12/10/2019 - 05/01/2020

Anri Sala (*1974) presents his first monographic exhibition in the Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg in an ambitious installation across the galleries of level 1, the Grand Hall and the Pavilion of Mudam Luxembourg – Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean. An ensemble of new and recent works juxtaposed with older pieces, will be accompanied by a major work, The Last Resort (2017), a sound installation of thirty-eight snare drums originally created for the Kaldor Public Art Projects in Sydney and now presented for the first time in Europe. 

Anri Sala, The Last Resort, 2017 © Photo : Pedro Greig

Far from being a mere companion to the image, sound plays a major role in Anri Sala’s work: it reveals space and is embraced for its ability to “open up” the present time. Associated with animated sculptures, drawings, photographs or sound installations, his films depict a surprisingly varied musical spectrum: the free jazz of saxophonist Jemeel Moondoc in Long Sorrow (2005) rubs shoulders with Schönberg’s music in The Present Moment (2014), the famous punk song Should I stay or should I go? in The Clash (2010) or Stravinsky’s Elegy in If and Only If (2018). In each of his works, the spectator’s subjective and sensory experience resonates with a collective, social and historical dimension. 

This attention to experience is reflected in the specific way that Anri Sala considers his exhibitions. Each one has a unique configuration and is designed as a “continuum of presences and flows”, a “site of conjunctions and interrelations” in which the spectator plays an active role. “The idea,” the artist explains, “is not to chart a course or offer a possible scenario, but to synchronise the works together as if it were a musical score.” 

Biographical note 

Anri Sala was born in 1974 in Tirana, Albania. He lives and works in Berlin. His work has been the subject of solo exhibitions in museums including the Museo Tamayo in Mexico (2017), the New Museum in New York (2016), the Haus der Kunst in Munich (2014), the Centre Pompidou in Paris (2012), the Serpentine Gallery in London (2011), the Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami (2008) and the Fondazione Nicola Trussardi in Milan (2005). In 2013, he represented France at the 55th Venice Biennale. He has also participated in a number of group exhibitions and biennials, such as the 12th Havana Biennial (2015), the 11th Sharjah Biennial (2013), the 9th Gwangju Biennial (2012), Documenta 13 (2012), the 29th São Paulo Biennial (2010), the 2nd Moscow Biennial of Contemporary Art (2007) and the 4th Berlin Biennial (2006). He has received the Vincent Award (2014), the 10th Benesse Prize (2013), the Absolut Art Award (2011) and the Young Artist Prize of the Venice Biennale (2001).

Suzanne Cotter, Christophe Gallois, assisted by Sarah Beaumont