Sanguine. Luc Tuymans on Baroque can be seen at Fondazione Prada in Milan, until 25th February 2009.
Curated by Belgian painter Luc Tuymans, and originally conceived for the MKHA in Antwerp, the exhibition showcases more than 80 works by 63 international artists, including 25 exhibited exclusively at Fondazione Prada.
Luc Tuymans showcases contemporary works and Old Masters side by side. Refusing a traditional chronological or historiographical approach, the exhibition highlights formal echoes across the ages.
The meaning of the word ‘Baroque’ is wide and manifold. With Sanguine, the word is understood as “overwhelm”, “excitement”, “turmoil” and “violence”. The exhibition poses and visualizes the argument that Baroque continues in today’s art.
Among the fantastic works supporting this thesis is Carla Arocha (b. 1961, Caracas) and Stéphane Schraenen’s (b. 1971, Antwerp) floor installation piece. Its mirroring, cut-out surfaces not only reflect the surrounding religious sculptural pieces, but also create a formal parallel with its dramatic folds of clothing.
Plenty of overwhelm can be found in Berlinde De Bruyckere’s (b.1964, Gent) installation piece. “In Flanders Fields” (2000) beautiful and scenically displays embalmed corpses of real horses that died of natural causes.
Nadia Naveau’s (b. 1975,Bruges) piece “Deaf Ted, Danoota & Me” (2015) is composed of three individual plaster busts that theatrically and humorously allude to their historical Rococo counterparts.
Tobias Rehberger ‘s (b. 1966, Frankfurt) installations combine architecture, design and video art, re-interpreting spaces and questioning the limits of artistic practices.
Plain violent, cruel, dramatic or emotionally moving, historical works by Caravaggio (1571-1610), Anthony van Dyck (1599-1641) and Jacob Jordaens (1593-1678) are thoughtfully shown throughout.
Sanguine accomplishes a seamless integration of past and present. If sometimes we feel disconnected from tradition and the past when looking at contemporary art, Sanguine gives evidence that it is hardly the case.
Images from top to bottom:
Berlinde De Bruyckere, In Flanders Fields (2000), Collection M HKA – Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp / Collection Flemish Community, Antwerp;
Carla Arocha and Stéphane Schraenen, Circa Tabac (2007), Courtesy the artists and Fondazione Prada;
Nadia Naveau, Figaro’s Triumph, Deaf Ted, Roi, je t’attends à Babylone (2014), Photo Delfino Sisto Legnani and Marco Cappelletti, Courtesy Fondazione Prada;
Caravaggio, David con la testa di Golia (1609-10), © Ministero per i Beni e le Attività culturali – Galleria Borghese.