CURA.

UGO RONDINONE
A WALL. A DOOR. A TREE. A LIGHTBULB. WINTER 

Sørlandets Kunstmuseum, Kristiansand
15 January – 11 April, 2021

Share on:
Facebook
Twitter

Press release

Ugo Rondinone’s wide-ranging practice utilizes metaphoric and iconographic images such as clouds, animals and figures, as well as powerful declarative sayings. His work is often founded on themes and motifs from our everyday surroundings (light bulbs, masks, trees, etc.) that acquire a poetic dimension by being isolated, repeated or given specific material treatments. With respect to their form, his installations contain diverse references found within the history of art and popular culture.

A well-known recent work in this respective is «Seven Magic Mountains» placed in the expansive desert-lands of Nevada, USA. The installation is comprised of playfully stacked rocks coated in a special highly artificial-looking coat of weather resilient day-glo paint. Imagine all hues of the rainbow paired with more subdued blacks and greys. Ugo noted the connection between these natural stones and their applied «new exterior» shapes a continuum ‘between human and nature, artificial and natural, then and now.

The contrast between the works shown at SKMU could not be higher nor more intentional. The exhibition will feature four selected large-scale works, that underline another important element to Rondinone’s work: understatement. These naturally crafted objects, that exist on their own, without applied narrative, exist as bare poetic objects free for the onlooker to discover. The work «All Absolute Abyss» forms the leitmotif to this showing, an oversized wooden (portal), crafted with sturdy applied hardware and enamel. The door summons and beckons us; are we inside, what lies beyond, is it open, ajar or firmly shut.

Together with the other works shown here; questions of belonging, of space, of nature, of interior and exterior, of fantasy, of desire and togetherness are evoked. The quiet room transports the onlooker into a secluded space, free from distracting societal noise and torrential (digital) information. Instead, we are allowed to be silent. The works simply exist as they are, made with wonderful attention to detail, allowing the audience to experience them in their own respective ways. This rather melancholic world ensures that the boundaries between reality and dreamworld fade. What remains is a deeply personal suspension of time. The rest is darkness.

1/4
Installation view, Ugo Rondinone, a wall. a door. a tree. a lightbulb. winter, Sørlandets Kunstmuseum, 2021. Photo: courtesy of Sørlandets Kunstmuseum 
2/4
Installation view, Ugo Rondinone, a wall. a door. a tree. a lightbulb. winter, Sørlandets Kunstmuseum, 2021. Photo: courtesy of Sørlandets Kunstmuseum 
3/4
Installation view, Ugo Rondinone, a wall. a door. a tree. a lightbulb. winter, Sørlandets Kunstmuseum, 2021. Photo: courtesy of Sørlandets Kunstmuseum 
4/4
Installation view, Ugo Rondinone, a wall. a door. a tree. a lightbulb. winter, Sørlandets Kunstmuseum, 2021. Photo: courtesy of Sørlandets Kunstmuseum 

Featured image: Installation view, Ugo Rondinone, a wall. a door. a tree. a lightbulb. winter, Sørlandets Kunstmuseum, 2021. Photo: courtesy of Sørlandets Kunstmuseum 

OTHER TIPS
Digital Mourning, curated by Roberta Tenconi, is the first major solo exhibition devoted to Neïl Beloufa in an Italian institution, and it stems from a reflection on the current times and on the concept of life in our digital world. Right from the title, the exhibition alludes to one of the most striking paradoxes of contemporary society, which is the existence in a technological world and its parallel disappearance. Pirelli HangarBicocca, Milan
Clima Gallery, Milan
The Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin
CRAC Occitanie/Pyrénées-Méditerranée, Sète
MAXXI, Rome
Eugster || Belgrade, Belgrade
Istituto Svizzero, Rome
Tanya Leighton, Berlin