in Antony. They travel to London where Bourgeois meets Francis Bacon. 1951 Louis Bourgeois passes away. Louise is devastated by her father’s death as well as with having to deal with the closing of the family business. Alfred Barr acquires Sleeping Figure (1950) from the Peridot Gallery for the Museum of Modern Art in New York. During the summers of 1953, 1955, 1957 and 1959 the family returns to Paris. 1955 Louise Bourgeois becomes an American citizen. 1962 The Bourgeois family moves to West 20th Street, where Louise Bourgeois still lived until her death. 1970 Bourgeois begins her involvement with the feminist movement, taking part in demonstrations, benefits, panels and exhibitions. 1973 Bourgeois’s husband Robert Goldwater dies. 1980 th Bourgeois acquires her Brooklyn studio at 475 Dean Street on May 10 . Originally a garment factory, she inherits the contents (e.g. sewing machines, furniture, doors and shelving) and incorporates some of these into her future work. 1981 Louise Bourgeois acquires an abandoned house (circa 1860) in Staten Island for her son Michel. Michel never occupies the house. Louise keeps it empty, turning it into a sculpture called Maison Vide. Maison Vide was also the title for one of Bourgeois’s personages from the 1940s.

1982 “Louise Bourgeois: Retrospective” opens at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The exhibition, curated by Deborah Wye, is the first Retrospective given to a woman artist at MoMA. 1989 The Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris exhibits Articulated Lair (1986) and Henriette (1985) in the exhibition “Magiciens de la Terre” at the Grande Halle La Villette. Henry Geldzahler curates “Louise Bourgeois: Works from the Sixties” at the Dia Art Foundation in Bridgehampton, New York. Organized by Peter Weiermair, Bourgeois has her first European Retrospective at the Frankfurter Kunstverein, “Louise Bourgeois: A Retrospective Exhibition”. 1991 Bourgeois exhibits six Cells (Cell I – Cell VI) at the Carnegie International in Pittsburgh. The exhibition is organized by Lynne Cooke and Mark Francis. 1992 Louise Bourgeois exhibits Precious Liquids (1992) at Documenta IX. 1993 Bourgeois represents the United States at the American Pavilion of the Venice Biennale. She exhibits her first large scale Spider at the Brooklyn Museum. 1995 Marie-Laure Bernadac organizes “Louise Bourgeois: Pensées-plumes” at the Musée National d'Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris. The Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris presents the traveling exhibition “Louise Bourgeois: Sculpture, Environments, Dessins 1944–1994”. 1996 Bourgeois is included in the Sao Paulo Bienal curated by Paulo Herkenhoff and Jerry Gorovoy. 1997 Bourgeois is commissioned by the French Government to make a large scale work Toi et Moi in cast and polished aluminum for the architect Dominique Perrault's new Bibliothèque Nationale de France in Paris. The Fondazione Prada in Milan exhibits “Louise Bourgeois: Blue Days and Pink Days” organized by Pandora Tabatabai Asbaghi. Violette Editions in London publishes Louise Bourgeois: Destruction of the Father / Reconstruction of the Father (Writings and Interviews 1923-–1997), edited and with texts by Marie-Laure Bernadac and HansUlrich Obrist. The National Medal of Arts is presented to Bourgeois by President Clinton at the White House. Her son Jean-Louis Bourgeois accepts the award on her behalf. The Arts Club of Chicago exhibits recent sculptures as well as The Insomnia Series (1994–1995) in “Louise Bourgeois”. 1998 The Moderna Museet in Stockholm exhibits Passage Dangereux (1997) in “Wounds: Between Democracy and Redemption in Contemporary Art”. Passage Dangereux is subsequently shown at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in Soho in “Premises: Invested Spaces in Visual Arts & Architecture from France 1958–1998”, organized by the Centre Pompidou. 1999 Bourgeois receives the 1999 Praemium Imperiale Award in the sculpture category from the Japan Art Association.


Bourgeois participates in the 48 International Exhibition of Contemporary Art, La Biennale di Venezia, Venice, Italy, curated by Harald Szeeman. 2000 Bourgeois is commissioned for the inaugural installation at Turbine Hall of Bankside Power Station, opening as the new Tate Gallery of Modern Art. Bourgeois displays a thirty foot steel and marble Spider called Maman (1999) and three steel architectural towers called I Do, I Undo and I Redo (1999–2000) that employ the use of staircases and mirrors and incorporate fabric and marble sculptures within the interiors. 2001 The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao purchases the thirty foot bronze, stainless steel and marble Spider Maman (1999) and installs it outside of their titanium paneled building designed by Frank O. Gehry. The State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg mounts a Bourgeois Retrospective, their first exhibition ever of a living American artist. The thirty foot bronze Spider sculpture Maman (1999) and two eleven foot Spider sculptures (1996) are installed in New York City’s Rockefeller Center, organized by the Public Art Fund. 2002 Galerie Hauser & Wirth in Zurich exhibits “Louise Bourgeois: Works In Marble”, accompanied by a major publication on Bourgeois’s stone pieces. Bourgeois is represented by four of her Portrait Cells (2000) in “Documenta 11” in Kassel, Germany. 2003 Dia Center for the Arts inaugurates their new space in Beacon, New with an exhibition of plaster, latex and bronze sculptures from the 1960s, along with The Destruction of the Father (1974) and the Cell Spider (1997). The Mori Art Museum in Tokyo acquires the thirty foot bronze, stainless steel and marble Spider Maman (1999) and installs it outside of the newly inaugurated museum. 2004 Daros Exhibition in Zurich exhibits their extensive Bourgeois collection. The National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa acquires the thirty foot bronze, stainless steel and marble Spider Maman (1999). 2007–2009 The Tate Modern in London organizes a Retrospective of Bourgeois’s work that travels from there to the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, and the Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden, Washington DC. The French Legion of Honor medal presented by President Sarkozy to Louise Bourgeois at artist’s Chelsea home on. 2010 Fondazione Vedova in Venice exhibits a Retrospective of the fabric drawings, curated by Germano Celante, “Louise Bourgeois: The Fabric Drawings”. st

Dies on May 31 .

The Spider is an Ode to my mother. She was my best friend. Like a spider, my mother was a weaver. My family was in the business of tapestry restoration, and my mother was in charge of the workshop. Like spiders, my mother was very clever. Spiders are friendly presences that eat mosquitos. We know that mosquitos spread diseases and are therefore unwanted. So, spiders are helpful and protective, just like my mother.

-- Louise Bourgeois

Louise Bourgeois MAMAN, 1999 365 x 351 x 403"; 927.1 x 891.5 x 1023.6 cm. Steel and Marble, unique Bronze, Stainless Steel and Marble Edition of six with one Artist Proof

Exhibition History: Tate Modern, London "Louise Bourgeois: Inaugural Installation of the Tate Modern at Turbine Hall" (5/12/00-11/26/00; steel) Den Haag Sculptuur, The Hague, The Netherlands "Carnaval des Animaux" (6/21/01-9/11/01; steel). The Bourgeois was installed in the Atrium of the Townhall of The Hague. Rockefeller Center, New York, NY "Louise Bourgeois: Spiders" (6/21/01-9/4/01; bronze), organized in association with the Public Art Fund. The State Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia "Louise Bourgeois" (10/9/01-1/13/02; bronze), and for a period of extended loan. Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Bilbao, Spain "Louise Bourgeois" (10/2/01-4/21/02; bronze) Playhouse Square’s Star Plaza, Cleveland, OH “Louise Bourgeois’ Spiders” (6/02-9/02; bronze), organized in association with Cleveland Public Art, Inc. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk, Denmark "Louise Bourgeois" (2/15/03-6/22/03; bronze). "Maman" installed in Nytorv Square in Copenhagen. National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa "The Body Transformed" (5/15/03-10/12/03; bronze)

Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids, MI "Maman" (6/12/0311/1/03; bronze) National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Canada "Noah's Ark" (6/12/04-10/3/04; bronze); installed in La Cité de l'énergie, Shawinigan, Quebec. Schlosspark Wendlinghausen, Dörentrup, Germany "Garden-Landscape OstWestfalenLippe" (6/17/04-10/17/04; bronze) Wilfredo Lam Center, Havana, Cuba "Louise Bourgeois: One and Others" (2/4/05-4/26/05; bronze) Museum of Modern Art, Ostend, Belgium "Beaufort 2006" (4/1/06-10/1/06; bronze installed over the memorial stone of Ensor in the garden of the church Onze-LieveVrouw-ter-Duinenkerk). The Wanås Foundation, Knislinge, Sweden "The Wanås Foundation: 20th Anniversary" (12/1/06-8/31/07; bronze) Tate Modern, London, England “Louise Bourgeois: Retrospective” (10/10/071/20/08; bronze). Traveled to the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France (3/5/08-6/2/08; installed in Tuileries by the Louvre Museum) Museo Nazionale di Capodimonte, Naples, Italy “Louise Bourgeois for Capodimonte” (10/17/08-1/25/09; bronze) Fundación PROA, Buenos Aires, Argentina “Louise Bourgeois: The Return of the Repressed” (3/19/11-6/19/11). Travels to Museu de Arte Moderna, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (7/7/11-11/13/11).

Selected Literature: Morris, Frances and Warner, Marina. Louise Bourgeois (exhibition catalogue), London, England: The Tate Modern, 2000. Steel reproduced on pages 8 (detail), 46 and 47. Castro, Jan Garden. "Louise Bourgeois: Turning Myths Inside Out", Sculpture Magazine, January/February 2001, Vol. 20, No. 1, pages 16-23 and cover. Steel reproduced on page 21. Sylvester, Julie (curator). Louise Bourgeois at the Hermitage (exhibition catalogue), St. Petersburg, Russia: The State Hermitage Museum, 2001. Bronze cast exhibited with steel sculpture reproduced on page 87. Greenberg, Jan and Jordan, Sandra. Runaway Girl: The Artist Louise Bourgeois, New York, New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2003. Bronze reproduced on page 64. Storr, Robert, Paulo Herkenhoff and Allan Schwartzman. Louise Bourgeois, London, England: Phaidon Press Limited, 2003. Bronze reproduced on page 4.

Théberge, Pierre. The Body Transformed (exhibition catalogue), Ottawa, Ontario: National Gallery of Canada, 2003. Steel reproduced on pp 22-23 though bronze exhibited. Wachtmeister, Marika with Patrick Amsellem, Ingela Lind, Bera Nordal, Griselda Pollock. Louise Bourgeois: Maman, Knislinge, Sweden: The Wanås Foundation, 2007. Bronze reproduced on cover and throughout publication. Morris, Frances with essays by Paulo Herkenhoff, Julia Kristeva, Donald Kuspit, Elisabeth Lebovici, Mignon Nixon, Linda Nochlin, Alex Potts, Rob Storr, et al. Louise Bourgeois, (Retrospective exhibition catalogue), London, UK: Tate Publishing, 2007. Steel reproduced on page 170 and bronze on page 253. (Reprinted in 2008 for US venues of tour, and a version also published in French by the Èditions du Centre Pompidou with supplemental images.) Bernadac, Marie-Laure and Jonas Storsve with essays by Paulo Herkenhoff, Julia Kristeva, Donald Kuspit, Elisabeth Lebovici, Frances Morris, Mignon Nixon, Linda Nochlin, Alex Potts, Rob Storr, et al. Louise Bourgeois, (Retrospective exhibition catalogue, with supplemental images to Tate’s 2007 version, and in French), Paris, France: Èditions du Centre Pompidou, 2008. Bronze reproduced on page 193. Spinosa, Nicola (Introduction) with texts by Achille Bonito Oliva, Donald Kuspit, Philip Larratt-Smith, Scott Lyon-Wall. Per Capodimonte Louise Bourgeois (exhibition catalogue) Naples, Italy: Electa Napoli, 2008. Bronze reproduced on pages 9, 22, 23 and 27 (detail). Coxon, Ann. Louise Bourgeois, London, UK: Tate Publishing, 2010. Reproduced on pages 6, 70 and 71. Larratt-Smith, Juliet Mitchell, Mignon Nixon, Paul Verhaege & Julie de Ganck, Meg Harris Williams. Louise Bourgeois: El Retourno de lo Reprimado, (exhibition catalogue, Spanish Edition), Buenos Aires, Argentina: Fundación PROA, 2011. Reproduced as plate 59. Küster, Ulf. Louise Bourgeois, Ostfildern 2011. Appears October 2011.

Louise Bourgeois’s sculpture “Maman” on tour Bern, Bundesplatz, May 24 – June 7, 2011 Zurich, Bürkliplatz, June 10 – July 31, 2011 Geneva, Place de Neuve, August 3 – August 28, 2011

The Maman project was enabled by generous support from JTI. In the context of its cultural engagement, JTI supports projects worldwide, focusing on contemporary art. In addition, JTI and the JTI Foundation facilitate programs in the fields of the environment, disaster aid, and social welfare. JTI is a leading international tobacco product manufacturer which operates in 120 countries and has headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, where it employs 700 people. In Dagmersellen, Lucerne, it has one of the most modern cigarette factories in the world and employs 400 people. Our thanks are also due to the René and Susanne Braginsky Foundation, the Georg and Bertha Schwyzer Foundation, and Galerie Kornfeld und Cie., Bern.