“Battaglia Foundry Sculpture Prize #01” at Fonderia Artistica Battaglia, Milan
Fonderia Artistica Battaglia opens an exhibition celebrating the first edition of the Battaglia Foundry Sculpture Prize 2016.
The exhibition marks the first of a series of annual events that the foundry will dedicate to the endorsement of contemporary bronze art addressed to young international artists.
“BFSP #01” wishes to be an international showcase for new emerging talents, supporting the ancient lost-wax casting technique through the monitoring, selection and formation of international artists in the production of innovative works.
The Prize works as a vantage point to observe these new emerging talents at work. It represents a challenge for all young artists wishing to sculpt. The aim of the Prize is to promote the revival of the lost-wax casting process—a sculptural technique which has remained virtually unchanged throughout the centuries—in two ways: by stimulating the artists’ interest in this ancient methodology and by encouraging the new generations to bring new elements of technical innovation within this kind of practice.
The Prize brings new energy into Fonderia Artistica Battaglia’s own artistic and technical research and helps the foundry writing a new future together with the artists, taking its great historical tradition into modern contemporary expressions.
The exhibition “BFSP #01”, curated by Camilla Bonzanigo, Culture and Development responsible in the historic Milanese Foundry, describes the entire process of the Prize through the showcase of the winning artwork and the projects of the five international artists who have taken part in this first edition. The show illustrates the different ways in which the artists have approached the Foundry’s challenge, getting to terms with one of the most ancient sculptural techniques of all times.
The main focus of the show is the winning artwork of “BFSP #01” by Nicolas Deshayes (1983, Nancy, France), who worked for a month at Fonderia Artistica Battaglia during his artistic residency between June and July 2016. The experience allowed this young artist to realise the artwork he proposed in the initial project by working in direct contact with the master artisans of the foundry, who followed the work throughout all its technical phases.
The exhibition is held in three large rooms on the first floor and in the Artists’ Studio of Fonderia Artistica Battaglia, one of the most significant sites in the production of bronze sculpture in the history of Italian art.
The first room on the first floor is dedicated to the presentation of the prize, showcasing drawings and preparatory sketches of all the finalists competing in this first edition of “BFSP #01”.
The second room hosts a brief video illustrating the artist’s residency in all its production phases, directed and edited by Virginia Taroni.
The last room presents to the public the bronze sculpture by Nicolas Deshayes, Dear Polyp, award winning artwork that stood up for its original interpretation of the traditional lost-wax casting method. The artist, in fact, planned out the realisation of the sculpture starting from polyurethane expanding foam and then moved on to work directly on the wax model through a very articulate and innovative approach. The sculpture is connected to a water heating system via a pipe and thus changes temperature just like a living creature, adding a new kind of sensuality to the artistic experience.
The artists’ Studio illustrates the elements which concurred in the production of Dear Polyp, during the residency of Nicolas Deshayes: the original polyurethane foam model created by the artist, plaster moulds, wax samples and the wooden and plaster template used to create the final bronze shape.
The exhibition is illustrated in a leaflet edited by Mousse Publishing, including a critical essay by Nicola Ricciardi, independent art writer and curator, who followed the evolution of Nicolas Deshayes’ residency in all its various steps.
Always in line with the ever-changing nature of the arts, the Fonderia Artistica Battaglia acts also as a cultural institution, supporting artists, promoting collaborations with some of the most interesting voices of the national and international artistic scene, constantly widening its network with all the key players of the art world including public and private museums, curators, galleries, research centres, scientific or art-related institutes, always promoting new ideas.
at Fonderia Artistica Battaglia, Milan
until 25 November 2016