March 14, 2008 - Fondazione Bevilacqua La Masa - Maja Bajevic
March 14, 2008

Maja Bajevic

Maja Bajevic
18.03 – 27.04.2008
Opening: 18.03, 12.30 am

Fondazione Bevilacqua La Masa
palazzetto Tito, Dorsoduro 2826
31023 Venezia

www.bevilacqualamasa.it

Maja Bajevic holds her first solo exhibition in a public venue in Italy, the Fondazione Bevilacqua La Masa of Venice, together with the publication of the first complete monograph on her work (published by Charta, Milan, edited by Angela Vettese).

The artist lives between her native Sarajevo, Paris and Berlin, and emerged on the international stage thanks to her participation in events such as Manifesta, the Istanbul Biennial, and the Documenta in Kassel. She has gained prestigious forms of recognition, as demonstrated by her DAAD residency in Berlin.

The exhibition takes place in the sombre yet domestic environment of Palazzetto Tito, a venue chosen in the past by artists such as Marlene Dumas, Karen Kilimnik and Richard Hamilton by virtue of the original features of its lancet windows and its antique wooden flooring.

The visitors enter this typically Venetian house to find themselves immediately imprisoned in a room filled with a net of barbed wire. A number of women who normally work for the BLM use this grid as a frame, covering the most dangerous parts of the installation with woollen yarn. ‘Repetitio est mater studiorum’ is the title of this installation/performance, referring also to the professorship that the artist has held for the last three years at the IUAV University of Venice. The piece is part of a series of works entitled “Women at work”, in which Maja Bajevic asked women from specific places (Sarajevo, Istanbul, Barcelona) to work for her and use their feminine manual skills as a form of protection against the aggressiveness of our era, as well as being a way in which to keep their historical memory alive. In the other rooms, which may be reached by braving the wire found in the first room, visitors may view the videos of three other works from the same series: “Women at Work – Under Construction”, “Women at Work – The Observers”, “Women at Work – Washing Up”, as well as photographs from the series entitled “Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year”. The following room includes a reference to the performance “En attendant”: set in a field of clay ground full of earthworms; there are also a series of hand-written sentences scrawled on a wall saying, “Sometimes I think I don’t know anything. And I feel better. And I think I could go away, somewhere, run away – why not? “. In the last room there is a monitor showing “Here’s to Looking at You, Kid”: the face of the artist seems to weep black clay, like a clown who, once the makeup has been removed, loses his sense of happiness and shows us his real sense
of desperation.

Imprisonment, feminine knowledge, the difficulties of sharing but also of bearing solitude and all other forms of constriction: these are the themes that emerge from the works, from the very first, an original performance which will then become an installation, to the others, which bring together the last 10 years of the artist’s work. The end result is an exhibition of great emotional power, one which speaks to us of an individual condition as well as reflecting a collective state of mind and a vertiginous historical condition.

Press Office: press@bevilacqualamasa.it ; www.bevilacqualamasa.it ; T.0039.041.5207797
Studio Pesci: www.studiopesci.it

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