The New Frontiers of Painting is the first major international exhibition produced in Italy to focus solely on new trends in contemporary figurative painting. “Despite the crucial role played by figurative painting on the current artistic horizon, and despite its ability to communicate the spirit of our times no less adroitly than other expressive forms”, notes Demetrio Paparoni, the curator and one of Italy’s leading art critics. “Major exhibitions tend to minimize its impact, generally preferring to include a limited number of figurative paintings, diluted within a multi-disciplinary context that tends to dampen its impact”.
The New Frontiers of Painting presents the public with works by Francis Alÿs, Michaël Borremans, Kevin Cosgrove, Jules de Balincourt, Lars Elling, Inka Essenhigh, Laurent Grasso, Li Songsong, Liu Xiaodong, Victor Man, Margherita Manzelli, Rafael Megall, Justin Mortimer, Paulina Olowska, Alessandro Pessoli, Daniel Pitín, Pietro Roccasalva, Nicola Samorì, Wilhelm Sasnal, Markus Schinwald, David Schnell, Dana Schutz, Vibeke Slyngstad, Anj Smith, Nguyê˜n Thái Tuâ'n, Natee Utarit, Ronald Ventura, Nicola Verlato, Sophie von Hellermann, Ruprecht von Kaufmann, Wang Guangyi, Matthias Weischer, Yue Minjun, Zhang Huan.
The peculiarity of the exhibition lies in the fact that it presents only figurative paintings of artists born from 1960 onwards who live in different parts of the world. Almost all paintings are large size and comes mostly from artists consolidated on the international scene. Gathering them under one roof shows that painting is a language that still has a lot to say and this contrasts with the orientation of the large international exhibitions. The project tends to highlight the incidence that painting has in the artistic landscape of the last decades and the stylistic-contentual turning point in the new millennium.
“The exhibition highlights the role that Fondazione Stelline plays in the international artistic debate”, says Foundation chairwoman PierCarla Delpiano, “and the focus it has always placed on the most important creative expressions of our time”.
A catalogue, edited by Skira (€29), is published for this event. In addition to an introductory essay by the curator, and reproductions of the works on display, it includes critical and explanatory texts on the art, and on the artists, by Maria Cannarella, Pia Capelli, Elena Di Raddo, Alessandra Klimciuk, Tone Lyngstad Nyaas, Gianni Mercurio, Rischa Paterlini, Giulia Pra Floriani, Lorenzo Respi, Sabina Spada, Luigi Spagnol, Alberto Zanchetta, and Giacomo Zaza.
• ABOUT THE CURATOR
Demetrio Paparoni was born in 1954 in Syracuse, Italy. He lives in Milan. An art critic and curator, he founded the contemporary art magazine “Tema Celeste” in 1983, as well as a publishing house by the same name, which he ran until 2000. He has written a number of books and essays, including those on Jonathan Lasker (2002), Chuck Close, (2002), and Wang Guangyi (2013). His book entitled “Il bello, il buono e il cattivo” (“The Good, the Bad, the Beautiful”, Ponte alle Grazie, Milan 2014) is an exhaustive study on how politics have conditioned art over the last one hundred years. In 2017 he wrote “The Devil,” published by 24 Ore Cultura.
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