Alwin Lay, “untitled”, 2019, detail from 2 of 7 images produced for the exhibition
In November 1969, the American art critic Lucy R. Lippard organized a small exhibition with serial photo-text works in the gallery of the School of Visual Arts in New York, titled “Groups.” About twenty-five artists followed a specific set of instructions she provided for the show (reproduced below). Among the participants were Robert Barry, Jonathan Borofsky, Douglas Huebler, Alex Katz, Sylvia Mangold, N.E. Thing Co., Adrian Piper and Lawrence Weiner. A few months later, in March 1970, Lippard selected half of the works for an eponymous “magazine exhibition” in the British journal Studio International. It was the first project of its kind in a mainstream art magazine. Yet because of layout issues, Lippard’s printed exhibition—unlike its imminent successor, Seth Siegelaub’s “July, August 1970”—was soon forgotten.
To celebrate “Groups” and to take it as a point of departure for reflection on how the conditions of production and display have changed over the last sixty years, I asked a group of contemporary artists to follow Lippard’s instructions again in 2019. Their new responses form the exhibition “Re: Groups” and were first on view in the Forum section of Camera Austria International magazine (no. 147, pp. 53–63). A second version of the same exhibition, featuring the artists’ prints, were presented at the University of Applied Arts (seminar room 25, ground floor), during the Vienna Art Book Fair.
Heartfelt thanks to Lucy Lippard for kindly granting permission to use her concept again, as well as to all of the artists and the numerous people who helped to make this exhibition possible.