WRITER: LAUREL SNYDER
CONTACT: PETER ALEXANDER
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0072; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Aug. 27, 1999
'Art is Life/Life is Art: The Graphic Work of Dieter
Roth' opens Sept. 11 at UI Museum of Art
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The University of Iowa Museum of Art
will exhibit "Art is Life/ Life is Art: The Graphic Work of Dieter Roth,"
a selection of artists' books, prints, and drawings, Sept. 11 through Nov.
The Museum of Art will celebrate the opening of "Art is
Life/Life is Art" and other fall exhibitions with a reception, noon to 5 p.m.
Sunday, Sept. 12 in the museum.
Two lectures will be presented in connection with
the exhibition. As part of the museum's opening reception Sept. 12, Buzz Spector,
a visiting artist in the printmaking area of the UI School of Art and Art
History, will offer a gallery tour of the exhibition and speak on "The Body
and the Archive" at 1 p.m. Kathleen Edwards, curator of the exhibition and
the Museum of Art curator of prints and drawings, will speak on Roth for one
of the museum's weekly Perspectives programs at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept.
Born in Hannover, Germany in 1930, Roth was a trained
draftsman and an expert printmaker. However, his reclusive lifestyle and his
resistance to tradition kept him largely outside of mainstream artistic activity.
His use of vulgar language and playful sexuality, compounded by the use of
unstable and biodegradable materials, made much of his art impossible to institutionalize
during his lifetime.
Despite these factors, Roth is regarded by many to
be one of the century's most influential artists. Beginning with experimentation
in graphic design and visual poetry, Roth developed the book as an optical
geometric construction, and later explored historical notions of the archive
and the diary. Influenced by the 20th-century artist movements of constructivism,
surrealism, pop art, and abstract expressionism, and also by philosophy and
literature, Roth is recognized as the first artist to consider the book within
a process uniting form and content fully.
Since his death in 1998, Roth has received much international
attention for his work. Largely inaccessible during the life of the reclusive
artist, the works in the current exhibition have been brought together through
the loan of many pieces from the collection of Dr. Ira G. Wool and from UI
Libraries. It is the first museum exhibition of the artist's work organized
in the United States since 1984.
An exhibition catalog containing essays by Kathleen
Edwards and by Buzz Spector may be purchased at the museum.
Spector's lecture Sept. 12 at the Museum of Art is
sponsored by the UI Center for the Book.
The UI Museum of Art, located on North Riverside Drive
in Iowa City, is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and noon
to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is free. Public metered parking is available in
UI parking lots across from the museum on Riverside Drive and just north of
For information on the UI Museum of Art, visit http://www.uiowa.edu/~artmus
on the World Wide Web. Information is available on other UI arts events at