Profile: Hans Haacke
Affiliated Movements: Conceptual Art. , Pop Art
* The placement of other artists in the same category is purely for didactic purposes - any number alternate criteria could result in a different choice. This list is chosen by suggesting other artists, mostly working at the same point in time and whose work might evoke similar questions in the viewer.
Hans Haacke, Condensation Wall,1967.
Hans Haacke - What's the Big Deal?
Condensation Cube, begun 1965, completed 2008; plexiglass and water; Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden
One of his best-known works, Shapolsky et al. Manhattan Real Estate Holdings, A Real Time Social System, as of May 1, 1971 exposed the questionable transactions of Harry Shapolsky's real-estate business between 1951 and 1971. Haacke's 1971 one-artist show at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, which was to include this work and which also made an issue of the business and personal connections of the museum's trustees, was cancelled by the museum's director six weeks before the opening. An exhibition at the Wallraf-Richartz museum was also cancelled due to the inclusion by Haacke of the PROJEKT '74 celebration in Cologne, a history of the ownership of a painting in the collection in which the Third Reich activities of its donor were revealed.(Provenance issue)
Hans Haacke - Biography
Photograph of MoMA Poll in the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA).
In 1970, Haacke created an installation commissioned for the MoMA in New York entitled MoMA Poll. The work was a query that asked "Would the fact that Governor Rockefeller has not denounced President Nixon's Indochina Policy be a reason for you not voting for him in November?" with two ballot boxes (made of plexi-glass). The end result at the end of the exhibition was approximately twice as many Yes ballots as No ballots. The installation is an early example of Institutional Critique and criticized a board trustee and the institution (MoMA).
In 1978 Haacke had a solo exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in Oxford for which he created the work "A Breed Apart", which made explicit criticism of the state owned British Leyland exporting vehicles for police and military use to apartheid South Africa. In 1979 he had a solo exhibition at The Renaissance Society, featuring highly political paintings which reproduced and altered print ads for Mobil, Allied Chemical, and Tiffany & Co. In the later 1980s Haacke moved towards using paintings and larger scale sculptural installation. In 1988 he was given an exhibition at the Tate Gallery in London for which he did a portrait of Margaret Thatcher featuring cameos of Maurice and Charles Saatchi.
Haacke's 1990 controversial painting Cowboy with Cigarette turned Picasso's Man with a Hat (1912-13) into a cigarette advertisement. The work was a reaction to the Phillip Morris company's sponsorship of a 1989-90 exhibition about Cubism at the Museum of Modern Art. Hans Haacke published a book about the ideas and processes behind his and other conceptual art called Framing and Being Framed.