press release

L'Invitation au voyage

30 April - 27 June, 2021

The long history of momentarily escaping the constraints of a fraught reality by travelling to distant lands in your imagination, through fantasy or dreams, is the subject of L'Invitation au voyage, an exhibition of painting that spans multiple generations and artistic approaches, opening at Esther Schipper on the occasion of Gallery Weekend Berlin.

Beginning with works from the historical avant-garde and continuing into contemporary practices, artists include Sarah Buckner, Cui Jie, Cordula Ditz, Almut Heise, Hannah Höch, Leiko Ikemura, Tala Madani, Isa Melsheimer, Sojourner Truth Parsons, Paula Rego, Shahzia Sikander, Yi-Ting Tsai, and Yeesookyung.

At a time when travel in real life has become fraught and the ease, even recklessness, with which we took this liberty for granted has come into question, this exhibition—its title, L’Invitation au voyage is taken from a poem from Charles Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs du Mal—invokes the freedom of such imaginary travels to non-existing places.

In the last year, dream and fantasy have taken on a renewed importance as liberation from the strains of the persistent uncertainty of everyday life. With their representation of dreamlike or fantastic figures, scenarios, or landscapes, L'Invitation au voyage brings together works that tear at the boundaries of reality, giving us a glimpse of worlds existing at the threshold of the real.