The Art of Memory

Ionesco Suite,
Courtesy of Wemhoner Collection
Courtesy of MASBEDO & Galleria Sabauda
Installation view at Vestfossen Kunstlaboratorium, Norway
Madame Pinin,
Courtesy of MASBEDO & Snaporaz Verein
Handle With Care,
Installation view at Venaria Reale

MASBEDO. Ionesco Suite, 2013. Courtesy of Wemhoner Collection © MASBEDO

MASBEDO. Fragile, 2016. Courtesy of MASBEDO & Galleria Sabauda © MASBEDO

MASBEDO. Fragile, 2016. Installation view at Vestfossen Kunstlaboratorium, Norway © MASBEDO

MASBEDO. Madame Pinin, 2017. Courtesy of MASBEDO & Snaporaz Verein © MASBEDO

MASBEDO. Handle With Care, 2016. Installation view at Venaria Reale © MASBEDO

Moscow, 12.10.2018—18.11.2018

exhibition is over

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With the support of VOLVO CAR RUSSIA
With the support of VOLVO CAR RUSSIA


For mass-media


The Art of Memory

With the support of VOLVO CAR RUSSIA

The Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow, with the participation of the Italian Cultural Institute in Moscow, presents a project by the MASBEDO art duo, ‘The Art of Memory’, including the four videos ‘Madame Pinin’ (2017), ‘Fragile’ (2016), ‘Handle With Care’ (2016) and ‘Ionesco Suite’ (2013).

MASBEDO is a duo between the artists Nicolò Massazza (b. in 1973, Milan) and Iacopo Bedogni (b. in 1970, Sarzana) that was formed in 1999 and operates in the field of video art. In their work the artists touch upon many topical themes and issues. What relationship do contemporary artists have with the art of the past? Can the history of art be a source of inspiration for the younger generation? Is there a lack of communication in modern society, and can this be filled? MASBEDO’s video creations are an organic fusion of theatre, cinema, performance and architecture.

Solo exhibitions by MASBEDO have been held at major museums and foundations in Italy and other countries: MAXXI Museo nazionale delle arti del XXI secolo (2011), GAM Galleria Civica d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea in Turin (2010), MAMbo Museum in Bologna (2008), Centro per l’arte contemporanea Pecci in Prato (2007), Macro Museum in Rome (2004), Museo de Arte Moderno (Barcelona, 2006), Centre for Contemporary Art at Ujazdowski Castle (Warsaw, 2010), Fundación Telefónica Centre (Buenos Aires, 2010), Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía (Madrid, 2009), Tel Aviv Museum of Art (2007), etc.

In 2009 MASBEDO participated in the Venice Biennale, and in 2011 for the ‘Art Unlimited’ project at the international Art Basel fair. Recently MASBEDO took part in the Romaeuropa Festival, devising a visual and musical performance with the symphony orchestra of the National Academy of Santa Cecilia in Rome, directed by Sir Antonio Pappano. Now MASBEDO are exhibiting at Manifesta 12 (Palermo).

The central theme of the exhibition is the world in all its diversity and the need for conversation. Creativity as pulsation / effervescence / expression opposed to time / inexorability / the end. The works included in this exhibit emanate from visual and mental references that have taken physical form as a hybrid comprised from clues, performances, installations and videos.

Madame Pinin (2017)
Single-channel video HD, mute
Shown courtesy of the authors, with Snaporazverein (St. Moritz), In Between Art Film (Rome) © MASBEDO

The famous restorer Pinin Brambilla Barcilon dedicated 22 years of her life to salvation of Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece ‘The Last Supper’. This was one of the most controversial and complex operations in the history of restoration. The personality of this woman, her work and everyday life form the basis of the video ‘Madame Pinin’, created by MASBEDO in 2017. The story is cited as a special case amid a wider discourse about the concept of beauty and its preservation, and also the inevitable fragility of works of art whose condition is unavoidably subjected to the test of time, although man has the ability to retain memory of the past by preserving its artefacts.

Fragile (2016)
Single-channel video HD, with sound
Shown courtesy of the authors, with Galleria Sabauda (Turin), In Between Art Film (Rome), Sammlung Wemhöner (Herford) © MASBEDO

A young man and a peacock are the central characters in the video ‘Fragile’, filmed at the Galleria Sabauda collection of royal art in Turin. The young man walks among ancient masterpieces accompanied by a peacock, symbolizing the frailty and fragility of living creatures against a backdrop of architectural splendour. This highly suggestive image is rendered even more dramatic by the emptiness of the halls and contrast with the perpetual immobility of the painted figures. The main theme of this work is the concept of a ‘cure’: the elderly animal cared for by its master becomes a metaphor combining faded vanity with the eternal search for beauty: a quest Rainer Maria Rilke defined as ‘the tremendous at its beginning’. The title of the video refers to the enchanting fragility of art, recalling the need to protect and preserve our cultural and artistic heritage. In a sense this is a form of resistance to time and human carelessness.

Handle With Care (2016)
Multi-channel video installation HD, with sound. Shown courtesy of the authors, with In Between Art Film (Rome), Snaporazverein (St. Moritz), Sammlung Wemhöner (Herford) © MASBEDO

Paola Nicolin’s art and educational centre The Classroom, opened in Milan in 2016, proposed that MASBEDO explore the issue of image preservation as part of a specific project. Leading Italian institutions involved in the restoration and preservation of artworks provided the authors with materials for this study. The result was a multi-channel video entitled ‘Handle With Care’, shot in such unique locations as the Gem Processing Workshop (Florence) and the Centre for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage (Reggia di Venaria Reale, Turin), which were first shown through the prism of modern art. By exploring questions of the materiality, value and durability of art objects, the authors studied the rituals and methods of restorers and researchers, whose activities have for many centuries been associated with the reconstruction of art objects, overcoming cultural and time constraints. ‘Handle With Care’ is a detailed and accurate account of a fragile ecosystem: a balanced, centuries-old system of coexistence between people and objects, of chemical and emotional reactions, skill and technology, history and the future.

Ionesco Suite (2013)
Video HD in 2K format, with sound accompaniment. Composer: Lagash
Shown courtesy of the authors, with Maccaferri (Bologna), Antichi (Modena), Galiani (Milan),
In Between Art Film (Rome), Sammlung Wemhöner (Herford) © MASBEDO

‘Ionesco Suite’ was conceived in divinely beautiful Iceland. This is the second episode of a trilogy that began with the video ‘Theorem of Incompleteness’ (2008), included in the Museum of Contemporary Art collection (Castello di Rivoli, Turin). ‘Ionesco Suite’ touches upon one of the main themes in MASBEDO’s work: the authors reflect on the life of man, using as a metaphor the element of nature that is both majestic and powerful, hostile and primeval. As in the work ‘Theorem of Incompleteness’, a sublimation of the act of destruction occurs in a surreal atmosphere. The table with crystal vases, symbolizing purity and perfection at the start of life, is suddenly beset by a hail of confetti, followed by cakes, sweets and sugared almonds. Then a powerful stream of cement floods and destroys everything in the frame. Bright and ethereal confetti, symbolizing the purity of childhood, contrasts with the heavy grey cement, a metaphor for adult life.

Istituto Italiano di Cultura Mosca

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