MODERN TALKING, Museum of Art Cluj-Napoca, Romania

MODERN TALKING group exhibition, Museum of Art Cluj-Napoca, Romania

MODERN TALKING, Museum of Art Cluj-Napoca, Romania
February 15 - April 15, 2012

The Museum of Art in Cluj-Napoca is hosting the group exhibition entitled “Modern Talking”, featuring contemporary artists whose works are challenging the conventions of painting and its legacy. Through the work of the invited artists, the visitor will be able to re-conceptualize the traditional acception of painting, which is no longer restricted to the oil-on-canvas formula, but offers a multitude of other alternatives. Fabric, metal, found objects, conceptual statements, flamboyant actions, installations and sculptures, all of these are putting forward an extended understanding of the medium; today, painting is expanded, painting is overall.

Artists:
Sonia Almeida (PT); Mark Barrow (US); Baldur Geir Bragason (IS); Vittorio Brodmann (CH); Ana Cardoso (PT); Aline Cautis (US); Radu Comşa (RO); Ann Craven (US); Francesca DiMattio (US); Ida Ekblad (NO); Enzo Giordano (IT); Heather Guertin (US); Davíð Örn Halldórsson (IS); Ingunn Fjóla Ingþórsdóttir (IS); Jacob Kassay (US); Gilda Mautone (IT); Florin Maxa (RO); Dan Măciucă (RO); Elizabeth Neel (US); Ylva Ogland (SE); Paloma Presents [Urs Zahn & Roman Gysin] (CH); Zak Prekop (US); Jo Robertson (UK); Małgorzata Szymankiewicz (PL); Patricia Treib (US); Daniel Turner (US); Garth Weiser (US).

Special project by Sarah Ortmeyer (DE).

Organizers: Nicola Trezzi and Daria D. Pervain, in collaboration with Ewa Gorządek, Helena Kontova, and Giancarlo Politi.

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Debra Fleury: Ice, 2011. Dark Stoneware, Porcelain and glass. Fired to cone 6 (neutral atmosphere), (wall installation). Dimensions variable, average size per individual piece is approximately 5 cm x 5 cm x  7 cm

Debra Fleury: Ice, 2011. Dark Stoneware, Porcelain and glass. Fired to cone 6 (neutral atmosphere), (wall installation). Dimensions variable, average size per individual piece is approximately 5 cm x 5 cm x  7 cm

Marianne McGrath: “Maybe we can grow something on top of it all…”, 2010, unfired earthenware, plywood, string, wax, 5’ x 5’ x 5’

Marianne McGrath: “Maybe we can grow something on top of it all…”, 2010, unfired earthenware, plywood, string, wax, 5’ x 5’ x 5’

Marianne McGrath: Thoughts on Long Drives (gallery shot), 2009, porcelain, earthenware, plywood, steel rod, plaster, dimensions variable

Marianne McGrath: Thoughts on Long Drives (gallery shot), 2009, porcelain, earthenware, plywood, steel rod, plaster, dimensions variable

Radu Comsa / Things as they are, SABOT, Cluj-Napoca

Radu Comsa - Things as they are, SABOT, Cluj-Napoca

Radu Comşa / Things as they are, SABOT, Cluj-Napoca, Romania
20 January - 18 February 2012

When Giorgio Vasari wrote the “Life of Artists”, the notion of the authorship was finally acknowledged in the field of visual art. It was being used for quite some time previously, but never before had it been so clearly defined.

Since then, authorship has become more and more connected to branding and marketing, and the trend is going towards a point when they will have become indistinguishable. I don’t mean to demonize these concepts. Yet, we would be blind if we ignored the fact that nowadays artists are compelled to build their own brand, that above everything else they need to nest into a style, which is something familiar, repeated and recognizable. In other words, they have to brand themselves.

The whole notion of the “death of the author” didn’t really damage this status quo. On the contrary, it added strength to the idea of authorship. The artists have thus survived their own artistic death. Still, it is clear that they have simultaneously turned themselves into products of the capitalist society, much like Coca-Cola or the one dollar bill.

Everyday, Radu Comşa is fighting his way out of the aforementioned scenario. His work – or rather his modus operandi, his life style – is continuously contradicting the situation I just described. The fact that he has been working in the city of Cluj - with its cozy little coterie where everybody peeks at each other’s work - didn’t help much.

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Suzanne Stumpf: Nest with Eggs III, 2011, 10”w x 2.5”h, altered wheelthrown with handbuilt components; porcelain and porcelain paperclay; oxidation fired to cone 10
Both nests and eggs hold important concepts for reflection and meditation for me. Eggs represent new beginnings, promise, mystery, and fragility. Nests signify “home,” with the intention of comfort and protection, and in the case of wildlife, camouflage. As an avid birdwatcher, amateur naturalist, and sculptor, I am intrigued by the variety of nests found in nature for both their architectural inspiration and symbolism. These three works are from a series of nest sculptures I am making.

Suzanne Stumpf: Nest with Eggs III, 2011, 10”w x 2.5”h, altered wheelthrown with handbuilt components; porcelain and porcelain paperclay; oxidation fired to cone 10

Both nests and eggs hold important concepts for reflection and meditation for me. Eggs represent new beginnings, promise, mystery, and fragility. Nests signify “home,” with the intention of comfort and protection, and in the case of wildlife, camouflage. As an avid birdwatcher, amateur naturalist, and sculptor, I am intrigued by the variety of nests found in nature for both their architectural inspiration and symbolism. These three works are from a series of nest sculptures I am making.

Suzanne Stumpf: Changeable Views, 2007, 15.5”w x 6”h x 4.5” d (window structure), handbuilt porcelain; reduction fired to cone 10The interactive sculpture Changeable Views is a very modular work—the windows may be left open or up to four of the twelve tiles may be inserted to create many varied views. The tiles have colors on one side and patterns of black and white on the reverse. Although the tiles were lined up flat and adjacent to each other when a number of colored glazes were applied (so technically there is an “order” to the tiles), the tiles “dialogue” and create interest in any number of combinations.Metaphorically, windows offer the opportunities to look outward, inward, more deeply, and in new directions. The interactive play possible in this piece is intended as a meditation for its audience.

Suzanne Stumpf: Changeable Views, 2007, 15.5”w x 6”h x 4.5” d (window structure), handbuilt porcelain; reduction fired to cone 10

The interactive sculpture Changeable Views is a very modular work—the windows may be left open or up to four of the twelve tiles may be inserted to create many varied views. The tiles have colors on one side and patterns of black and white on the reverse. Although the tiles were lined up flat and adjacent to each other when a number of colored glazes were applied (so technically there is an “order” to the tiles), the tiles “dialogue” and create interest in any number of combinations.

Metaphorically, windows offer the opportunities to look outward, inward, more deeply, and in new directions. The interactive play possible in this piece is intended as a meditation for its audience.