15 Nov - 14 Dec 2014
The Gardens of Sardinia, Cyprus and Jerusalem
15 November - 14 December 2014
Curators: Lorenzo Benedetti, Micaela Deiana
The Gardens of Sardinia, Cyprus and Jerusalem is a project by the Italian artist Paolo Chiasera realized both at MAN Museum of Nuoro in Sardinia (Italy) and De Vleeshal centre for visual arts in Middelburg (Netherlands).
The work follows an itinerary undertaken by the artist in 2011 with his elaboration of the concept of “Exhibition Painting”, a genre that he invented featuring the creation of canvas based exhibitions, which may include works by different artists, done in the past or commissioned for the occasion. The painting is conceived as a place for artists, curators and institutions to come together and exchange ideas.
Continuing this research, Chiasera developed Secondo Stile, a nomadic artist run project space, which in its name “Second Style”, refers to a stylistic development in Roman art, characterized by the emphasis on power of imagination. This imaginary represents the ideal space for experimentation and the definition of artistic production following new modes of exhibition.
With The Gardens of Sardinia, Cyprus and Jerusalem, Secondo Stile enters the museum for the first time. In this context Paolo Chiasera reflects on the recurrence of the life cycle, symbolized in palaeolithic and neolithic culture, which is permeated by a religion closely connected with the cult of the Mother Goddess, nature and her manifestations in earth and water. Through reflections on the cyclic nature of life and human history, cultural heritage in different historic periods and territorial contexts, Chiasera has arrived at a singular interpretation of the permanent collections of the museum of MAN and De Vleeshal, in a vision that weaves together archaeology and the contemporary world.
Starting from the emotions stirred by a visit to the gardens of the 18th-century Villa d’Orri in Sarroch, Sardinia and the atmosphere of the Augustan Villa of Livia in Rome, Paolo Chiasera evokes a nocturnal garden on canvas, in the space of which, together with the co-curator Micaela Deiana, he proposes a selection of works from the collection of De Vleeshal.
In the gothic space of De Vleeshal the Garden of Sardinia, Cyprus and Jerusalem will incorporate the ceramic installation The ground of the Sea (2009) by Katinka Bock, which analyses how elements of a space may display the traces of time. This work from the collection of De Vleeshal creates a relationship between the space’s interior and exterior landscapes, and relates to the longstanding Dutch tradition of landscape painting. The sculpture Illuminati (2009) by Riccardo Previdi, is a self-supporting structure made up of polished and varnished aluminum tubes. Like the scattered sticks of the game “Mikado,” the tubes draw and reflect lines of color on the regimented black and white pattern of the flooring, blending together the characteristics of the architectural environment. The third work from the collection, also specifically related to the exhibition space of De Vleeshal is the documentation of Innere Stimme by Olaf Nicolai, a continuous performance that took place at De Vleeshal in 2010. It is based on Robert Schumann’s Humoreske Opus 20 for piano, a composition written for unaccompanied piano, where the middle staff cannot be sung, but the melody will influence the interpretation of the piece. The audience of the music, unable to see the score, can only imagine the influence of the “Inner Voice”. The dialogue between the three works and The Gardens of Sardinia, Cyprus and Jerusalem will be accompanied by photographic documentation of the solo-exhibitions of Bock, Previdi and Nicolai at De Vleeshal, paying homage to the artistic direction of De Vleeshal’s former director Lorenzo Benedetti.
Text: Micaela Deiana
Paolo Chiasera (Bologna, 1978) lives and works in Berlin. Museum solo exhibitions include: Ain’t No Grave Gonna Hold My Body Down at S. M. A. K . Stedelijk Museum voor Actuele Kunst, Gent (2010); Unter Freiem Himmel / Under the Open Sky at MARTa Herford, Herford (2009); Forget The Heroes at MACRO, Museo d’Arte Contemporanea Roma (2008); The Trilogy: Cornelius at MAMbo, Museo dʼArte Moderna di Bologna (2006). Besides his artistic research, he has worked as a lecturer at different institutions, among them Kunsthochschule of Kassel (2013) and the Transart Institute of Berlin (2011).