Galleria Civica di Modena

Adrian Paci, “The Princess”, 2003, photograph

May 11, 2006

14th May -16th July 2006

Curated by Angela Vettese

Galleria Civica di Modena
Palazzo Santa Margherita, Canalgrande 103,
Modena (Italy)

wednesday-friday 10.30/13 16/20,
saturday, sunday and holidays 10.30/19
closed on monday and tuesday
info tel 39 059 203 2919/2940

galcivmo [​at​]

We may be nomads out of necessity, vocation or simply by chance. As often as not, it is our fate that decides all this for us and shows us the way to take. Yet whatever path each one of us takes, the abandonment of our own roots pursues us as we travel around the world, weighing us down with pain and nostalgia despite the enthusiasm of the new, these feelings piled onto an uncertain existence, one in which we do not know that which awaits us, these feelings resurfacing through memory and through storytelling. The theme of emigration, and along with it that of memory, forms the basis of exhibition dedicated to the Albanian artist Adrian Paci, here with his first anthological one-man show in a public space on Italian soil. The one-man show comes in the light of his recent recognition at the 51st Venice Biennial as well as numerous other international acknowledgements, including his exhibition at the PS1 in New York and the presentation of his work at the New York Museum of Modern Art.

The Sala Grande and the Sale Nuove in Palazzo Santa Margherita will house the exhibition from Sunday 14th May 12pm, featuring installations, self-portrait sculptures, photographs, videos and paintings: a range of techniques denoting an eclectic range of skills. Raised in the Albanian Socialist schools of realism, the artist has a painters hand which he often rejects in favour of other ways of storytelling. The exhibition, organised and produced by the Galleria Civica di Modena together with the Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Modena, is curated by Angela Vettese.

Born in Albania in 1969, Adrian Paci currently lives and works in Milan. His classical training allowed him to extract magnificent paintings from his own wedding video painted in a realist style, as well as letting him come to grips with photography, sculpture, video and numerous other techniques, demonstrating that as a general rule, technique is not a reliable measure of whether art is any good or not. This entails a great freedom of expression which may also be turned into a loss, for the artist can no longer count on the comfort derived from knowing what to do and why. Nothing may be said without doubt not to be art: even a fake death certificate has been defined as such before now. Thus the artist has no theoretical space to occupy; he is forced to be a nomad of the concept, the condition that underlines and strengthens the very sense of life due to which Paci an Albanian emigrant is also a runaway from his own land. The loss of his homeland, with the sense of mourning and uncertainty that that entails with regard to the new sets of rules to be learnt by heart and respected, gives rise to similar feelings in day to day life just as in his concept of art.

This nomadic state which from the personal sphere spills over into that of the artistic discipline and vice versa, finds its most synthetic and effective expression in that series of images in which Paci appears with a roof hoisted up onto his shoulders: a set of photographs and a resin sculpture tracing the body of the artist. Abandoning that which is dearest to us is a sacrifice that we are often asked to make, just as God asked Abraham in the Bible to kill that which was dearest to him in the world: his son Isaac. However, in real life, our hand is not stopped by a divine and charitable hand. We kill off our certainties only to embrace our doubts; we leave the beaten path to unearth new and arduous tracks; we deprive ourselves of our homelands, of our loved ones and of our most deeply-seated notions because some strange need pushes us to do so.

That which Adrian Paci tells as he goes beyond his own individual case and reaches out to embrace a universal condition of contemporary man is this: there is an unstoppable impulse to change place, context, language, notion of art and more besides, with a gesture supported by a sense of faith yet without any certain compensation.

At the same time, the Galleria Civica di Modena presents at the Palazzina dei Giardini in corso Canalgrande, a one man show dedicated to Piero Gilardi. The exhibition Piero Gilardi. Interdipendenze has two main goals: first of all, to present the artists new project to the public, the extraordinary Parco dArte Vivente which is about to open in Turin; secondly, to highlight the ongoing element that runs through some 40 years of artistic research: the ability to use the work of art as a means by wich to generate human relationships.

Galleria Civica di Modena
May 11, 2006

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