Brandhorst Flag Commission: Philipp Gufleruntil
As part of the “Brandhorst Flag Commission,” four flags by Philipp Gufler will be exhibited in front of the museum. In “Urning” the artist deals with the visibility of queer history and memory culture and connects it with current debates.
Dr. Monika Bayer-Wermuth
Art in Public Space
With “Flag Commission,” Museum Brandhorst goes beyond the boundaries of the exhibition space and presents specially commissioned artworks in the neighborhood of the Maxvorstadt district. Normally, the flags on the corner of Türkenstraße and Theresienstraße advertise the museum’s current exhibitions. But for “Flag Commission,” the artists use them as outdoor areas to create interventions in the public space.
Philipp Gufler: Urning
Starting in September 2023, Amsterdam and Munich-based artist Philipp Gufler will occupy the space with a new work. With his signature approach, he recontextualizes queer history in his often textile-based works. Rather than depicting complex overlays as in his silkscreen prints on fabrics and mirrors, for “Urning” he uses the visual impact of the medium of the flag.
In his flags, Gufler places the lawyer Karl Heinrich Ulrichs at the center of his work, using Pop Art aesthetics. Ulrichs coined the term “Urning,” which, in reference to the Greek god Uranos, was the first to formulate queer identity through a positive self-designation. At the German Jurists’ Forum, held at the Odeon in Munich on August 29, 1867, he demanded impunity for same-sex love. Although the term “Urning” did not catch on, Ulrichs has become a central source of inspiration for queer theory. Gufler links this historical importance to a significant poster campaign by the initiative Act Up Munich, which gained notoriety in 1995 for its protest against local Bavarian politicians. He updates the AIDS awareness campaign and creates a link between the historical treatment of queer identity and its relevance to current debates.