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Sculpture and its Vision

Picture of Costantin Brancusi in his studio Picture of Costantin Brancusi in his studio (detail)

Simone Menegoi and Francesco Stocchi in conversation.
Introduced by Stefania Frezzotti

April 30th, 2014 at 17:30
Sala del Mito, Galleria nazionale d’arte moderna, viale delle Belle Arti 131, Rome

Wednesday April 30 at 5.30 pm, the Galleria nazionale d’arte moderna e contemporanea, Rome, hosts the conference Sculpture and its Vision, part of Nomas Foundation’s public program in the frame of To continue. Notes towards a Sculpture Cycle: Vision, curated by Cecilia Canziani and Ilaria Gianni with the collaboration of Michela Tornielli and Stefano Vittorini.
Introduced by Stefania Frezzotti (curator at the GNAM), who will present the theme in relationship to the museum’s collection, the curators and art critics Simone Menegoi and Francesco Stocchi will address the relationship between photography and sculpture in modern and contemporary art production.
The exhibitions The Camera's Blind Spot (MAN, Nuoro, 2013) curated by Simone Menegoi and Brancusi, Rosso, Man Ray. Framing Sculpture (Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam, 2014) curated by Francesco Stocchi, have marked the recent debate on representation and on the shift of the point of view in the vision of sculpture. The conference aims at examining the discussion on the evolution and on the transformation of the photographic gaze on the sculptural object. The medium has modified its function from documentary to creative, researching form and consequently repositioning the object. The image has become matter, transforming the two dimensional character of photography in a proper and actual three-dimensional shape.
Pursuing Nomas Foundation’s investigation on visual art’s languages, the conference represents a moment of in-depth analysis of the cycle To continue. Notes towards a Sculpture Cycle, a research-based project, in three chapters, inspired by a core group of works from the Foundation’s collection, which focuses on sculpture.
Visions, the second chapter of To continue. Notes towards a Sculpture Cycle, offers a reading of sculpture through an investigation on the relationship between gaze and object, able to convey the narrative drive that sculpture has retained through centuries. The exhibition explores the way in which the act of looking at the sculptural subject is consequently reshaped into an object per se, as well as addressing the conditions of perception of a work.
The research on the representation of sculpture, the way in which it is filtered by the lens of a camera, the different perception of the subjects and of its details through direct experience, and the construction of an imagery, are all issues inherent the exhibition. The works on show highlight how photography and film have been able to transfigure in sculpture and how the latter can become image, underlining the way in which an art work takes form, is conveyed and how its perception is constantly evolving.

The parallel public program to the exhibition will present a second conference at the Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna, involving Davide Servadei (Ceramiche Gatti, Faenza), Luisa Gardini (artist), Luigi Ontani (artist), which will address the relationship between art and craft; a guided tour through Rome’s cinemas, lead by artist Anna Franceschini; and a visit at Luigi Ontani’s studio.

Simone Menegoi is a writer and contemporary art curator. Along with Cecilia Canziani he conceived and curated ZegnArt Public, a program of commissions and residencies for public art, supported by the group Ermenegildo Zegna. He is a regular contributor to the column Critic’s Picks on
From 1997 to 2003 he worked primarily as a journalist. He was the editor of Tema Celeste and the Giornale dell’Arte, wrote for numerous art and design magazines, and worked for two years with Corriere della Sera. He also wrote the column “Focus” for Mousse magazine (2006-08) and the column “Pioneers” in the magazine, Kaleidoscope (2009-12), both of which were dedicated to unknown or forgotten artists of the ‘60s and ‘70s. Since 2005, Simone Menegoi has curated exhibitions in private and public spaces in Italy and abroad. Among the most recent, LE SILENCE. Une fiction, Nouveau Musée National de Monaco, Monaco, 2012; Bouvard and Pecuchet's Compendious Quest for Beauty, David Roberts Art Foundation, London (co-curated with Chris Sharp), 2012; The Camera’s Blind Spot. Scultura / fotografia: esempi recenti, MAN, Nuoro, 2013; Le statue calde. Scultura - corpo - azione, 1945-2013, Museo Marino Marini, Florence, 2014; Michael E. Smith, Triennale di Milano, 2014 (co-curated with Alexis Vaillant). He has written critical texts on a variety of artists which have appeared in publications of various international institutions, among which Tel Aviv Art Museum, CIAP Île de Vassivière, Ludwig Museum (Budapest), New Museum (New York), Fondazione Galleria Civica di Trento in collaboration with SalzburgerKunstverein and Villa Arson (Nice), Kunstforum Ludwig, Aachen.

Francesco Stocchi is curator of modern and contemporay art the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. His latest exhibitions are Framing Sculpture – Brancusi, Rosso, Man Ray, on the relationship between sculpture and representation, and Minimal Myth, which analyzes Minimalism’s influence on contemporary production. He sits on the advisory board of the collection Lenikus in Vienna for whom he manages the artist residency program.
Founder of the magazine AGMA, a quarterly image based publication dedicated to exhibition making, he has collaborated with Artforum for ten years. He regularly contributes to various publications and his latest essays are “Medardo Rosso – The Shape of Light” in the catalogue Framing Sculpture – Brancusi, Rosso, Man Ray, and “Every critical act is a creative act” in the catalogue When AttitudesBbecome Form Bern 1969-Venice 2013. He recently published the book Francesca Woodman Photographs 1978-1981.