until 27.01. | #4078ARTatBerlin | ChertLüdde shows from 27 Oktober 2023 the exhibition “stars around this beautiful moon hide back their luminous form” by the artist Rodrigo Hernández and the exhibition “A. on A.” by the artist Franco Mazzucchelli.
ChertLüdde and Klosterfelde Edition are pleased to present an exhibition by Franco Mazzucchelli (b. 1939, Milan) in two chapters, A. on A. and A. to A., across both gallery locations in Berlin. Stimulating continuous spatial research and including the observers through physical participation, the exhibition offers an engaging overview of the Italian maestro’s extensive works.
Over the course of his decades-long practice, several generations have been involved in his artistic interventions, one example among the most recent being the Art on Art (A. on A.) series on view at ChertLüdde.
This selection of works, produced from 2010 onwards, includes sections of inflatable sculptures that were part of several public interventions. Made of PVC, the works temporally became part of the urban fabric by allowing the public to take on unexpected social roles: the public did not passively admire the artworks, but was encouraged and rather eager to touch them, scribble on them, decorate them, and leave traces of their personal lives, thus transforming them into testimonies of a collective existence. Now, hung indoors, the graffitied PVC works become evidence of people’s participation. Their signatures and marks act as traces of their temporary interactions, allowing the audience to become co-producers of Mazzucchelli’s artistic events which have literally been produced and signed by many hands. This series directly highlights the importance of the audience in a more general artistic discourse. For what would art be without someone to interact with?
This is a question that Mazzucchelli has addressed since the 1960s, when he first started exhibiting his PVC sculptures of various forms and sizes in urban and natural spaces or on bodies of water, in Italy and abroad.
Franco Mazzucchelli, “A. auf A. (Museo Civico Ala Ponzone, Cremona, 2010)”, 2011, PCV, Air, 150 × 100 cm, photo: Andrea Rossetti, Courtesy of the Artist and ChertLüdde, Berlin
At Klosterfelde Edition, a selection of his work from the 1970s is preserved in frames containing deflated fragments of PVC and photographic documentation of the sculpture during its intervention. Titled Art to Abandon (A. to A), these interventions shaped Italian public art while simultaneously reflecting the country’s technical and industrial advancements experienced in the late 20th century. At Klosterfelde Edition, his work is also in dialogue with works by Hanne Darboven, Lara Favaretto, and Matt Mullican.
Together, the exhibition across two venues in Berlin surveys Franco Mazzucchelli’s practice through close consideration of the affect of art and how to invite a wider audience into art production and discourse.
Franco Mazzucchelli (b. 1939, Milan) lives and works in Milan. He was professor of Techniques of Sculpture at the Brera Academy of Fine Arts in Milan. His works have been shown in historical exhibitions, including the 15th Milan Triennale (1973), the 37th Venice Biennale (1976) and the 11th Rome Quadrennial (1986).
Portrait of Franco Mazzucchelli in his studio in Milan, 2023, photo: Andrea Rossett, Courtesy of ChertLüdde, Berlin and Franco Mazzucchelli, Milano
Known for his pioneering experimentation with synthetic materials in the sixties, as well as his large-scale, public spatial installations that disrupted the quotidian conventions of local inhabitants, Franco Mazzucchelli has produced a decades-spanning, prolific body of work that extends to this day. His most well-known series A. to A. (Art to Abandon) consists of inflatable sculptures made of PVC that were at first abandoned in lakes and deserts before being left in public spaces across Italy such as squares, schools and factories. The works temporally became part of the urban fabric, and the contact with passers-by activated their unexpected social roles: the public did not passively admire the artworks but was rather keen to touch them, move them around, play with them and take them away. Of the majority of these “abandoned” objects, the only remains are photographs and videos that document interactions between the artworks and their ambiances.
His later series, Bieca Decorazione, which translates to “pure decoration”, are works that, unlike their ephemeral A. to A. predecessors, reference their objecthood and the art market. A statement against the commercialization of art that seems at first to contradict itself, the Bieca Decorazione series relies on context and history for its value beyond mere commodity. His inflatable sculptures and spatial installations have been displayed in several locations in Italy and abroad, such as Camargue, France; Alfa Romeo Factory, Milan; the Fine Art Academy of Brera, Milan; Sforza Castle, Milan; Piazza dei Priori, Volterra; Bergamo; Varese; Lake Como, Como; and Munich. His works have been exhibited at MACRO – Museum of Contemporary Art of Rome, Rome; Centre Pompidou-Metz, Metz; Cité de l’Architecture, Paris; ArtScience Museum, Singapore; Kunsthalle Wien, Wien; Konsthall Lund, Lund; Center for Art and Media – ZKM, Karlsruhe; nGbK, Berlin; Museo del Novecento, Milan; Triennale di Milano, Milan; Villa Croce, Genova; among others. Franco Mazzucchelli won the Alfredo d’Andrade 2022 Lifetime Achievement Award.
Rodrigo Hernández – stars around this beautiful moon hide back their luminous form
Can we say with certainty that animals dream in their sleep? What would we see if we could look inside the dreams of a non-human creature, and how could we translate back these visions? Is our notion of “dreaming” inevitably married to language? These are some of the questions posed by Mexican artist Rodrigo Hernández (1983, Mexico City) in his new exhibition stars around this beautiful moon / hide back their luminous form.
In Hernández’s practice, he often invites us to suspend our beliefs and give space to an imaginative awareness of the world. In his second solo exhibition at the gallery, Hernández speculates about the possibility of decentering the discourse about dreaming from the ever-prominent framework of the human experience, contemplating the many uncertainties but also the emotional universe surrounding consciousness.
Rodrigo Hernández, Detail of “Bat Sleep”, 2023; Oil on wood; 30 × 35 × 3 cm, photo: Marjorie Brunet Plaza, Courtesy of The Artist and ChertLüdde, Berlin
Introduced by a large hand-hammered stainless steel piece in the first room of the gallery, the exhibition leads the visitor into a scattered composition of floor tiles upon which rests a monkey head cast in bronze. On the walls, the viewer encounters a series of small oil paintings depicting animals asleep. The slumbering creatures, mostly bats and monkeys, offer no further details to interpret what they’re experiencing, but their silent rest nevertheless leads to many questions. This position of the viewer vis-à-vis a painting, Hernández suggests, is a replay of other occurrences related to both the world of dreams and of animals: in all of them, the most important feature being phenomenal experience; sensing, feeling, and perceiving (in contrast with rationality or representational consciousness). In essence, this experience is radically subjective and untransferable, perhaps wholly inaccessible to others. This unconditional mine-ness, this inner life of a dream, of a painting and of an animal is what keeps us guessing and what makes the visitor not only an observer but an active “imaginator”.
Hernández proposes with this new exhibition to understand art making as a dream: an active phenomenon grappling with the tentative and the indeterminate, a state of consciousness with its own independent rules and an act of “self-projection”; that is, a channel to explore the world from multiple possible perspectives.
This exhibition is followed by the artist’s solo exhibition on the same subject at the Wattis Art Institute in San Francisco, California opening on December 14, 2023.
Rodrigo Hernández (b. 1983, Mexico City) lives and works in Mexico City. He studied at the Jan Van Eyck Academie, Maastricht (2014) and obtained a BA at the Staatliche Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Karlsruhe in 2013. Hernández’s highly idiosyncratic visual vocabulary invites, in a similar manner as fiction, the suspension of belief and the adoption of imaginative perception. Each of his installations is constructed as a rebus of various sources, such as poetry, philosophy, narrative and dreams. The myriad of historical and aesthetic references in his work serves not as a statement in itself, but rather as an experiment on synthesis, which the viewer navigates through like a cosmos of possibilities. Hernández’s paintings, reliefs, sculptures and installations operate like machines for flexing the imagination, triggering encounters between imagery and meaning-making, and between forms and their environments.
Portrait Rodrigo Hernández, 2022, photo: Stella Bottai, Courtesy of ChertLüdde, Berlin and Rodrigo Hernández, Lisboa
Hernández was awarded with several international awards and grants, including the Campari Art Prize, 2018; Cité International des Arts Paris, 2016; BBVA-Museo Carrillo Gil and Jóvenes Creadores, 2016; National Fund of the Arts-FONCA, 2016; Laurenz-Haus Stiftung, Basel and Kunststiftung Baden-Württemberg, 2015; Jan Van Eyck Academie Stipendium, 2013; Graduiertenstipendium Landesstiftung Baden-Württemberg, 2013; DAAD-Preis zur Jahresausstellung, AdbK Karlsruhe, 2012, among others. He was a finalist of the Future Generation Art Prize in 2019 and attended the Istanbul Modern residencies in 2020; Pivô, São Paulo in 2018; the Residency Unlimited, New York, 2013; Christoph Merian Stiftung, 2013 and the Salzburg Sommerakademie, 2013.
His recent exhibitions include: Gothenburg International Biennial for Contemporary Art, Gothenburg; Künstlerhaus Bremen, Bremen; Kestner Gesellschaft, Hannover; Museo Jumex, Mexico City; Swiss Institute, New York City; Museo de Arte Moderno de Medellín, Medellín; Culturgest, Porto; Istanbul Modern, Istanbul; Pinchuk ArtCenter, Kyiv; Pivô, São Paulo, Brazil; SALTS, Basel; GaMec, Bergamo; SCAD Museum of Art, Savannah, USA; ZKM Museum of Contemporary Art, Karlsruhe; Kunsthalle Winterthur; Kunstverein Nuremberg; Bonnefanten Museum, Maastricht; Midway Contemporary, Minneapolis, USA; Gladstone Gallery, Brussels; MendesWoodDM, Brussels; 12th Biennial Femsa Monterrey, Monterrey; 5th Moscow Biennial of Young Art, Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Moscow; Museum Haus Konstruktiv, Zurich; Kunsthalle Basel, Basel; kurimanzutto, Mexico City.
Opening: Friday, 27 Oktober 2023, 18:00 – 20:30 hrs
Exhibition dates: Friday, 27 October 2023 – Saturday, 27 January 2024To the Gallery
Caption title: Rodrigo Hernández, “Flux of Things (Human & Monkey)”, 2023; Hand hammered stainless steel; 180 × 360 cm, photo: Marjorie Brunet Plaza, Courtesy of the artist and ChertLüdde, Berlin
Exhibtion Rodrigo Hernández + Franco Mazzucchelli – ChertLüdde | Contemporary Art in Berlin | Contemporary Art | Ausstellungen Berlin Galerien | ART at Berlin