Sunday, June 30, 2013

Venice: Palazzo Fortuny – Tapies. The Eye of the Artist

Venice: Palazzo Fortuny – Tapies. The Eye of the Artist. Until November 24, at Palazzo  Fortuny “Tàpies. The eye of the Artist” exhibition.  Antoni Tàpies’ ‘eye’, his way of perceiving things, of looking around himself without limits of time and space, striving for answers about the universe, human nature, art, the mystery of life. A year after the death of the brilliant Catalan artist, a key exponent of international informal art, the Fondazione Musei Civici di Venezia and the Axel  and May Vervoordt Foundation pay tribute to him in Venice with a fascinating exhibition which aims to reveal the essence of the art produced by this major figure in 20th century art. It does so through Tapies ‘own gaze’ and hence through those cultural, artistic and emotional references he discerned in a plurality of expressions and in the most varied works of art forming part of his own private collection. 


Palazzo Fortuny:  Tàpies. The eye of the Artist. Realized in close collaboration with the Tàpies family, and laid out in the intimate and extremely appropriate setting of the home of Mariano Fortuny, himself a Spaniard and eclectic collector, the exhibition is curated by Daniela Ferretti, Natasha Hebert, Toni Tàpies and Axel Vervoordt with the scientific direction of Gabriella Belli, I the exhibition presents a selection of the artist’s key works, reinterpreted within the context of his private collection with the aim of gaining a sense of how Tàpies looked at the world,  his “gaze”, as artist and collector.
Above: Toni Tapies and Natasha  Herbert-Tapies


Antoni Tapies – Triptic dels Draps, 1992, mixed media and assemblage on wood.

Palazzo Fortuny:  Tàpies. The eye of the Artist. Alongside paintings by the Catalan artist, selected from an intuitive and emotional stance rather than a chronological there are a number of works by other artists of the 20th century, such as Joan Miró, Pablo Picasso, Kazuo Shiraga, Franz Kline, Jackson Pollock and Jannis Kounellis and a number of antique Oriental and tribal sculptures. All works from the private home of Tàpies and in many cases displayed to the public here for the first time.
Above: Alberto Giacometti, Homme, 1992, bronze with brown and gold patina.
Co-curators Daniela Ferretti and Axel Vervoordt.

Max Ernst – Foret Bleue, 1926, oil on cardboard laid on canvas.

Palazzo Fortuny:  Tàpies. The eye of the Artist.  A detail, Sadaharu Horio, Hommage to Tapies, Every Day Painting, A Matter of Course, 2013, installation with water mattress and recuperation material.

Painted live by Sadaharu Horio during the cocktail party for the exhibition.

Palazzo Fortuny:  Tàpies. The eye of the Artist.   Tapies constantly sought answers to the mysteries of existence and the common features of humanity, leaving aside genres, time and place; an intrinsic sense, a “universal power” in things from which to draw stimuli and possible lines of development. He explored ancient, modern or contemporary art of various genres and provenance, products of distant cultures such as Asian and African art, plus music, poetry, philosophy and science, used to “fertilize” contemporary art.
Above: Peace Ball made by Zen monks as a meditation exercise, Thailand, 20th century, sandstone.

Artist Anne-Karin Furunes and  Galleria Traghetto’s Elena Povellato.

Palazzo Fortuny:  Tàpies. The eye of the Artist.   Tàpies was influenced by philosophers, theologians and scientists, as well as by the greatest Old Masters and contemporary artists. The osmosis sparked off by these influences guided him through life, not only as artist, but also as collector. Embracing the unknown and exploring these paradoxes, Tàpies became a prolific and inspired artist.


Antoni LLena, Paisatge Sense Figures, 1991, manipulated paper.

Palazzo Fortuny:  Tàpies. The eye of the Artist.   Gunther Uecker, Trees and Nails, A Tribute to Tapies, 2008-2013, tree trunk, nails, cloth and ashes.

Valerie Bauchau and May Vervoordt

Palazzo Fortuny:  Tàpies. The eye of the Artist.   There are some important artists’ books with powerful lithographs, produced by Tàpies in collaboration with writers and poets. 
Above:  Roman Elegies by Joseph Brodsky, 1993, with nine lithographs by Antoni Tapies published by Erker-Verlag, St. Gallen.
 Photograph Fundació Antoni Tàpies, Barcellona

Tapies in Venice. Antonio Saura, Antoni Tàpies, Rodolphe Stadler  and Hisao Domoto in  Piazza San Marco.

Pin It

Venice 2013 - Arsenale: 55th International Art Biennale; National Pavilions – Holy See

Venice 2013 - Arsenale: 55th International Art Biennale; National Pavilions – Holy See. The Holy See participates this year for the first time at la Biennale di Venezia with a Pavilion inspired by the biblical narratives in the Book of Genesis. In Principio (In the Beginning) is the title chosen by the commissioner, Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, who has promoted and designed this absolute novelty in line with the Dicastery’s mission of promoting dialogue with contemporary culture.  The first eleven chapters of Genesis have been the incipit for reflection, coordinated by the curator, Prof. Antonio Paolucci, Director of the Vatican Museums. From here they proceeded to identify three nuclei, these are Creation, Un-Creation and Re-Creation, entrusted to the three international renowned artists who have constructed different routes that communicate between each other. As an opening, though, of the Pavilion on show a sort of “trilogy” of the works of Tano Festa, a Roman artist who long worked on Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel: the figure of Adam from the scene of Creation on the vault, the figure of the devil-serpent in the scene of the Original Sin, and the face of Adam, a sort of sign inviting the visitor to view the new works.

Holy See:  Studio Azzurro - The Creation.  The Creation has been given to Studio Azzurro. By a thoughtful use of new media, the famous Milanese group has risen to the challenge with an interactive installation that sees the human person at the center and stimulates the observer into mental and physical-sensorial movement within the surrounding space and individual and collective memory.


Holy See:  Studio Azzurro - The Creation.  Immaterial images come to life when touched by the hands of visitors, suggesting the animal kingdoms, through the gestures of the deaf and dumb, and the dominion of the spoken word.

Holy See:  Studio Azzurro - The Creation. Human beings are seen as “bringers of stories”, of personal narrations that come together through multimedia languages to form a great story of origins of the relation between man and time.  These are the voices, faces and gestures living in an enclosed condition under space and language, telling stories: male and female prisoners from Milano-Bollate retell their genealogies in an identity building process that moves backwards as far as memory stretches.


Holy See: Josef Koudelka – Un-creation. For Un-creation the Czech photographer Josef Koudelka was chosen: the power of his panoramic black and white photographs tells of the opposition of man to the world and to moral and natural laws, and material destruction deriving from the loss of ethical meaning.


Holy See:  Lawrence Carroll - Re-Creation. The hope present in the Re-Creation is expressed through the art of Lawrence Carroll: his ability to give new life to materials, turning them through processes of rethought and regeneration, opening up new possibilities of coexistence between apparently opposing dimensions, such as fragility and monumentality. The installation has the title Another Life and is composed of four great wall paintings and a floor piece. 

Lucy and Lawrence Carroll

Holy See:  Lawrence Carroll - Re-Creation.  Untitled (Freezing Painting), 2013, ice, oil wax, canvas on wood. A group of technicians was involved in realizing this piece, a freezing painting, unique in its kind for the characteristics and dimensions with respect to his previous works.  It cyclically will melt and refreeze modifying its aspects over the course of the day.
Above: Lucy cleans the condensation off the glass.

Seen in the Holy See Pavilion, Ben Jakober, Olimpia Fischetti, Gianfranco D’Amato, Yannick Vu and Massimo Moschini. 

Holy See:  Lawrence Carroll - Re-Creation.  

Seen in the Holy See Pavilion, Lucy Carroll, Angela and Rosita Missoni and Lawrence Carroll.

Seen in the Holy See Pavilion Raphael Castoriano promotes the Marina Abramovic Institute -  Run/Walk in Hudson, N.Y. on September 21.

Pin It

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Venice 2013 - Arsenale: 55th International Art Biennale; National Pavilions – Italy.

Venice 2013 - Arsenale: 55th International Art Biennale; National Pavilions – Italy.  The Italian Pavilion presents Vice Versa, an ideal journey through Italian art of today, an itinerary that tells of identities, history and landscapes, real and imaginary, exploring the complexity and layers that characterize the country's artistic vicissitudes. The Italian Pavilion, is curated by Bartolomeo Pietromarchi, who describes the exhibition as, "A portrait of recent art, read as an atlas of themes and attitudes in dialogue with the historical legacy and current affairs, with both a local and international dimension. A cross-dialogue of correspondences, derivations and differences between acclaimed maestros and artists of later generations. An unusual topography, that permits a reevaluation of some basic trajectories in recent Italian art, a vice versa 1 retracing of forgotten paths, the healing of cultural amnesia and gives new visibility to solitary authors." In a dialogue between artist and artist, room and room, the exhibition presents works that have mostly been created specifically for the occasion, twelve out of fourteen, and is proposed as a platform for reflection on the characteristics and contradictions of Italian culture, returning that vital complexity to our recent art which is created out of intuitions and contradictions in which the game of vice versa is one of its fundamental elements, thus asserting the status of originality and international importance that it deserves.
Italian Pavilion: Francesco Arena – Massa Sepolta, 2013. Francesco Arena begins with social and political episodes that have characterized the Italian news for the last decades. The fact, which are too often concealed or hidden, are reinterpreted through a sculptural approach using synthetic forms.
Seen inside the Italian Pavilion archistar Alessandro Mendini.
Italian Pavilion: Massimo Bartolini – Due, 2013. The artist's poetic is developed through different languages, giving life to works that are always closely connected to their settings. Through the use of diverse elements, Bartolini acts on the space, destroying the classic space-time coordinates and creating new and unexpected dimensions. The viewer, with his senses and his perceptions, plays a determining role in these works. He explores new points of view and acquires a different sensibility in front of objects and spaces, reinterpreting them through new forms where the individual embraces the entire world. 

Italian Pavilion: Francesca Grilli – Fe2, O3’, Ossido Ferrico, 2013.  Grilli’s experimentation explores the realm of sound, in its multiple expressive and perceptive implications. Opting to utilize the language of performance, her works move from private and personal elements into spectators' space of action, drawing them into an ambiguous and unsettling territory. In fact, two central aspects can be traced in her research: sound processing in all its forms and registers, and the spectators' space of action. If the first is a linguistic element with infinite possibilities of expressive modes, the second is a boundless space of physical and emotional involvement for the viewer.
Seen inside the Italian Pavilion Vittorio Sgarbi and artist Luca Vitone.
Italian Pavilion: Elisabetta Benassi - The Dry Salvages, 2013. Making references to cultural, political and artistic traditions of the Twentieth Century as well as to controversial contemporary themes, Elisabetta Benassi's work dwells in the difficult space of our present. Her work has recurrent forms such as the use of installation, video and photography that together as devices create strong emotional suggestions and a different moral focus in the viewer. Underlying her work, we can always find a question about the contemporary condition and identity, specifically their relationship to the historic past, and a cue to reconsider it, looking at it against the light. Reconstructing a different way of reading reality and broadening the field of consciousness are thus the fundamental operations of her work.

Italian Pavilion: Flavio Favelli – La Cupola, 2013 and Rome Bone China, 2013. Falvio Favelli’s work is marked by continuous shifts between personal and collective memory, and poetic adaptation of autobiographical elements.  La Cupola is a monumental installation that originated from a liberal interpretation of a familiar element and the re-assemblage of its parts, inspired by the dome of Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome.  The architecture assumes an important role in the artist’s memories, as a destination of cultural trips taken during his childhood that provided an escape from everyday routines.   He also intervenes on twelve vintage plates, applying to them the profile of the dome, transforming it into a new image, thus concretely reflecting the process that underlies the development of memory and its cancellation.
Flavio Favelli

Italian Pavilion: Giulio Paolini – Quadri di un Esposizione, 2013. His artistic efforts deal with themes that question the concept, manifestation and vision of the artwork. From his first investigations surrounding the constituent elements of painting, his attention has been oriented toward the act of exhibition, the consideration of the work as a catalogue of his own possibilities, as well as the figure of the author and his lack of contact with the work, which preexists and transcends it.
Seen inside the Italian Pavilion Olle Granath.

Seen outside the Italian Pavilion photographer Maria Mulas.

Pin It