News — 1 Apr 2019
The Stedelijk Museum has acquired the painting Infe©ted Mondrian #2 (1994) by the artists’ collective General Idea. The work is part of the last, internationally renowned series Imagevirus, and a direct copy of a painting by Piet Mondriaan, but is “contaminated” with a green patch. By “infecting” modernist icons with the so-called GI virus, the artists Jorge Zontal, Felix Partz and AA Bronson of General Idea wanted to openly address the AIDS crisis, a central theme in their work. Infe©ted Mondrian #2 is on view in STEDELIJK BASE, the permanent installation of the collection. The purchase was made with the generous support of the Mondriaan Fund and the Stedelijk Museum Foundation.
Beatrice von Bormann: “The purchase of Infe©ted Mondrian #2 fills an important gap in the collection of works by General Idea that the Stedelijk Museum already owns. It is also a critical addition to the large collection of abstract art in the field of De Stijl, and Piet Mondrian in particular.”
Since the first museum solo of General Idea was held at the Stedelijk, the museum has developed a close relationship with the collective and later with artist AA Bronson. The Stedelijk Museum began collecting the multi-disciplinary work of General Idea in 1980, and has been looking to expand this collection for some years. The first museum exhibition took place in the Stedelijk Museum in 1979, immediately after the group was founded by Jorge Zontal, Felix Partz and AA Bronson. General Idea became one of the leading collectives of the 1980s and attracted considerable international attention with their provocative ideas about identity, the role of the mass media and AIDS activism. When the AIDS epidemic broke out in the 1980s, the group embraced it as their main focus. In 1994, when Zontal and Partz died prematurely from AIDS-related complications, General Idea ceased to exist. The collective continues to influence younger generations, and remains a source of inspiration for other artists.
In 2018, AA Bronson donated the complete archive of General Idea, the General Idea Collection, to the Stedelijk Museum. In the same year, the Stedelijk also bought the iconic AIDS Wallpaper (1988) together with Centraal Museum Utrecht and with the help of the Rembrandt Association, thanks in part to its Titus Fund.
Infe©ted Mondrian #2 (1994) by General Idea was acquired with the generous support of the Mondriaan Fund and the International Collector Circle and Curator Circle of the Stedelijk Museum Foundation.