Objectif Exhibitions is proud to host the first anticipated retrospective of US-born artist Megan Francis Sullivan (b.1975, lives and works in Berlin). The exhibition will offer a panorama of the artist’s work from her earliest paintings in the 1990s, through her editorial and sculptural projects in the 2000s and 2010s – including new pieces produced specifically for the occasion.
The retrospective aims to capture some of the restless variety of Sullivan’s output, which has included music, equestrian sport, video, publications, sculpture and painting. The retrospective format – usually reserved for late-career artists – also lends itself to Sullivan’s approach, which frequently alludes to known and lesser-known outtakes of cultural production, by reenacting, translating or simply encountering material from other artists or cultural sources. In Sullivan’s expanding oeuvre, references get both flattened and reorganised, from artworks by Rosa Bonheur, Tom Burr and Cézanne, to the John Hejduk-designed library tables at the Cooper Union, 1970s gay magazines and the ‘Hunterklasse’ equestrian category.
Guiding these historical inquiries is Sullivan’s interest in a queer sensitivity and subjectivity, which – with understated elegance – eschews the risk of ponderous reflexivity. A Megan Francis Sullivan retrospective could therefore only be anticipated, never fulfilled: her imagery skips at the surface of style, creating aesthetic and conceptual ripples that belie their intensity. If Sullivan were a philosopher, her genre would be the aphorism: elisions and lightness of touch allow sensation to wander, provoking unexpected lapses and pleasures.
Sullivan’s retrospective will be accompanied by a limited edition catalogue raisonné, published by Objectif, inventorying all of the artist’s works to date.
Megan Francis Sullivan studied at the Cooper Union School of Art, New York; the Städelschule, Frankfurt; and the Jan van Eyck Academie, Maastricht. She has had solo exhibitions at Midway Contemporary, Minneapolis; Mathew, Berlin; Freymond-Guth Fine Arts, Zurich; and Broadway 1602, New York. Her work has been included in numerous group shows, at (to name a few) Halle für Kunst, Lüneburg; castillo/corrales, Paris; apexart, New York; and Kunstmuseum, Bern. Her publications include Zipper Keeper (2015); For Phil Andros (2011); Die Hunterklasse (with Susanne Kappmeier, 2008); MAT Magazine (2007–8); and HBL–Hedgebrook Lane (2004).