THE VORTICISTS: REBEL ARTISTS IN LONDON AND NEW YORK, 1914–1918
January 29 – May 15, 2011
Curated by Mark Antliff and Vivien Greene
INTERNATIONAL SYMPOSIUM "THE VORTICISTS", 29.01.2011
The Vorticists: Rebel Artists in London and New York, 1914-18 is the first exhibition devoted to this London-based movement to be presented in Italy, and the first to attempt to recreate the three Vorticist exhibitions mounted during World War I that served to define the group’s radical aesthetic for an Anglo-American public. An abstracted figurative style, combining machine-age forms and the energetic imagery suggested by a vortex, Vorticism emerged in London at a moment when the staid English art scene had been jolted by the advent of French Cubism and Italian Futurism. Absorbing elements from both, but also defining themselves against these foreign idioms, Vorticism was a short-lived, but pivotal modernist movement that essentially spanned the years of World War I.
The show will feature approximately 100 works, comprising paintings, sculpture, works on paper, photography, and printed matter, by renowned artists such as Wyndham Lewis, Jacob Epstein, Edward Wadsworth and Henri Gaudier-Brzeska. The Peggy Guggenheim Collection will be the second of three venues for the show, following its presentation at the Nasher Museum of Art, Duke University, Durham, NC, (September 30, 2010–January 2, 2011) and before it travels to Tate Britain, London, UK (June 14–September 4, 2011).
The exhibition is co-organized by the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice, the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, Durham, NC, USA, and Tate Britain.
1900 – 1961. ITALIAN ART IN THE GUGGENHEIM COLLECTIONS
Arca, Church of San Marco, Vercelli
February 26–June 5, 2011
Curated by Luca Massimo Barbero
Umberto Boccioni, Materia, 1912. Gianni Mattioli Collection. Long-term loan to the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice
Works from the Guggenheim collections in New York and Venice return to Vercelli for the fourth time with a temporary exhibition dedicated to 20th century Italian art. The show will feature paintings, sculptures and works on paper, including masterpieces, depicting the birth, maturation and development of the avant-garde in Italy from the early 1900s until the 1960s. The exhibition proceeds chronologically and ideologically opening with works by Medardo Rosso and Gaetano Previati. Then follows the explosive entry on the Italian scene of Futurism, with masterpieces by Umberto Boccioni, Giacomo Balla and Carlo Carrà. From Giorgio de Chirico’s pittura metafisica the exhibition continues with post-war paintings by Mario Sironi and Filippo de Pisis and then the great abstract period with works by Afro, Bice Lazzari, Giuseppe Capogrossi, Emilio Vedova, Alberto Burri, Lucio Fontana, Mirko, Pietro Consagra, Arnaldo Pomodoro.
ILEANA SONNABEND. AN ITALIAN PORTRAIT
May 29–October 2, 2011
Ileana Sonnabend (Bucharest 1914 – New York, 2007) was a formidable gallerist and collector of contemporary art. She was the first wife of Leo Castelli. This exhibition looks at the Italian component of the Sonnabend collection, not just Italian painting and sculpture but the work of international artists whose art takes into account the traditions and landscape of Italy. Ileana Sonnabend’s love of Italy is the thread that ties more than 60 works in this exhibition, a love which was expressed through her dedication to building this collection. The exhibition will showcase the works of the great masters of Arte Povera, such as Pistoletto, Zorio, Calzolari, Merz, Anselmo and Kounellis, together with artists such as Fontana, Rotella, Schifano, Manzoni, Festa. Also included are works by American artists Twombly, Rauschenberg, Lichtenstein, Morris and Koons and an array of international photographers, such as Becher, Höfer, Sugimoto e Esser. The exhibition is organized by Antonio Homem, director of the Sonnabend Gallery, New York and Philip Rylands, director of the Peggy Guggenheim Collection.
THEMES & VARIATIONS. SCRIPT AND SPACE | GASTONE NOVELLI AND VENICE
October 15, 2011–January 1, 2012
curated by Luca Massimo Barbero
First conceived in 2002 by Luca Massimo Barbero, this is the third edition of an innovative but now proven exhibition formula that offers visitors fresh perceptions of the museum’s collections, whether known or less known, by means of a dialogue with works by more contemporary artists from other collections, thus opening up new, multiple possible interpretations. Works from the early 20th c. avant-garde connect thematically in a confrontation and comparison with post war and contemporary works, tracing the evolution of forms of visual expression as they change with time.
Beginning with Modernist works from early last century characteristic of Peggy Guggenheim’s collection and that of Gianni Mattioli, such as Cubism and Futurism, the exhibition looks at the use of script: as language, as sign in the works of Pablo Picasso and of the Italian Futurist Carlo Carrà to the more contemporary script of Lawrence Weiner and Vincenzo Agnetti. Other thematic rooms follow, in which Piet Mondrian’s inflexible geometries are offset by Gianni Colombo’s flexible, and elastic spaces and by the self-contained spaces of Mario Nigro. Uniformly patterned works, with a density to the point of congestion by Rudolf Stingel, contrast with Jackson Pollock’s allover calligraphy. Writing-as-sign in Bice Lazzari compares with the cryptic vocabulary of marks in Dadamaino and Riccardo de Marchi. Then again, in a gallery dedicated to nature, a roaring lion by Mirko contradicts the complacency of a chimpanzee by Francis Bacon. With Celestial Bodies by Rufino Tamayo, the exhibition engages the notion of cosmic space, understood as a multiplicity of perspectives, with works by François Morellet, Arthur Duff and Lucio Fontana.
A tribute to Gastone Novelli, a major figure in Italian art in the 1950s and 60s, closes the exhibition. Gastone Novelli and Venice (curated by Luca Massimo Barbero in partnership with the Archivio Gastone Novelli, Rome) presents his poetical inscriptions on outsize canvases, in which marks, colors, and words are suspended in a delicate balance, exploring his relation to Venice. Together with rare sketchbooks of the 1960s which depict Venice, there are canvases painted between 1964 and 1968, few of them ever exhibited prior to this exhibition, in which Venice may be either his subject or the place of his studio. 1968 was a critical year for Novelli—he was at the center of the polemics and the protests against the Biennale that year, where he turned the paintings in his one-man show to the wall, thus linking himself and his work to a now legendary episode in the student riots of that year.
REVEALING PAPERS. THE HIDDEN TREASURES OF THE PEGGY GUGGENHEIM COLLECTION
Lu.C.C.A - Lucca Center of Contemporary Art
September 18, 2011–January 15, 2012
curated by Maurizio Vanni
De Kooning, Untitled (1958), Picasso, Half-length Portrait of a Man in a Striped Jersey (1939); Kandinsky, Upward (1929); Ernst, The Antipope (1941 c.); Smith, Untitled (1931).
Much has been written and said about Peggy Guggenheim and her collection but her appreciation of works on paper, demonstrated by the fact that at her death in 1979 these accounted for more than seventy works in her collection, in addition to all those works that in the last thirty years of her life, from 1949 to 1979, she donated to museums around the world, has been overlooked. Drawing on the holdings of the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, this exhibition brings to light a collection of works on paper by some of the greatest artists of the twentieth century. Among them are works by Alechinsky, Arp, Calder, de Kooning, Ernst, Fontana, Hundertwasser, Kandinsky, Kupka, Man Ray, Masson, Matta, Mondrian, Moore, Picasso, Richter, Rivera, Sironi, Tancredi, Tanguy, Tobey and Vedova. Some were shown at the 1948 Venice Biennale, others have been exhibited only rarely and others have never been exhibited prior to this exhibition at Lu.C.C.A.
Most painters of the last century devoted time and effort to working on paper, using this support as an arena for relatively free expression and for and their more daring experiments. Reliving important moments in the history of twentieth century art through Peggy Guggenheim’s drawings -- without recourse to all those that she donated to collections such as those of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, or the Tel Aviv Museum of Art -- is a major cultural and educational event.