SEPTEMBER 18TH 2014 - JANUARY 4TH 2015
++ JANNIS KOUNELLIS
A key figure in contemporary art, Jannis Kounellis got hold of Saint-Etienne's heritage and memory to create an 'in situ' piece of art. The exhibition is also a retrospective of his 25-year career as an artist.
One of the major aspects in Janis Kounellis is his respectful use of all kinds of material, even though some could be considered as 'common' in comparison to the more noble and oft-used marble or bronze. He aims at giving a powerful meaning to these everyday objects which are loaded with history. His work can carry several meanings, so leaving the interpretation open is of utmost importance.
Emotions are at the centre of Jannis Kounellis's art – his works act as a catalyst for the resurgence of emotions. This cathartic feature grants the spectator with a very active role.
++ PAUL WALLACH 'WHERE WHAT WAS'
French by adoption, Paul Wallach designs artworks which always seem about to fall down. He plays with forms, shadows and materials to mess with the spectator's perception of things. A true perfectionist, he never leaves anything to chance – instead, he designs and shapes his works with the greatest minutiae.
Giving the impression that the artwork is falling or is about to collapse is made possible through a play on forms and shadows. Paul Wallach explains that the illusion comes from the fact that the mind is confused and mixes up what it expects and what the reality is. These works, while perfectly solid and stable, seem to be hanging by one thread.
The Museum has the immense privilege to display twenty art pieces by this artist.
They all share the same particularity – they are leaning against the wall, thus reinforcing the notion of fragile balance which is dear to the artist.
++ GIANNI CARAVAGGIO
Gianni Caravaggio's leitmotiv is to create a poetic image through the assemblage of real and identifiable materials. He also likes to deal with immateriality and shadows to create a precarious balance which seems to shift according to the lighting of the room and the angle from which the piece is being watched.
Gianni Caravaggio's works can be described as a succession of actions: balancing, attracting, creating, making, developing, imitating. Every piece seems to be spreading out on the floor from its most minimal form, be it very noble (marble) or quite elementary (flour). The floor has a very important signification in Caravaggio's approach – he uses it and presents it as a canvas full of possibilities. Modern art movements such as Arte Povera, Fluxus, Arte Processuale and post-minimalism clearly influenced him. What all these movements have in common is that they tend to go beyond the naturalist representation of things and that they share a close relationship to the materials they use – their junction, their accumulation, their dispersion. However, they don't always agree on the symbols and the narrative that these materials convey.
++ CORNELIA SCHLEIME "Echofenster - œuvres sur papier 1988 – 2014" ('Echofenster – Works On Paper 1988-2014')
Cornelia Schleime's graphic work is shown in the Museum's graphic art department. There are different layers to her drawings – their apparent frailty actually hides quite a complex chimeric world.
The complexity and the maturity of Cornelia Schleime's imaginative universe will be unveiled to a French audience for the first time. Her work is influenced by a very active art scene based in Berlin where, for a couple of years, the interest for contemporary drawing has gained momentum among the last generations of artist. The works of Schleime manages to convey the artistic energy which emanates from this culturally exuberant city. The Cornelia Schleime exhibition addresses two of the Museum's main missions – displaying works that can be seen as paradigmatic examples of contemporary positions and highlighting graphic arts.
++ LOCAL LINE 16, BRUSSELS
Since February 2010, the exhibition programme Local Line has opened the Museum's doors to budding artists. This cross-cultural enhancement approach aims at creating a form of emulation between local and foreign artists through a series of exchanges.
++ PAUL-MARTIAL PUBLISHING, 'La Belle Publicité' (Beautiful Adverts), from the Museum's permanent collection
The Paul-Martial Publishing exhibition will present for the first time a selection of the photographs held in the museum's collection. Paul Martial's publishing company was created in 1926 and specialised in taking photographs of factories and industrial premises. These vintage prints were to be used as advertising illustrations designed to stand out from other run-of-the-mill campaigns of the times, as the studio was aiming at creating 'Beautiful Adverts'.
This first showing is a prelude to a major international exhibition, 'Entre La Symphonie Industrielle Et Le Temps Des Avatars' (Between The Industrial Symphony and The Avatar Era), to be held at the Musée d’Art Moderne Et Contemporain De Saint-Étienne Métropole in 2016. This exhibition will be at the crossroads of all the aforementioned fields of study, but will also be opened to international contributors and to modern and contemporary artists. The proceedings of the symposium 'La Commande Industrielle' will be available to visitors during the exhibition.
++ 'USart', The Museum's collection of American art
The collection of American art exhibition puts into perspective highlights from the New York art scene from the 1960s to now, featuring works from founding figures such as Donald Judd, Sol LeWitt, Robert Morris, Ellsworth Kelly and Frank Stella, among others...
- Paul Wallach, "Before the Nearly Last" (détail), 2013. © Paul Wallach. Courtesy Galerie Jaeger Bucher, Paris. Photo : Georges Poncet.
- Gianni Caravaggio, "Iniziare un tempo", 2013. Courtesy galerie Kaufmann-Repetto, Milan. © photo : Roberto Marossi.
- Cornelia Schleime, "Bernsteinkleid", 2011. © Cornelia Schleime.
- Paul-Martial "Beautiful Adverts", "Camera", 1932. © DR.