Solar Breath

Knowing which way the wind blows

28 September 2023 – 10 February 2024

Dennis Oppenheim - Whirlpool - Eye of the Storm

Dennis Oppenheim, Whirlpool – Eye of the Storm, 1978, © Dennis Oppenheim Estate


Solar Breath – Wissen woher der Wind weht!
© München TV, Markus Stampfl, 27. September 2023

(Video: 30.34 MB)


Rémy Bender, Hicham Berrada, Bigert & Bergström, Sara Bouchard, Olaf Breuning, Daniel Buren, Vadim Fishkin, Jochen Gerz, Sigurður Guðmundsson, Leiko Ikemura, Romuald Karmakar, Katrin Agnes Klar, Olaf Metzel, Nanne Meyer, Dennis Oppenheim, Marjetica Potrč and Ooze, Marco Schuler, Michael Snow, Paul Valentin


Wind moves, touches, changes. Wind drives us, slows us down, ranges from a gentle breeze to a furious storm. Not only headwind and tailwind as synonyms for easy or difficult progress, but also “a whirlwind that sweeps through the room” describe particularly dynamic situations in linguistic usage. Wind has always dominated seafaring and trade, keeps mills running and is a key to renewable energy. It is therefore quite astonishing that its enormous influence on our lives, on weather, climate and global warming has so far played only a subordinate role in public perception and in climate research.

The exhibition title “Solar Breath” is borrowed from a video work by the Canadian artist Michael Snow, which reflects time, space, light and air movements with the poetic choreography of a curtain dancing in the wind. The “breath of the sun”, its energy acting on the earth, is the motor of planetary circulation, which is responsible for the movements of large-scale air masses and their distribution on earth. The sun's radiation causes heated air masses to rise near the equator and to settle again towards the cooler polar regions. The Coriolis force directs these flowing phenomena, influencing, for example, the directions of rotation of the wind fields around high and low pressure areas or the formation of trade winds and jet streams. If individual elements within these global wind systems change, this can lead to local effects such as heavy rainfall, drought or heat waves.

The exhibition fans out the complex interplay of the winds in an airy, sensual synopsis of contemporary artistic positions. They tell of man's ancient dream of controlling the weather, give shape to meteorological aspects, make mountain winds whisper or fans change the shape of the artwork. Fascinated by the volatility of the winds and their neither visible nor tangible reality, they show the ambivalence of this natural phenomenon – between potential and threat, between lightness and apocalyptic power.

Scientific Program


Accompanying the exhibition is a catalogue (german/english), EUR 10,00
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