Pontus Kyander, Andrew Wilson, Mathieu Copeland, Leanne Dmyterko, Manuel Olveira. Interview by Dobrila Denegri, Hans Ulrich Obrist, Oslo, 2016
Hardcover, 220 pp., 84 color illustrations, 51 black and white. 8.75 x 11.75
Act or Perish! accompanies the first extensive overview of Auto-Destructive art pioneer Gustav Metzger (born 1926), organized in 2015–16 at the Centre of Contemporary Art in Torun and Kunsthall Oslo and Stiftelsen Kunstnernes Hus in Oslo. The exhibition catalog provides readers with a rich array of theoretical contributions, including a conversation between Dobrila Denegri and Yoko Ono, Ivor Davies, Hermann Nitsch and Jon Hendricks, as well as Metzger’s own writings. Essayists Pontus Kyander, Andrew Wilson, Mathieu Copeland, Dobrila Denegri, Leanne Dmyterko, Hans Ulrich Obrist and Manuel Olveira take up different aspects of Metzger’s work, from the artist’s early political activism to his experimentation with painting and his drafting of the manifestos for Auto-Destructive Art, providing an invaluable and much-awaited document of a pioneer of postwar art.
Raised as a child in Nazi Germany, Gustav Metzger (born 10 April 1926) is an activist political artist who founded the auto-destructive art movement and called for an Art Strike in the late 1970s to protest art's engagement with capitalism.