Thomas Schutte’s “United Enemies” in the grounds of London’s Serpentine Gallery

Thomas Schutte: United Enemies (2011)

I wrote about Thomas Schutte almost a year ago. Today I revisit the great German sculptor on the occasion of his exhibition “Faces and Figures” in London’s Serpentine Gallery. When I started writing this article I had the intention of covering the whole exhibition, but as soon as I started, I relaized that I should focus only on the monumental duet of pairs of sculptures, the “United Enemies”.

Thomas Schutte: United Enemies

As you approach the gallery which lies in Hype Park, by the Serpentine lake, you cannot fail to notice the two bronze couples of the the United Enemies.

Thomas Schutte” United Enemies (Detail)

Each pair of figures is tied together by rope.

Thomas Schutte: United Enemies (detail)

The Enemies are so close and yet so far apart.

Thomas Schutte: United Enemies (detail)

This profile reminded me of Bismarck and the Prussian State.

Thomas Schutte: United Enemies (detail)

They do not look at each other. They appear austere and detached from ordinary life. As if born to be special.

Thomas Schutte: United Enemies (detail)

They are wrapped in some sort of a heavy cloth, what came to my mind (as a metaphor) is felt, as used by Beuys.

Thomas Schutte: United Enemies (detail)

Beuys, the great German artist, has influenced everyone. Schutte not only seems to be taking this in his stride, but in my eyes plays with artisticl legacy all over the place. In what follows, I offer my personal and totally arbitrary interpretative links.

Thomas Schutte: United Enemies (detail)

August Rodin’s Balzac

Ernst Barlach’s “Der Mann im Stock”

Thomas Schutte: United Enemies (detail)

Francis Bacon’s “Study after Velazquez’s Pope Innocent”

Thomas Schutte: United Enemies (detail)

Georg Grosz’s “Pillars of Society”

2 comments

  1. πολύ καλό…

    τι μου θύμισες με τη λίμνη Σερπαντάιν στο Hyde Park…

    και οι συνδέσεις που κάνεις με τα άλλα έργα καθόλου τυχαίες

    γεια

    1. μια επισκεψη στην γκαλλερι σερπενταιν ειναι παντα ομορφη…

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