maurizio cattelan retrospective at the guggenheim preview
 
maurizio cattelan retrospective at the guggenheim preview
oct 04, 2011

maurizio cattelan retrospective at the guggenheim preview

‘mini me’ (1999), part of the ‘all’ maurizio cattelan retrospective at the guggenheim museum rubber, resin, synthetic hair, paint, and clothing, 45 x 20 x 23 cm © maurizio cattelan image © attilio maranzano, courtesy of the artist

 

 

this november, the solomon r. guggenheim museum in new york city presents ‘all‘, the first retrospective of italian-born artist maurizio cattelan, whose works treat– often provocatively– aspects of popular culture, religion, and society.

the exhibition presents over 130 works from the artist, ranging from the late 1980’s to the present. smaller-scale pieces, like his many puppet-like self-portraits and installations, are collected alongside documentation of some of his larger works, like the ‘L.O.V.E.‘ sculpture (still on display in front of the italian stock exchange building, although intended when installed in september of 2010 as a 10-day installation for milan’s fashion week), which recreates the ‘omnia munda mundis’ monument with all fingers except the middle one broken off. a site-specific installation designed by cattelan specifically for the retrospective is exhibited in the museum’s entry rotunda.

although he himself rejects overarching descriptions of his work, maurizio cattelan is frequently compared to a shakespearian fool, using wit and jests towards the expression of more universal truths. critics and viewers reflect that his works– sometimes playful, often highly controversial, and frequently blurring the boundaries between art and reality– call into question commonly accepted values and ways of thinking. taken at times to be critical of religion and other organized social structures, the pieces might be understood to exist without a particular intended significance, but rather as a means to encourage active questioning and engagement.

 

 

maurizio cattelan retrospective at the guggenheim preview ‘L.O.V.E.’ (2010) carrara marble figure: 470 x 220 x 72 cm; base: 630 x 470 x 470 cm image © designboom

 

 

maurizio cattelan retrospective at the guggenheim preview ‘novecento’ (1997) taxidermied horse, leather saddle, rope, and pulley 201.2 x 271.3 x 68.6 cm © maurizio cattelan image © paolo pellion di persano, courtesy of the artist

 

 

maurizio cattelan retrospective at the guggenheim preview ‘la rivoluzione siamo noi’ (2000) polyester resin, wax, pigment, felt suit, and metal coat rack figure: 123.8 x 35.6 x 43.2 cm; coat rack: 189.9 x 47 x 52.1 cm © maurizio cattelan image © attilio maranzano, courtesy of the artist

 

 

maurizio cattelan retrospective at the guggenheim preview untitled (2001) wax, pigment, human hair, fabric, and polyester resin 150 x 60 x 40 cm © maurizio cattelan image © attilio maranzano, courtesy of the artist

 

 

maurizio cattelan retrospective at the guggenheim preview ‘we’ (2010) polyester resin, polyurethane, rubber, paint, human hair, fabric, and wood 68 x 148 x 78.7 cm © maurizio cattelan image © paolo pellion di persano, courtesy of the artist

 

 

maurizio cattelan retrospective at the guggenheim preview ‘him’ (2001) polyester resin, wax, pigment, human hair, and suit 101 x 41 x 53 cm © maurizio cattelan image © paolo pellion di persano, courtesy of the artist

 

 

maurizio cattelan retrospective at the guggenheim preview ‘la nona ora’ (1999) polyester resin, wax, pigment, human hair, fabric, clothing, accessories, stone, glass, and carpet dimensions variable © maurizio cattelan image © attilio maranzano, courtesy of the artist

 

  • The Biennale pigeons and the asteroid-struck Pope are pretty good but Catellan often misses, no matter how ironic, or doubly ironic, he is: it’s too much about him, or just not thought-through enough.

    Mort d'Urban

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