March 2, 2016 - Fondazione Merz - Exhibitions programme 2016
March 2, 2016

Fondazione Merz

(1) Wael Shawky, Al Araba Al Madfuna II, 2013. (2) Mario Merz, Foresta con video sul sentiero, 1995. (3) Botto&Bruno, Society, you're a crazy breed, 2016. 

Exhibitions programme 2016
March 9, 2016–February 5, 2017

Fondazione Merz
Via Limone 24
10141 Turin
Italy
Hours: Tuesday–Sunday 11am–7pm

T +39 011 1971 9437
info@fondazionemerz.org

www.fondazionemerz.org
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Botto&Bruno. Society, you’re a crazy breed 
March 9–June 19, 2016
Curated by Beatrice Merz and Maria Centonze 

Society, you’re a crazy breed, is a new project by Turin-based artists Botto&Bruno. Conceived as one large installation that responds to the exhibition space, it focuses on the Foundation’s symbolic value as an abandoned industrial building converted into a cultural venue.

The title of the work, taken from Eddie Vedder’s song “Society” from the soundtrack of the film Into the Wild, announces the installation as a plea to reflect upon the future of our world and its contemporary madness, in which memory tends to be constantly reset to create a present without history, a present built on ruins. 
Entering the exhibition space, the visitor is enclosed within a photographic landscape almost completely covering the gallery’s walls and floor: a dense pattern of images, printed with non-polluting inks and representing typical city outskirts that could be anywhere in the world. This is Botto&Bruno’s urban sprawl, characterised by humanity’s cultural decline: the price man has paid for the transition from the archaic agricultural civilizations to today’s supposed “affluent society."

Botto&Bruno were born and brought up in a working-class neighbourhood in Turin that was in constant search of a new identity. They view the world through the prism of a disillusioned, lucid realism that connects vision and reality, distress and hope, enchantment and ruins. This exhibition offers multiple levels of interpretation: it describes the remains of a world run amok through unplanned development, but also presents an outlook on the future, a dystopian perspective on the consequences if we don’t allow sense to communicate with sensibility and fail to nurture a deep and respectful relationship with our surroundings.

Wael Shawky 
Winner of the first edition of the Mario Merz Prize
World premiere of Al Araba Al Madfuna III at the Kunsthaus Zürich

June 11, 2016 

Fondazione Merz announces the world premiere of Wael Shawky’s new film, Al Araba Al Madfuna III, produced by Qatar Museums as part of his solo exhibition at Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha in 2015. A conversation between the artist and Abdellah Karroum, the curator of the solo exhibition to be held at the Merz Foundation in the autumn, will accompany the screening.

www.mariomerzprize.org

Mario Merz. Nature and balance
July 4–September 25, 2016 

The Foundation is dedicating an entire exhibition to a selection of Mario Merz’s works carefully chosen due to their profound association with the natural world. This theme was not unusual for the artist and it was certainly never far from his thoughts, both in his private life and in his art.

The show follows the Foundation’s inaugural exhibition in 2005, and subsequent shows on drawings (2007), paintings (2010), architectural designs (2011), and several held in collaboration with other museums. The selection is to include paintings, installations and drawings, where the artist focuses on a more poetic and social view of the earth as the creator of life.

Taking our cue from art, and with the help of music, we intend to offer reflections on our concept of the future with regards the extent to which man’s presence on the planet is sustainable. 
The show will be accompanied by a programme of concerts entitled Songlines. The music will concentrate specifically on the South Pacific, where artistic traditions blend with a sensibility towards nature in a way that still seems strange for Europeans.

Wael Shawky 
Winner of the first edition of the Mario Merz Prize
Exhibition at the Merz Foundation, Turin

November 3, 2016–February 5, 2017
Curated by Abdellah Karroum

This site-specific exhibition by Wael Shawky is based on Al Araba Al Madfuna, a film trilogy inspired by Mohammed Mostajab’s novels Dayrout Al Sharif. The trilogy was shot in the Egyptian village of the same name with Shawky filming the third part in the ancient Abydos temple, which is connected to Al Araba Al Madfuna village via an underground passage. The exhibition at the Merz Foundation, which features the installations of the Al Araba Al Madfuna series, drawings, and large installations, fills the entire space of the foundation, including its exterior areas. Together with the screenings, architectural models and set designs specially created for the exhibition generate an original atmosphere inspired by the historical, literary and cinematographic references from which the artist constructed his stories. An artist’s book accompanies the exhibition.

Wael Shawky is the winner of the first edition of the Mario Merz Prize, an international art and music prize awarded biennially. The visitors’ vote was supplemented by that of the jury, composed of Manuel Borja-Villel, Massimiliano Gioni, Beatrice Merz and Lawrence Weiner, who gave the following grounds for their decision: “In spite of the excellent contributions provided by the 5 finalists, in terms of quality, deep conceptual approach and precision of the medium used, we have found Wael Shawky’s stance to best meet the scope of this project. His work combines thematic richness, the ability to mingle sometimes intractable issues and their effective depiction, the use of film as language and a surprisingly innovative and contemporary narrative technique. Through his evocative poetic language, studied settings, thoughtful reflections on tradition, courage to eschew a Western perspective to remain in Egypt and relate the great history of the Arab world and the Middle East as a whole, Shawky has shown himself to be an artist with a wealth of inspiration. His approach relies more on the language of art to show the contradictions that emerge in the engagement between distant cultures and religious faiths than on the literal historical relevance of the events described. In this respect, Wael Shawky’s is the perfect representation of a generation’s specific point of view and as such deserves the award, enabling him to present a new project in a solo exhibition."

Complementing the exhibition at the Merz Foundation is a retrospective of the artist’s work, curated by Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev and Marcella Beccaria, at the Castello di Rivoli Museo d’Arte Contemporanea.

 

For further information please contact: 
Nadia Biscaldi: press [​at​] fondazionemerz.org
Melissa Emery, SUTTON: melissa [​at​] suttonpr.com

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