Works from the Ursula Hauser Collection

Unconscious Landscape

May 25 - September 8, 2019


Hauser & Wirth Somerset is proud to present ‘Unconscious Landscape. Works from the Ursula Hauser Collection’, an exhibition focused entirely on female artists. Over the course of four decades Ursula Hauser has assembled a deeply personal collection of works that brings together a remarkable overview of late 20th century modern masters in dialogue with contemporary artists. The exhibition, which is curated by Ursula Hauser’s daughter Manuela Wirth, together with Laura Bechter, Curator of the Ursula Hauser Collection, spans all five galleries in Somerset, presenting 65 works by female artists and artists’ estates including Louise Bourgeois, Heidi Bucher, Sonia Gomes, Eva Hesse, Sheila Hicks, Maria Lassnig, Lee Lozano, Meret Oppenheim, Carol Rama, Sylvia Sleigh and Alina Szapocznikow. This presentation follows a series of Hauser & Wirth exhibitions focused on important private collections including the Onnasch Collection, The Panza Collection and the Perlstein Collection.

View more

Installation views


Opening reception: ‘Unconscious Landscape. Works from the Ursula Hauser Collection’

Please join us for the opening reception of ‘Unconscious Landscape. Works from the Ursula Hauser Collection’. Over the course of four decades Ursula Hauser has assembled a deeply personal collection of works that brings together a remarkable overview of late 20th century modern masters in dialogue with contemporary artists. The collection is intrinsically linked to her own personal trajectory and often she has unconsciously sought out female artists that she feels an affinity with, compiling in-depth bodies of work that span their careers. The exhibition, which is co-curated by Ursula Hauser’s daughter Manuela Wirth, spans all five galleries in Somerset, presenting 65 works by female artists and artists’ estates. This is a free event, no booking necessary.

Curating Private Art Collections: 2019 International Curatorial Symposium

‘Curating Private Art Collections’ is a one-day symposium that invites five curators overseeing international private collections to Hauser & Wirth Somerset on occasion of the exhibition ‘Unconscious Landscape. Works from the Ursula Hauser Collection’. The symposium will be a forum for engagement, discussion and reflection - focusing on the topic of private collecting in today’s cultural landscape and what it means for the future. Throughout the day, each of the curators will present for 10 minutes, followed by 20 minutes of discussion with the full panel. This will be followed by a full panel discussion, bringing in feedback and questions from the audience. The event includes refreshments and lunch served in Roth Bar & Grill. Our speakers include: Caroline Bourgeois – Principle Curator, The Pinault Collection, Venice, Italy, Wendy Chang – Director, The Rennie Collection, Vancouver, Canada Jenny Moore – Director, The Chinati Foundation, Marfa, Texas Skarlet Smatana – Director, George Economou Collection, Athens, Greece Jiyoon Lee – Founding Director, SUUM, Seoul, Korea Louisa Buck (Chair) – Art critic and journalist Read the speakers full biographies here. ‘Curating Private Art Collections’ is the culmination of our third International Curatorial Residency, which brings together influential curators from around the world to spend five days immersed in the ethos and programming of Hauser & Wirth Somerset. During the residency, the curators – each bringing their own personal experiences and knowledge – will engage with artists, gallery staff and members of the local community, inspiring their creative discourse.   Programme 10 am Arrival, registration, coffee and viewing of current exhibition 11 am Welcome and introductions 11.05 am Presentations and discussions by curators 12.45 pm Lunch at Roth Bar & Grill 2 pm Presentations and discussions by curators continued 3 pm Open Q&A with delegates 4 pm Symposium ends, refreshments and opportunity to network. Farewell and independent return travel   Ticket price includes refreshments and two course lunch at Roth Bar & Grill. Purchased after 1 June 2019 – £100 per person Student / concession – £50 per person For enquiries please contact Dea Vanagan:   Please click here for travel information, including shuttle departure times to train station. Previous editions of our International Curatorial Symposium include: ‘Exploring the Third Dimension’ and ‘Adventurous Curators – International Perspectives’.

Bristol Old Vic Youth Theatre Summer School

Partnering with Bristol Old Vic Theatre, Hauser & Wirth Somerset is delighted to host the hugely successful Bristol Old Vic Youth Theatre Summer School again this August. This is an incredible opportunity for young people interested in drama and performing arts to work with professional directors to create an original piece of theatre. In collaboration with the team at Bristol Old Vic Theatre, this year’s course participants will be asked to devise a new play told through movement, music and theatre. They will take 'Unconscious Landscape. Works from the Ursula Hauser Collection' as their starting point. The Summer School will run on weekdays from 12 until 22 August 2019, 10 am – 5 pm daily, and culminates in a public performance on Thursday 22 August 2019, set within the grounds of Hauser & Wirth Somerset. It is available to young people aged 11 – 16 years. This is a subsidised event and tickets are £150 for the full course. We ask that all participants to be delivered to the gallery and picked up by a responsible adult, please inform us if you have given permission for your child to travel to and from the gallery on their own. Children should bring a packed lunch, snacks and drinks as necessary. For further enquiries please contact Director: Maisie Newman Maisie is a Bristol based director, choreographer, practitioner and artist. She is the Interim Young Company Director at the Bristol Old Vic and creates visually striking, innovative, devised collaborative work which drives to push boundaries in performance. Maisie has been a core creative member of several young company shows, most recently, mentor /director for Young Ferment (The Western Studio). She is co-director and founder of Fen, a member of Propolis Theatre and an associate director for Twisted Theatre. Maisie was recently the associate director and choreographer for young company production Make More Noise (Bristol Old Vic) and was also the associate artist for Gecko Theatre’s The Wedding for Bristol Old Vic. She is currently undertaking a postgraduate MFA in Fine Art at the Ruskin School of Art. – Watch previous final performance events at the Bristol Old Vic Youth Theatre Summer School: ‘Cara (KA-ra)’ (2018) and ‘We Are Strangers’ (2017).

An Alternative History of Art: Women Through the Ages 1550 – 1945 by Katy Hessel

We are delighted to welcome Katy Hessel, curator, writer and founder of @thegreatwomenartists – the Instagram account with over 50k followers that celebrates female art daily. Hessel will take us through an alternative history of women in art through the ages from 1550 – 1945, providing insight into women’s contribution to the history of art. From Renaissance female artists to pre-war Surrealists, the talk will also cover non-Western artists and explore how women have been consistently breaking boundaries throughout the course of art history. Hessel has written extensively on the subject of women artists and has regularly led talks and lectures on the subject for The Courtauld, Cambridge University, Pallant House Gallery and Christie’s Education. She has presented films for the Barbican Centre and audio for Selfridges. In February 2019, she curated an area of Tate Modern for February Tate Lates, and has curated exhibitions at TJ Boulting, Mother London, and residencies at Palazzo Monti, Brescia. This event will take place at the Hauser & Wirth Recital Hall at King’s Bruton School. Parking is available at Blue 18 or Blue 21 on this map. The Hauser & Wirth Recital Hall is fully accessible and has disabled toilets and a lift to the balcony level. Tickets are £5 and include a drink on arrival.

Teachers’ Private View

Join us for the opportunity to view ‘Unconscious Landscape. Works from the Ursula Hauser Collection’ in a private view just for teachers and lecturers. There will also be the chance to collect the latest resources produced to support education visits to Hauser & Wirth Somerset. We hope the session will provide the opportunity to relax and enjoy the exhibitions and to share thoughts and ideas inspired by the artwork. Debbie Hillyerd, Director of Education will lead the tour and be available to discuss any visit requirements. 5 pm Welcome and glass of wine 5.30 pm Tour of exhibitions This is a free event, however it is only available to teaching staff. Booking is essential: please email or call +44 (0) 174 981 4060.

About the Artists

Born in Carinthia in Southern Austria in 1919, Maria Lassnig’s (1919 – 2014) work is based on the observation of the physical presence of the body and what she termed ‘body awareness’, or ‘Körpergefühl’ in German. She studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna in the midst of the Second World War. Then, in post-war Europe, she quickly moved away from the state-approved academic realism in which she was trained, looking to Austria’s own avant-garde past, such as the coloration of Oskar Kokoschka and Egon Schiele’s expressionist treatment of figuration.Her early years were marked by experiences with various ‘isms’, including artistic currents in surrealism and automatism from the late 1940s, followed by ‘art informel’ and post-cubism in the 1950s. After moving to Paris in 1960, an innovative figuration, expressive and painterly, was beginning to emerge. In the next few years, she developed narrative paintings with one or more figures, at times borrowing from technoid forms of science fiction set in absurdly caricatured scenes. Animal-like, monstrous self-portraits emerged alongside this group of works.

Born in 1936, Eva Hesse was one of the icons of American art in the 1960s, her work being a major influence on subsequent generations of artists. Comprehensive solo exhibitions in the past 30 years as well as a retrospective that toured from the San Francisco MoMA to the Museum Wiesbaden and finally to the Tate Modern in London, have highlighted the lasting interest that her oeuvre has generated. Hesse cultivated mistakes and surprises, precariousness and enigma, in an effort to make works that could transcend literal associations. The objects she produced, at once humble and enormously charismatic, came to play a central role in the transformation of contemporary art practice.

Born in Poland to a Jewish family in 1926, Alina Szapocznikow survived internment in concentration camps during the Holocaust as a teenager. Immediately after the war, she moved first to Prague and then to Paris, studying sculpture at the École des Beaux Arts. In 1951, suffering from tuberculosis, she was forced to return to Poland, where she expanded her practice. When the Polish government loosened controls over creative freedom following Stalin’s death in 1952, Szapocznikow moved into figurative abstraction and then a pioneering form of representation. By the 1960s, she was radically re-conceptualizing sculpture as an intimate record not only of her memory, but also of her own body.

Current Exhibitions