(left) Portrait of John C. Welchman (right) Portrait of Hernan Diaz Alonso. Photo: Michal Czerwonka

In Conversation: John C. Welchman & Hernan Diaz Alonso on Stefan Brüggemann

  • 16 Dec 2023, 2.30 pm

On the occasion of the exhibition ‘Stefan Brüggemann. White Noise,’ please join us for a presentation and conversation exploring the rich historical contexts for Brüggemann’s work, and its connections to new technologies and constructs of space, with writer John C. Welchman and director and CEO of SCI-Arc Hernan Diaz Alonso.  

‘White Noise,’ the first Los Angeles solo exhibition by Mexican-German artist Stefan Brüggemann, debuts works created over the past two years. Together the paintings, installation and neon works address ways in which information and misinformation saturate our consciousness and shape our approach to the world in which we live today.  

This event is free; however, reservations are required. Click here to register.

About Stefan Brüggemann
Spanning—and sometimes combining—sculpture, video, painting, and drawing, Stefan Brüggemann’s work deploys text in conceptual installations rich with acerbic social critique and a post pop aesthetic. Born in Mexico City and working between Mexico, London and Ibiza, the artist’s oeuvre is characterized by an ironic conflation of Conceptualism and Minimalism. In this way, Brüggemann’s practice sits outside the canon of the conceptual artists practicing in the 1960s and 1970s, who sought dematerialisation and rejected the commercialisation of art. Instead his aesthetic is refined and luxurious, whilst maintaining a punk attitude. 

The philosophy of language is a crucial tenet in Brüggemann’s practice, in which text functions as a fluid medium, utilized for both form and meaning; his choice of words typically provocative, acerbic and topical. Brüggemann’s masterful wordplay and conceptual rigour coalesce to create a bold and pertinent body of work focusing on themes of appropriation and displacement. 

About John C. Welchman 
John C. Welchman is Distinguished Professor of Art History at the University of California, San Diego and Chair Emeritus of the Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts. His books on modern and contemporary art and visual culture include: Modernism Relocated: Towards a Cultural Studies of Visual Modernity (Allen & Unwin, 1995); Invisible Colours: A Visual History of Titles (Yale, 1997); Art After Appropriation: Essays on Art in the 1990s (Routledge, 2001); Guillaume Bijl (JRP|Ringier, 2016); Past Realization: Essays on Contemporary European Art (Sternberg, 2016) Catching Mayhem by its Tale, vol. 2, Paul McCarthy: Caribbean Pirates (Hauser & Wirth, 2019); Tala Madani: Shit Moms (Vienna Secession, 2019); After the Wagnerian Bouillabaisse (Sternberg, 2019); Ivan Morley (Kordansky, Los Angeles, 2020); Richard Jackson (Hauser & Wirth, 2020); the innovative monograph Royal Book Lodge (Berlin: Hatje Cantz, 2023); and Koen van der Broek: Out of Place (MER. B&L, 2024). Welchman is co-author of the Dada and Surrealist Word Image (MIT, 1987), Mike Kelley (Phaidon, 1999), Kwang-Young Chung (Rizzoli, 2014), and Joseph Kosuth’s The Second Investigation (1968-72) and Public Media (Sternberg, 2024). Orshi Drozdik: Adventure in Technos Dystopium (MER. B&L) and Stopgap Measures: Collected Writings on Mike Kelley (Hatje Cantz) are forthcoming in 2024. 

Welchman is editor of Rethinking Borders (Minnesota, 1996), Institutional Critique and After (JRP|Ringier, 2006), The Aesthetics of Risk (JRP|Ringier, 2008); Black Sphinx: On the Comedic in Modern Art (JRP|Ringier, 2010); and Sculpture and the Vitrine [Subject /Object: New Studies in Sculpture series, Henry Moore Institute] (Ashgate, 2013); and of collected writings by Mike Kelley: Foul Perfection: Essays and Criticism (MIT, 2003); Minor Histories (MIT, 2004); Mike Kelley: Interviews, Conversations, and Chit-Chat, 1988-2004 (JRP|Ringier, 2005). He has written for Artforum (where he had a column in the late 1980s and early 90s), Screen, the New York Times, International Herald Tribune, Los Angeles Times, the Economist; and contributed essays to catalogues and associated publications at Documenta, Louvre, Stedelijk Museum, Centre Pompidou, MoMA|PS1, Tate Modern and Tate Liverpool, Skulptur Projekte Münster, Reina Sophia, Metropolitan Museum of Art, The New Museum, Albertina, Vienna, Museum of Contemporary Art (LA), LA County Museum of Art, Sydney Biennial, Venice Biennale, Vienna Museum of Contemporary Art, Haus der Kunst (Munich), MUAC (Mexico City), Mostyn (Wales), Edinburgh Festival, and Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes de La Habana.

About Hernan Diaz Alonso 
Hernán Díaz Alonso assumed the role of SCI-Arc director beginning in the 2015 academic year. He has been a distinguished faculty member since 2001, serving in several leadership roles, including coordinator of the graduate thesis program from 2007–10, and graduate programs chair from 2010–15. He is widely credited with spearheading SCI-Arc’s transition to digital technologies, and he played a key role in shaping the school’s graduate curriculum over the last decade. 

In parallel to his role at SCI-Arc, Díaz Alonso is principal of the Los Angeles–based architecture office HDA-x (formerly Xefirotarch). His multidisciplinary practice is praised for its work at the intersection of design, animation, interactive environments, and radical architectural explorations. Over the course of his career as an architect and educator, Díaz Alonso has earned accolades for his leadership and innovation, as well as his ability to build partnerships among varied constituencies. In 2005 he was the winner of MoMA PS1’s Young Architects Program (YAP) competition, and in 2012 he received the Educator of the Year award from the American Institute of Architects (AIA). He won the 2013 AR+D Award for Emerging Architecture and a 2013 Progressive Architecture Award for his design of the Thyssen-Bornemisza Pavilion/Museum in Patagonia, Argentina. 
Díaz Alonso’s architectural designs have been featured in exhibitions at the Venice Architecture Biennale, the London Architecture Biennale, and ArchiLab in Orleans, France, as well as included in exhibitions at such leading museums as the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA); the Art Institute of Chicago; and MAK Centre, Vienna. The work has been widely published in magazines, journals, and books, including the Excessive monograph of Xefirotarch. The office is currently working on a new monograph to be published by Thames and Hudson. Díaz Alonso’s work is in the permanent collections of the FRAC Centre, Orleans, France; SFMOMA; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Thyssen-Bornemisza, the MAK Museum, Vienna; and the Art Institute of Chicago. 
A gifted educator, Díaz Alonso has been acknowledged throughout the years with prestigious appointments; these include Yale University’s Louis I. Kahn Visiting Assistant Professorship of Architectural Design (2010), Visiting Design Studio Faculty at the GSAPP at Columbia University (2004–10), an ongoing appointment as architectural design professor in the Urban Strategies Postgraduate Program at the University of Applied Arts Vienna, and as a Distinguished Faculty Member at SCI-Arc. In spring 2015 he served as Yale University’s Eero Saarinen Professor of Architectural Design. Díaz Alonso was named by DesignIntelligence as one of their 25 Most Admired Educators for 2018-2019 and won the American Academy of Arts and Letters Architecture Award in 2019. 

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