Exhibition features many of Favaretto’s most important works to-date, as well as a new works, including a site-specific installation that extends through the galleries
(Long Island City, NY—May 2, 2012) MoMA PS1 presents the first survey of Lara Favaretto (b. 1973, Treviso, Italy), comprising works from the past fifteen years alongside new pieces made specifically for the show, including a new site-specific installation that extends through all of the galleries. The exhibition will also feature the first presentation of the extensive archive of images that the artist has collected as source material and inspiration. Organized by MoMA PS1 Curator Peter Eleey with Curatorial Assistant Matthew Evans, Lara Favaretto: Just Knocked Out is on view at MoMA PS1 May 3 – September 10, 2012 and is co-organized with Sharjah Art Foundation, where it will be on view December 2012 – February 2013.
The playful, celebratory visual language of Favaretto’s art can be misleading.
Despite her work’s evident humor, a tragic undercurrent runs throughout her practice. Numerous pieces are subjected to forces of decay, consumption and obsolescence, and gradually decompose or exhaust themselves. Though Favaretto represents the eventuality of loss, she also resists it, reusing discarded construction materials, recuperating old paintings and lost luggage, and recycling elements from her previous installations as new works.
An ongoing series of temporary interventions that the artist calls “momentary monuments” engages specifically with cultural memory, loosely adopting but subverting the vernacular of civic sculpture. Beginning with a swamp that she created in Venice to commemorate twenty historical figures who have disappeared, Favaretto also sandbagged a 1896 statue of Dante Alighieri in a public square in Trento, drawing attention to the futility and impermanence of memorials in general.
In a similar spirit, the artist presents for the first time the extensive archive of images that she has collected as source material and inspiration, dispersed within a library of abandoned books.
Much of Favaretto’s work alludes to the casualties of modern life, often referring to the body and the natural environment through mechanical and industrial forms that change and degrade. Automated car wash brushes whirl repeatedly, wearing themselves down against metal plates; a platoon of compressed air tanks randomly empties itself, blowing silent party favors in a weak salute; fans constantly recompose a landscape of confetti. These animist machines celebrate their absurdity, taking on lives of their own.
Lara Favaretto: Just Knocked Out provides the most complete overview of Favaretto’s work to date, but is not conceived as a conventional survey. The artist has created a number of new pieces for this presentation, including a site-specific installation that extends through all of the galleries. Taking a painting by the pioneering Dutch abstractionist Piet Mondrian (1872-1944) as inspiration, Favaretto has constructed a grid of scaffolding pipes overhead that recalls the urban geometry of New York, dictating the location of certain pieces while intersecting and interrupting the placement of others. In both of her installations and individual works, Favaretto repeatedly reminds us of the choices we make, and of those that are made for us. Balanced between aspiration and failure, she enacts a conflicted kind of freedom, an illusion of autonomy and control where finally neither may exist.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Lara Favaretto (b. Treviso, 1973) lives and works in Turin, Italy. Favaretto was a participant in MoMA PS1’s international studio program in 2002-03, and over the subsequent decade she has been featured in solo and group shows at Castello di Rivoli Museo d’Arte Contemporanea, Rivoli; Aspen Art Museum; Museo MADRE, Naples; Tramway, Glasgow; Fondazione Galleria Civica di Trento; GAMEC, Bergamo; and MOCA, Los Angeles. Additionally, her work was included in the 12th Istanbul Biennial, the 53rd Venice Biennale, the 9th Sharjah Biennial, and the 16th Sydney Biennial, and will be featured in Documenta 13 opening in June in Kassel.
ABOUT THE EXHIBITION
Lara Favaretto: Just Knocked Out is co-organized by MoMA PS1 and Sharjah Art
The exhibition is supported in part by The Contemporary Arts Council of The Museum
of Modern Art and The International Council of The Museum of Modern Art.
An artist’s book will be published following the exhibition.
Position the cursor on the images to view captions, click on images to enlarge them.
Posizionare il cursore sulle immagini per leggere le didascalie; cliccare sulle immagini per ingrandirle.
MoMA PS1 is open from 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., Thursday through Monday.
MoMA PS1 is located at 22-25 Jackson Avenue at 46th Avenue in Long Island City, Queens, across the Queensboro Bridge from midtown Manhattan. It is easily accessible by bus and subway. Traveling by subway, visitors should take either the E or M to Court Square-23 Street; the 7 to 45 Road-Courthouse Square; or the G to Court Square or 21 Street-Van Alst. Visitors may also take the Q67 bus to Jackson and 46th Avenues or the B62 to 46th Avenue.