Tony Cragg, Jan Fabre e Mimmo Paladino are the protagonists of Intersezioni first edition. They have studied three specific projects inside the Archaeological Park of Scolacium.
If the impressive sculptures of Cragg, charged with a fantastic and at the same time organic monumentality, find their ideal collocation in the Forum- the main square of the settlement of Minervia Scolacium- , Paladino’s archaic and primordial figures match perfectly the Roman Theatre , built between the I and II century A.D. ,while the mysterious and alienating works of Fabre are in perfect metaphorical harmony with the spirituality of the Basilica of Santa Maria della Roccelletta, one of the most significant medieval monuments in Calabria.
The three artists planned their work in connection with the peculiarities of a place so specially rich in evocative power. Cragg has chosen to present a range of works produced between 1999 and 2004,in which a course marked by constant references to the geometrical and organic aspect of the matter is evident. Among the ten big sculptures Cragg has chosen, Wirbelsaule-1999, never shown before- stands out along with Untitled (Red stone) –2000, a 16 tons piece of work that evocates archaic images of a far culture.” Through time things became remains of one’s original culture, bringing in them the memory of the knowledge and the spirit of those who created them”, says Cragg.
With regard to Fabre the Basilica becomes the focal point of his plastic elaboration marked by unceasing metamorphoses. If on top of the Basilica he will place “The man measuring the clouds”, a big bronze sculpture that seems to establish a relation with life beyond this world, the Belgian artist has projected, just for this occasion a new installation ,made with 70 car or lorry engines,3 skulls and stuffed animals. It’ a strongly symbolic work, as Faber explains: “The idea is a fusion between physical and mental energy. The engines represent the physical pulsing energy, while the spiritual energy is represented by the Basilica”.
It’s Palladino who takes possession of the Theatre: for this occasion he has realized a peculiar installation in which the ancient space is animated by silent and disquieting presences, ghosts of a common past: They are “I Dormienti” arranged on the tiers as dumb spectators.
The 15 terracotta statues create an autonomous and suggestive universe in a contest where ancestral bronze carts and purposely made terracotta structures appear.
On top the hill overlooking the theatre, Paladino has decided to place a 5 meters diameter big Shield which synthesizes the mythic and symbolic universe peculiar of his research.
“My works do not create fractures and are part of a time continuum, becoming part of a landscape marked by stratifications and sedimentations, as witnessed by the Park of the Roccelletta itself.” says Paladino.
Tony Cragg, who displayed his works at a big exhibition at the Macro in Rome in 2003, was for the fist time at the Biennale of Venice in 1988. In the same year he won the Turner Prize. Among other places he was present at the Canton Museum in Lugano, at the Modern Art Museum in Tokio, at the Grenoble Museum, at the Tate Britain in Liverpool, and at the Guggenheim in Venice. He will realize the symbol sculpture for the Winter Olympic Games in Turin in 2006.
Jan Fabre was first invited to the Biennale in Venice in 1984. He later took part in Documenta, at the Kunsthalle in Basel and, he has recently made a one-man show at the Contemporary Art Gallery in Bergamo, at the Stedelik museum in Gent and at the Contemporary Art museum in Lion. Fabre is interested in visual art, writing and theatre, and this year he is co-stage manager at the Festival in Avignon.
Mimmo Paladino took first part in the Biennale in Venice in 1988.But we must mention his retrospective at the Lenbachhaus in Munchen ,the exhibitions at the Kunstmuseum in Basel, at the “Galleria d'Arte Moderna” in Bologna and at the Royal Academy in London. We must also mention the big installation “Salt mountain” in Naples, the retrospective at the” Centro d'Arte Contemporanea Luigi Pecci” in Prato in years 2002-2003.Paladino is honorary member of the Royal Academy of London and his works are permanently on show in some of the most important international museums as the Metropolitan Museum in New York. Until July 17 the Loggetta Lombardesca in Ravenna will house his one-man show dealing with his relationship with theatre by the title of ” Mimmo Paladino in Scena”.