Michael Müller
10/14/2022–2/19/2023

The Given Day.
Castor & Polydeuces

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The German-British artist Michael Anthony Müller (born 1970) takes visitors with an expansive installation, drawings, paintings, and a sculpture into the mythological world of Ancient Greece. By means of painting, but while also going beyond its boundaries, Müller presents a multi-faceted artistic reflection on the meaning of time, mortality, and love that endures outside time. In the process, he weighs up the potential of abstraction and asks the crucial question: Can an abstract artwork tell a story?

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Exhibition

About the exhibition

The piece “The Given Day” (2021–2022), based on the Ancient Greek myth of the Dioscuri, the twins Castor and Polydeuces, form the heart of the exhibition. In battle, the inseparable brothers are divided by the death of Castor, a mortal. Zeus grants the two brothers a shared life – a life between the worlds. Henceforth the brothers alternate between a day spent in Hades, the realm of the dead, and a day on Olympus amongst the gods. A prologue consisting of Müller’s drawings and a sculpture interacts with works on paper from the Städel Museum collection to familiarize visitors with the myth. With his site-specific piece “The Given Day”, Müller also has different concepts of time enter into dialogue: Firstly, there is the physical notion of time, which allows for a subdivision of time segments into objective units; secondly, there is human-existential time, which evades such a strict subdivision. The work measures a total of 6 × 65 metres and is made up of 24 large-format canvases. They symbolize the 24 hours of the day, and Müller painted each exclusively at the hour of the day for which the respective canvas stands. The exhibition culminates in the garden halls, where Müller presents further groups of works and quite literally accompanies the visitors into the “underworld”.

Curator: Svenja Grosser (Deputy Director, Collection of Contemporary Art, Städel Museum)

Photo: Städel Museum – Norbert Miguletz

Gallery

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    Michael Müller, The Given Day (detail), 2021–2022

    Michael Müller (*1970)

    The Given Day (detail), 2021–2022
    Acrylic, gesso and lacquer on printed Belgian linen
    © Studio Michael Müller

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    Michael Müller: The Given Day. Castor & Polydeuces

    Michael Müller

    The Given Day. Kastor & Polydeuces
    Courtesy Studio Michael Müller, Berlin
    © Photo art/beats, Robert Schittko

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    Michael Müller, The Given Day (detail), 2021–2022

    Michael Müller (*1970)

    The Given Day (detail), 2021–2022
    Acrylic, gesso and lacquer on printed Belgian linen
    © Studio Michael Müller

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    Michael Müller, The Given Day (detail), 2021–2022

    Michael Müller (*1970)

    The Given Day (detail), 2021–2022
    Acrylic, gesso and lacquer on printed Belgian linen
    © Studio Michael Müller

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    Portrait Michael Müller

    Portrait Michael Müller

    Courtesy Studio Michael Müller, Berlin
    © Photo art/beats, Robert Schittko

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    Michael Müller, The Given Day (detail), 2021–2022

    Michael Müller (*1970)

    The Given Day (detail), 2021–2022
    Acrylic, gesso and lacquer on printed Belgian linen
    © Studio Michael Müller

Programme

Programme

Individually bookable offers

Tours are available in English, German, French, Italian, Russian, Dutch and Japanese. Please contact us to arrange your group visit even if you do not wish to book a guided tour.

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Film

Film

Exhibition views

Exhibition views

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    Exhibition view
    Photo: Städel Museum - Norbert Miguletz

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    Exhibition view
    Photo: Städel Museum - Norbert Miguletz

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    Exhibition view
    Photo: Städel Museum - Norbert Miguletz

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