9 settembre 2013

Claudia Peill, Kaisu Koivisto. Intersections

Rome, Museo Hendrik Christian Andersen
September 19th 2013 – January 19th 2014
Curated by Matilde Amaturo and Maria Giuseppina Di Monte

Opening Wednesday September 18th, 6.30 pm

Intersections is a dialogue in two parts: the fifteen year-long “conversation” between Claudia Peill and Kaisu Koivisto, and the two contemporary artists’ dialogue with Hendrik Christian Andersen.

On this occasion the collaboration between Claudia Peill and Kaisu Koivisto is rooted in and inspired by the encounter with the physical location in which Andersen created his work, the grandeur of his sculptural vision and his plans for a World Centre of Communication.

In Claudia Peill’s work the space evoked by materials, images and bodies undergoes a form of transposition, and all its linguistic ambivalence converges in the combination of photography and painting, a combination that she uses to investigate individual identity, its dualism and the secret self.

Her juxtapositions always generate a form of duality/duplicity: the subjects immortalized in her photographs are translated into pictorial fragments that reverberate through an expanse of lingering memory.

Vestiges of a powerful past and fragments of natural or artificial architectures, details of a gesture, of an action, snatches of life: scenarios that are the result of translating a recognizable situation into something unknown, mysterious and shifting; and also the encounter between past, present and near future.

The intention is not that of focusing on dreamlike worlds, nor of playing visual or perceptual games with optical illusions, nor of treating the poetry of the fragment as a form of nostalgia – as a reference to the remembered past. Her aim is, rather, to create a synergic force capable of drawing in and involving time and space, the material and the immaterial.

Kaisu Koivisto explores the interplay of nature, culture and modern technologies, and investigates the ways in which man perceives and attempts to exploit natural phenomena.

Using recycled waste materials, she creates installations representing animal-like creatures, and in doing so she asks herself: how should we regard animals? What is nature?

Koivisto’s works are aesthetically ambivalent, simultaneously attractive and repulsive, the synthetic and the organic interacting. The rudimentary recycled materials she uses, like steel and leather, allude to the ordinary objects of our everyday lives and to the waste produced by a society of excess.

The worn, torn surfaces of her installations find their counterparts in her photographs of the abandoned ruins of old cold-war nuclear missile bases in Eastern Europe. The metaphysical landscape of empty buildings and moldering military equipment creates a feeling of suspense. The forces of nature are gradually devouring the artificial structures. Koivisto takes inspiration from the way in which the environment changes. Present, past and future are continually shifting.

Intersections is a form of “open-ended dialogue” in which installations, videos, photographs and paintings develop into micro narratives and – caught in the flow of the tales told by each of the Museum’s rooms – occasionally interact with Hendrik Andersen’s own works.

In defining the exhibition project, Claudia Peill and Kaisu Koivisto have influenced one another, interweaving and combining works and ideas, stepping beyond their own limits and crossing their own boundaries.

Despite the fact that their works emerge from very different experiences, both artists underline the ambiguity of their images in terms of both production and perception, offering a multitude of possible interpretations. Their work questions the value and significance of utopia – a form of megalomania, or the great illusory dreams so cherished by Hendrik – subverting and dissecting history and the human soul in equal measure.

Sponsored by the Embassy of Finland, the exhibition has been made possible thanks to the support of the Istitutum Romanum Finlandiae and the Associazione Culturale Anna Marra Contemporanea, Rome.

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