MILANO - Pirelli Hangar Biccoca - Fondazione Prada

Visit of the two amazing foundation for contemporary art of Milano, the Hangar Pirelli do Biccoca and Prada's fondazione. Both impressive architecture and collection.

Pirelli HangarBicocca - Pirelli HangarBicocca is a non-profit foundation, established in 2004, which has converted a former industrial plant in Milan into an institution for producing and promoting contemporary art. This dynamic center for experimentation and discovery covers 15,000 square meters, making it one of the largest contiguous exhibition spaces in Europe. It presents major solo shows every year by Italian and international artists, with each project conceived to work in close relation to the architecture of the complex, and explored in depth through a calendar of parallel events. Admission to the space and the shows is completely free of charge, and facilitators are on hand to help the public connect with the art. Since 2013, Vicente Todolí has been the foundation’s Artistic Director.

The complex, which once housed a locomotive factory, includes an area for public services and educational activities, and three exhibition spaces whose original twentieth-century architectural features have been left clearly visible: Shed, Navate, and Cubo. As well as its exhibitions program and cultural events, Pirelli HangarBicocca also permanently houses one of Anselm Kiefer’s most important site-specific works, The Seven Heavenly Palaces 2004-2015, commissioned for the opening of Pirelli HangarBicocca.

Pirelli HangarBicocca presents “Doubt”Carsten Höller’s solo exhibition. The German artist has risen to the fore of the international scene for his penetrating inquiry into the nature of human experience. The exhibition, curated by Vicente Todolí, unfolds along twinned, parallel paths, demanding sensory participation and perceptual focus on part of the viewers. The visitors themselves can choose how to approach the exhibition and which path to take.

On 25 September 2015 Pirelli HangarBicocca unveiled the new installation by Anselm Kiefer: the new display, curated by Vicente Todolí, is an expansion of The Seven Heavenly Palaces, the permanent work conceived for the opening of Pirelli HangarBicocca in 2004 and based on a project by Lia Rumma.

Together with the seven “towers” – now open for the public to walk through – five large-format paintings, made between 2009 and 2013 but never shown until now, will form a single installation entitled The Seven Heavenly Palaces 2004-2015. Five large paintings are on show in the space of the “Navate” that contain The Seven Heavenly Palaces, adding to the permanent installation and giving new meaning to Anselm Kiefer’s masterpiece. The paintings are Jaipur (2009); two works of the series entitled Cette obscure clarté qui tombe des étoiles (2011); Alchemie (2012) and Die deutsche Heilslinie(2012-2013). Using the language of painting, these works make reference to some of the themes already present in The Seven Heavenly Palaces, including the great architectural constructions of the past viewed as an attempt by man to ascend to the divine, with the constellations represented by means of astronomical numbering. They also add a number of considerations that are key to the artist’s poetic vision, including the relationship between man and nature, and references to the history of ideas and of Western philosophy.

Fondazione Prada - The new Milan venue of Fondazione Prada, conceived by architecture firm OMA—led by Rem Koolhaas—expands the repertoire of spatial typologies in which art can be exhibited and shared with the public. Characterized by an articulated architectural configuration which combines seven existing buildings with three new structures (Podium, Cinema and Torre), the new venue is the result of the transformation of a distillery dating back to the 1910’s.

In the project conceived by OMA, two conditions coexist: preservation and the creation of a new architecture which, although separate, confront each other in a state of permanent interaction.

Located in Largo Isarco, in the south of Milan, the compound develops on an overall surface of 19.000 m2/205,000 ft2.

Torre (tower), currently undergoing construction work, will be open to the public at a later stage.

As stated by Rem Koolhaas: “The Fondazione is not a preservation project and not a new architecture. Two conditions that are usually kept separate here confront each other in a state of permanent interaction–offering an ensemble of fragments that will not congeal into a single image, or allow any part to dominate the others.

New, old, horizontal, vertical, wide, narrow, white, black, open, enclosed – all these contrasts establish the range of oppositions that define the new Fondazione. By introducing so many spatial variables, the complexity of the architecture will promote an unstable, open programming, where art and architecture will benefit from each other’s challenges”.

Like the whole Fondazione Prada site, the Haunted House is part of a former distillery complex dating back to the 1910s.Fondazione Prada is presenting “Kienholz: Five Car Stud,” open to the public in Milan from 19 May through 31 December 2016 and curated by Germano Celant. The exhibition brings together a selection of artworks realized between 1959 to 1994 by Edward Kienholz and Nancy Reddin Kienholz, including the well-known installation that gives the show its title.

Its secluded environments host a permanent installation conceived by Robert Gober (1954) and two works by Louise Bourgeois (1911–2010).
On the higher floors of the building, Gober, whose work explores sexuality, relationships, nature, politics, and religion, combines historical art works such as Untitled (1993–1994), an oversize Farina box on display on the second floor, with new ones such as Original Model for Top Floor of the Haunted House (2014). By using everyday elements the artist creates hybrid objects: Arms and Legs Wallpaper (1995–2015) refers to a recurring pattern within the artist’s practice, while portions of architecture— such as Corner Door and Doorframe (2014–2015) or the bronze drain Untitled (2014–2015)—are here dislocated and therefore estranged, despite containing elements familiar to everybody.

On the first floor, Gober’s works, which reverberate connections to childhood and to body parts, find a counterpart in Louise Bourgeois’s Cell (Clothes) (1996)—a circular construction made of adjoining doors and treated iron gates, peopled by sculptures combined together with personal objects originally belonging to Bourgeois herself—and Single III (1996), a fabric sculpture.Fondazione Prada is presenting “Kienholz: Five Car Stud,” open to the public in Milan from 19 May through 31 December 2016 and curated by Germano Celant. The exhibition brings together a selection of artworks realized between 1959 to 1994 by Edward Kienholz and Nancy Reddin Kienholz, including the well-known installation that gives the show its title.
Five Car Stud was created by Edward Kienholz from 1969 to 1972, and first exhibited at documenta 5 in Kassel, curated by Harald Szeemann
A life-sized reproduction of a scene of racial violence, Five Car Stud is considered one of the American artist’s most significant works. Despite the controversy and attention that it earned from critics right from its debut, the piece remained hidden from view in the storage of a Japanese collector for almost forty years. The artwork was only presented once again to the viewing public in 2011 and 2012 following restoration, first at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and then at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark. Today the artwork is part of the Prada Collection, and is being shown for the first time ever in Italy, where it forms the central nucleus of an exhibition path that runs from the Sud gallery to the Deposito, and extends into an external space, presenting 25 artworks including sculpture, assemblages and tableaux realized by the Kienholzes from 1959 to 1994, as well as documentation material on the history and making of Five Car Stud.

Five Car Stud catapults the viewer into a nightmarish situation, immersing him and her in a dimension – either removed or forgotten – of extreme violence. More than forty years after it was first created, the artwork’s expressive force, its powerful symbolic charge and the lucidity of the accusation against racial persecution retain their original strength.“L’image volée” (The stolen image) is a group show curated by artist Thomas Demand, open to the public from 18 March to 21 August 2016. Within an exhibition architecture designed by sculptor Manfred Pernice, the show occupies both levels of the Nord gallery at Fondazione Prada in Milan.
“L’image volée,” includes more than 90 works produced by over 60 artists from 1820 through the present day. Demand’s idea for the exhibition is to explore the way we all rely on pre-existing models, and how artists have always referred to existing imagery to make their own. Questioning the boundaries between originality, conceptual inventiveness and the culture of the copy, the project focuses on theft, authorship, annexation and the creative potential of such pursuits.
In 2006, in order to realize the photographic work Grotto, Thomas Demand used a postcard as his starting point in recreating a grotto located on the island Maiorca. Employing 30 tons of grey cardboard, shaped with the help of a computer and laid out to form a stratification with 900,000 sections, the artist recreated the rock chamber, stalactites and stalagmites displayed on the postcard in order to photograph the work.
For the opening of Fondazione Prada’s new venue, this grotto motif returns as Processo grottesco (Grotesque Process), for which Demand sets documentary materials including postcards, books, tour guides, catalogue illustrations, various advertisements and the massive reconstruction of the Spanish grotto alongside the photograph Grotto. In this manner, the artist allows visitors to explore the creative process that led to the realization of the photograph, opening a window onto the way the artwork has been transformed over the course of time through continuous investigation. The grotto theme is a recurring subject in the history of art and architecture, and implies a provocative, bizarre approach, typical of painting techniques of the 1500s known as ‘grottesca’ (grotesque). 
One of the characteristic elements of Processo grottesco is the use of virtual computer technology, which Demand employed for the first time ever to cut, following a 3D model, the various layers of cardboard used to create the three dimensional reconstruction. In this permanent installation, the use of a highly technological instrument makes it possible to imitate, thanks to its accelerated deciphering, natural stratifications that have developed incredibly slowly over a long time. 
The ‘grotesque process’ is animated by a contrast that informs Demand’s representation of reality, as the artist is in turn inspired by a real place that is ultimately revealed as an ‘unreal’, perhaps even surreal, space thanks to its subterranean, mysterious and disturbing connotations, exalted in this definitive installation on the underground level of Fondazione Prada’s cinema.