Exhibition Upcoming – NAVATE

10 October 2024 - 2 February 2025

Jean Tinguely

Curated by Camille Morineau, Lucia Pesapane and Vicente Todolí with Fiammetta Griccioli

Jean Tinguely (Fribourg, 1925 – Berne 1991) is considered one of the greatest pioneers of 20th-century art who radically changed the concept of the artwork itself, and one of the foremost exponents of kinetic art. His work focuses on the exploration of the machine, its function and movement, its noises and sounds, and its inherent poetry. Tinguely was one of the first artists to incorporate found objects, gears, and other materials into his work, welding them together to create noisy, cacophonous machines powered by real en­gines. His sculptures also have a performa­tive quality due to their constant movement and peculiar ability to involve the audience. Gears, especially wheels, are often the basic elements of his works, in which the artist de­liberately disrupts their traditional functions. Tinguely liberates the machine from the tyr­anny of utility by promoting the unexpected and ephemeral in his absurd, seemingly com­ical contraptions.

The exhibition at Pirelli HangarBicocca is the most extensive survey in Italy since the artistʼs death, and will include more than thirty seminal works from the 1950s to the 1980s, occupying nearly the entire 5000 sqm space. The last major tribute to Jean Tinguely in an Italian institution took place in 1987 with the exhi­bition “Una magia più forte della morte” (A magic Stronger than Death) at Pala­zzo Grassi in Venice, curated by Pontus Hultén. The new Milan exhibition proj­ect is closely tied to the original industrial purpose of the Pirelli HangarBicocca building. The show will be the occasion to reflect on the artist’s idea of museum and the “anti-museum,” and at the same time it will recall his workshop-factory in La Verrerie in canton Fribourg: the result will be a sonic and visual scenery of monumental kinetic works, where colorful musical installations will be juxtaposed with, cacophonous machines. This retrospective exhibition will also be an opportunity to recall Jean Tinguelyʼs close relationship with Milan, which was the focus of some of his most ambitious projects, such as La Vittoria (1970), an iconic performance that took place in Piazza Duomo. The exhibition is realized in collaboration with Museum Tinguely, Basel.

Some of the most prominent international institutions have host­ed solo exhibitions of Tinguely, including Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf (2016); Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (2016, 1984, 1973); Centro Cultural Borges, Buenos Aires (2012); Henie Onstad Art Centre, Oslo (2009); Institut Valencià d’Art Modern (2008); Kunst Haus Wien (2008, 1991); Kunsthal Rotterdam (2007); Stadtgalerie Kla­genfurt, Klagenfurt am Wörthersee, Austria (2003); Städtische Kunsthalle, Mannheim, Germany (2002); Musée Picasso, Antibes (1999); Museum für Kunst und Geschichte, Fribourg (1991); Cen­tral House of the Artist, Moscow (1990); Centre Pompidou, Paris (1988); Palazzo Grassi, Venice (1987); Louisiana Museum, Humle­baek, Denmark (1986, 1973, 1961); Museum of Modern art of Shi­ga, Japan (1984); Musée Rath, Geneva (1983); Palais des Beaux-Arts, Brussels, Tate Gallery, London, Kunsthaus, Zürich (1982); Wilhelm Lehmbruck Museum, Duisburg, Germany (1978); Kun­stmuseum Basel (1976, 1972); Museum of Modern Art, New York (1975, 1961); Moderna Museet, Stockholm (1972, 1966); Centre National d’Art Contemporain, Paris (1971); Museum of Contem­porary Art, Chicago (1968); Dayton Art Institute, Ohio (1966); The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (1965); Kunsthalle, Baden-Baden, Germany (1964).
The artist’s works have also been included in numerous group exhibitions and international events, such as the Biennale de la sculpture, Yonne, France (1991); Biennale Monumenta, Middelheim, Antwerp (1987); Biennale de Paris (1982); documenta, Kassel (1968); Expo — International and Universal Exposition, Montréal (1967); Expo — Exposition Nationale Suisse, Lausanne (1964); Venice Biennial (1964); Salon de Mai, Musée d’Art Mod­erne de la Ville de Paris (1966, 1964).

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