April 9, 2018 - Fondazione Adolfo Pini - Jimmie Durham: Labyrinth
April 9, 2018

Fondazione Adolfo Pini

Jimmie Durham & Maria Thereza Alves, The Man Who Had a Beautiful House (still), 1994. Video. Courtesy of the artist.

Jimmie Durham
April 10–June 29, 2018

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From April 10 to June 29, 2018, during the Milan Art Week and miart fair, Fondazione Adolfo Pini is pleased to present Labyrinth by Jimmie Durham (U.S., 1940), a site-specific project by the artist and curated by Gabi Scardi.

Since the 1960s, Jimmie Durham’s work has highlighted the system of conventions in which we live, in relation to our ideas, behaviours, history and its interpretations. Questioning these conventions means opening oneself to doubt, highlighting the multi-faceted nature of reality, allowing a multiplicity of possible visions to come to light.

Many of his works consist of arrangements of natural or industrial materials, grafted one onto the other. Such materials usually escape our attention or are too far below any of our value to be taken into account; therefore, these works stand as statements on the nature of things and their value. Some of Durham’s installations are made from found or created objects: these objects encompass everyday life, tell stories, and tell us who we are. Indeed, his activity is based on his will to give back to objects the possibility to show their own essence; deconstructing any superstructures surrounding them, and hence deconstructing the fundamental concepts of consumer culture.

This framework includes the artist’s focus on the theme of architecture, an element that has always been central to his work. Over the years, Durham has wanted to undermine the assertiveness of architecture, its monumentality. Object of his criticism is the sense of stability which makes an individual certain and peremptory, taking her away from doubt by bridling her critical thinking.

For Fondazione Adolfo Pini, the artist has created a new, site-specific project, working on the existing space and its structure. In particular, Durham brings out what is normally "inside" the body of an architectural object; showing its materials, revealing what hides under its coating: "viscera," "entrails," what has been dismissed; that is, Innards. By extension, the artist addresses the question of what is given space to and what is hidden, what is said and what is omitted. The project combines a video from 1994, The Man Who Had A Beautiful House, linked to an idea of living that comes before and goes beyond the walls of a building.

In the refined yet history-loaded space of the Foundation, through the theme of architecture, the artist faces once again the ideas of social and cultural constructs and the structures, conventions and categories that follow.

Jimmie Durham (born 1940, U.S.) is an intellectual, essayist and poet, as well as a visual artist; and one of the main artists of our time.

About Fondazione Adolfo Pini 
Fondazione Adolfo Pini, founded in 1991 thanks to Adolfo Pini (1920-1986) and named after him, is based in Milan in the elegant late 19th century building situated in Corso Garibaldi 2. Besides Adolfo Pini, scientist and lecturer in physiology, here lived and worked Renzo Bongiovanni Radice (1899-1970), painter and Adolfo's maternal uncle and key figure in his cultural education and in feeding his interest for the arts. Adolfo Pini wanted the Foundation to be dedicated to his uncle's memory and to aim at promoting and giving value to his artwork through studies and exhibitions, as well as supporting young artists with scholarships, education opportunities and other initiatives. The Foundation is also committed to the promotion of Adolfo Pini's person, who was, besides his scientific endeavours, a writer, a poet, a composer and an art enthusiast, thus being a great example of the perfect synthesis between scientific and humanistic culture. Among the initiatives held by the Foundation are "StorieMilanesi," curated by Rosanna Pavoni, and a cycle of projects dedicated to contemporary art, curated by Adrian Paci.


Press Office
Alessandra de Antonellis
: alessandra.deantonellis [​at​] ddlstudio.net
Laura Cometa: laura.cometa [​at​] ddlstudio.net

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