Curated by: Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev e Marcella Beccaria
As part of the first part of a two-year project that investigates expressionist forms of art, and in anticipation of the collective exhibition Espressioni Part II which will take place in autumn 2021, Castello di Rivoli is organizing the exhibition for the first time in an Italian institution dedicated to Anne Imhof (Giessen, Germany, 1978), artist awarded the Golden Lion for the German pavilion at the 2017 Venice Biennale.
The Imhof exhibition, commissioned by the Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art, Art Institute of Chicago and Tate Modern, London, will open to the public with a great performance specially conceived by the artist for the Manica Lunga space. It will include installations, paintings and sculptures in an unprecedented display of new and recent works, including a selection of drawings never exhibited. Through his performances, Imhof creates an exhibition space capable of provoking in the viewer a sense of alienation and detachment that re-proposes in an anxious way the aporias of the contemporary world.
Imhof's works investigate the concept of identity in the digital age and the possibilities of looking and being looked at, of performing and being exhibited. "The artistic material that Imhof uses", says Director Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, "is the gathering of people whose movements and gestures create, together with the music, a disturbing experience where the audience is not distinguished from the performers who, in contagious and viral, they form groups characterized by an attention to narcissism and bodily presence in a digital age, like ours, in which the virtual experience seems to take over more and more ".
The exhibition with performance by Anne Imhof is part of the broader exhibition context Espressioni, the large group exhibition in two parts organized by the Museum between 2020 and 2021. The first part of Espressioni consists of the dialogue between Anne Imhof's works and a core selected of historical masterpieces. Espressioni investigates the aesthetic fractures that recur in the history of art and that often accompany both moments of great scientific and technological innovation and the crises linked to these revolutions on a cultural level.
The contemporary era is characterized by the digital revolution, machine learning and Artificial Intelligence. Faced with these changes, languages that can be traced back to expressionism emerge as forms of skepticism or extreme subjectivity. The artists pushed by the urgency to verify their own vitality in the face of the irruption of the technique move between an exasperated individualism and forms of romantic melancholy and visions altered or terrified by everyday reality. Among the most prestigious historical works that will be presented in the context of Espressioni Part I in 2020, there is the oil on canvas Narciso, 1597-1598 by Caravaggio (Michelangelo Merisi, Milan, 1571 - Porto Ercole, 1610) from the National Galleries d'Arte Antica Palazzo Barberini, which invites a contemporary reflection on the question of identity and on the image of a self today increasingly characterized by an exhibitionistic desire for one's image through digital technology.
Other works on display include La Pazza, 1905 by Giacomo Balla (National Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art, Rome); Study for Portrait IX, 1957 by Francis Bacon (Collection of the Francesco Federico Cerruti Foundation for Art) and Allegoria (la zuffa), 1515-1516 by Dosso Dossi (Institute of Art History, Giorgio Cini Foundation). Also on display will be the works The Penitent Magdalene, 1645 ca. by Andrea Vaccaro (attributed to) and Samson and Delilah, c. 1630-1638 by Artemisia Gentileschi.