Artists Matan Ashkenazy, Ruth Beraha, Jonny Briggs, Paolo Ciregia, Tom Lovelace, Giulia Maiorano, Michael Rakowitz and Cristiano Tassinari
Venue Ncontemporary, Milano
All images Courtesy by the artists and Ncontemporary
In “Point Conversion” the American artist transforms a synthetic grass football field (Astroturf) into an Islamic prayer rug, taking inspiration from the possibility existing in the religion of using public spaces as places of prayer, if necessary. The issue of the need to adapt in the face of major natural events and the direct reference to the impact of emergencies on sport and religion seem to be in great harmony with the present.
In “Stratum” Matan Ashkenazy portrays in a series of silver gelatin prints the moment of cleaning the facade of the Bank of England building, an example of 19th century neoclassical architecture designed by Sir John Soane. The cleaning of the facade, therefore, becomes a symbol of historical stratification, but also of the attempt to raise and maintain the image and grandeur of economic and financial organizations in the face of chaos. Paolo Ciregia instead presents the only new work on display. During the first phase of the lockdown, the artist questioned the immoderate race toward digital as a reaction to the lack of the opportunity to physically enjoy art and relationships. In a series of postal exchanges, Ciregia recorded the movement of parcels between Viareggio, where he quarantined, and Milan, where he lives and works permanently. The result are soundtracks from logistics in Italy, concrete remains of the Italian quarantine, memories of the need for physicality in artistic research.
The exhibited works take on a dimension that allows us to broaden our gaze and observe how a traumatic event becomes part of the dynamics of transformation, from a physical, social, political, emotional, and economic point of view. In a very fragmented and heterogeneous way, Secondo Tempo indicates that urgency that drives us to search for a new balance. Representative in this sense is also the series “In preparation” by Tom Lovelace: performative fragments inspired by the condition of the search for stability, personal rather than social.