Louise Bourgeois: A Legacy Unveiled at Aberdeen Art Gallery

This new exhibition is a unique chance for visitors of all ages to delve into the complex and compelling world of Louise Bourgeois’ art.

Louise Bourgeois: A Legacy Unveiled at Aberdeen Art Gallery

This weekend, Aberdeen Art Gallery launched its 2024 show schedule. First up is the only Scottish showing of Artists Rooms: Louise Bourgeois. This collection brings together the mesmerising works of the famed French-American artist. Louise Bourgeois’ profound creations have captivated the art world. Bourgeois’s career journeyed through some of the experimental art movements of the 20th century. Unlike many others, though, she did this while keeping her own distinct personal voice.

The exhibition at Aberdeen Art Gallery draws on Bourgeois’s extensive body of work within Artist Rooms. It’s a unique chance for visitors to delve into the complex world of Louise Bourgeois. She’s an artist whose work challenges, inspires, and transcends the boundaries of time and place.

Bourgeois’s art, known for its deep inventiveness, spans a vast range of forms. These include monumental installations, figurative sculptures, fabric collages, and drawings. This exhibition, in particular, highlights her work from the last two decades of her life. It was a time of remarkable productivity and creativity for the artist. Most iconic among her creations are her spider sculptures. These symbolise motherhood and protection, with “Spider 1994” featured prominently in the exhibition. This is a very large artwork, over three meters high. It shows how Bourgeois could mix greatness with her own personal stories.


The focus of the exhibit is on Bourgeois’s exploration of identity, gender, childhood, family, and memory during her later years. She uses textiles and garments charged with personal history. Her works from this period evoke a poignant sense of intimacy and mortality. Her art, personal yet universal, provocative yet vulnerable, continues to resonate with audiences. It demonstrates the enduring power of Bourgeois’s vision.

“Bourgeois remains a major influence on artists today. The themes that emerge in her work are to do with life, living, loving, and suffering. Profoundly human emotions that touch us all.”

Ceri Lewis from Artist Rooms Tate and National Galleries of Scotland

Artist Rooms introduces the works of significant artists like Bourgeois to wider audiences. They offer access to world-class art free of charge. This initiative is a collaboration between Tate and the National Galleries of Scotland. It highlights the importance of making international art accessible to local communities. It provides a rare opportunity to engage with the works of an influential artist. But it also serves as an educational resource, especially for young people. The idea is to foster early appreciation and understanding of international art.

More than a decade after her death, Bourgeois’s work remains a powerful conduit for exploring the depths of human experience. It makes this exhibition a must-see event promising to leave a lasting impact.

Janus Fleuri