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There is movement in the art scene of the capital and its surroundings. With the internationally renowned artist and most important representative of kinetic sculpture George Rickey (1907 - 2002), the Skulpturenpark des Schlossguts Schwante brings together several premieres: after three successful group exhibitions, it is the first solo show of an artist for the Skulpturenpark, at the same time the first comprehensive presentation of Rickey's outdoor sculptures in and around Berlin and the first exhibition of his outdoor sculptures in Europe since 1982.



Dr. Loretta Würtenberger and Daniel Tümpel are very pleased about the multiple premiere associated with the solo exhibition: "The sculpture park of Schlossgut Schwante offers Rickey's works the stage they deserve. Poetic and picturesque at the same time, his kinetic sculptures enter into a symbiotic play with nature. We could not think of an artist who has more precisely captured the philosophy of this landscape park with his art than George Rickey. This has been demonstrated by the response to his previously exhibited work 'Three Squares Diagonal' in the first three annual exhibitions. It is always a joy to observe how long visitors pause in front of the three seemingly weightless aluminum squares and lose themselves in the moment. This engagement and recollection is what we're all about."


The last time a comparable variety of Rickey's outdoor sculptures were presented was at Yorkshire Sculpture Park in 1982. Eight large-scale outdoor sculptures are assembled at Schlossgut Schwante. The solo show features stainless steel kinetic sculptures that are set in motion by wind and gravity and interact with the light of the landscape and  the natural elements. The annual program is complemented with regular guided tours, family and artist workshops, as well as concerts and readings. Surrounding this first solo show of landscape gardening in Schwante are works from the permanent collection, including Jeewi Lee, Dan Graham, Carsten Nicolai, Susan Philips, Ulrich Rückriem, and Anne Seubert.


George Rickey has a special relationship with the city of Berlin: Rickey ran a studio in Berlin for over 25 years and celebrated his 85th birthday in 1993 together with the German and international art scene.with the German and international art scene at the Berlinische Galerie. Now his work is receiving a long overdue tribute in the Berlin area. "What awaits the artist as a motif are not the trees, not the flowers, not the landscape, but the swaying of the branches and the trembling of the trunks, the rising or receding of the clouds, the rising and setting, the waxing and waning of the heavenly bodies." - George Rickey




The exhibition at Skulpturenpark Schlossgut Schwante offers an opportunity to experience George Rickey's dynamic works in a natural context. The sculptures are spread across the ten-acre site, which is surrounded by a historic 18th-century manor house. Visitors:inside can view the sculptures from different perspectives and observe their changes throughout the day and seasons. The contemplative interplay between art and nature is the central concern of the Schlossgut Schwante Sculpture Park, founded in 2020, which provides a suitable setting for Rickey's work. Without the play, without the impetus, without the swaying, the drifting and rotating, without the motion sequences of nature, George Rickey's - as he himself called his works - "useless machines" would literally be that: useless. But through the drive of nature, through blowing winds and undulating water in Schwante, the works come to life.




George Rickey is considered one of the pioneers of kinetic art. He studied art history and painting at Oxford University and was influenced by Constructivists such as Naum Gabo and Antoine Pevsner. After World War II, he began creating abstract sculptures made of metal that moved through natural forces. His works are characterized by a geometric simplicity and a technical precision that contrast strongly with the random and playful movement of his forms. The U.S. artist's work is represented in a variety of internationally renowned and German collections, including MoMA New York, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, National Gallery of Art, and the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington, D.C.
Additional information
The exhibition is open from June 3 to October 15, 2023. Admission costs 12 euros for adults. On June 4, the opening party will be celebrated together with all guests: with live music, restaurant and free admission. The sculpture park Schlossgut Schwante is a lively place for art, nature and enjoyment.