16 May – 19 June 2012
Memory, an exhibition of nine international artists working in sculpture today, travels to PAN in Naples after being shown at Rosenfeld Porcini in 2011.
From Roberto Almagnoʼs beautifully-crafted abstract forms made from wood, to the visceral approach of Steve Goddardʼs pieces made of pigment, horsehair and clay, the exhibition showcases the diversity that exists in contemporary sculpture today. Each artist takes a radically different approach to their work, using different materials, aesthetic frameworks and concerns. All deal with “memory” in distinct yet equally powerful ways, and it is the poetic sensibility they share that creates a sense of unity.
Roberto Almagno, sculpts exclusively with wood that he collects in the forests outside his native city of Rome, and refines into works of great formal perfection that retain a contemporary lightness. His striking sculpture Memory, gives the exhibition its title. By contrast American artist Leonardo Drew, who also sculpts principally with wood, is more concerned with reflections on the human condition than idealist interpretations of nature, and finds his inspiration within the urban world.
Finnish artist Kaarina Kaikkonen is known for her large scale, visually complex narrative pieces made from items of discarded and recycled clothing. She will be showing a large wall piece and a smaller piece created from shirts and a jacket. Poignant and full of absence, her sculptures recall the people who previously inhabited the clothes. Rossana Zaera also draws on personal and collective memory. Her wonderfully delicate yet powerful sculptures – often featuring her leitmotif bed – are made from a variety of materials, and continually appear to be on the verge of collapse, recalling the difficulties of childhood and the delicate trapeze act we all as human beings enact between life and death. For fellow Spaniard Mar Arza, memory is bound up with a philosophical discourse about time and the impossibility of permanence. She often works with text, paper and stone, and will be showing two pieces for MEMORY, including a sand piece which measures the ineluctable passing of time.
Spazio Visivo are two artists from Mantua; the sculptor Paolo Cavinato, and the composer, Stefano Trevisi. The principal work they will be exhibiting is both a wall- mounted installation and a soundscape, a 4-metre wall piece entitled Icona, which recounts the disappearing city of old Berlin. Comprising some sixty boxes of various sizes that are either painted or contain photographic and other images, this visual mosaic is accompanied by a soundscape made from recorded sounds of the city.
Andreas Blankʼs realistic carved trompe l’oeils seem casual at first sight. Yet on closer inspection, his arrangements are precisely staged and full of humour. Working with the technique of a classical carver, the light bulbs, transport boxes and wine bottles are made from rare stones such as marble, alabaster and sandstone. Nicola Samori is an artist steeped in the tradition of 17th century Italian painting and sculpture, but with a determinedly contemporary stance. He creates figurative pieces using traditional techniques, which he alters so that they become deconstructed representations of classical sculpture.
Steve Goddard, the only UK artist in the show, is painter as well as sculptor. Goddard works and experiments with alternative materials such as cloth, plastic, fabric, lace, horsehair and clay. For this exhibition, he will show a series of heads made from fibre and pigment, which include characters from the life and works of Vincent Van Gogh. Filtered with his personal approach, Goddard tells us a story of a personal trip bringing back old memories, lost worlds and cultures. Full of mystery and enigma, the work of the German artist Silvia Hatzl revolves around the concept of transience, with her manipulation of tissues alluding to life and death in brave and poetic terms.