“The End of the World” at Luigi Pecci Centre for Contemporary Arts, Prato
On the occasion of its reopening, the Luigi Pecci Centre for Contemporary Art presents the exhibition “The End of the World”, curated by director Fabio Cavallucci with the cooperation of (as well as that of the internal team) a large group of international advisors including: Elena Agudio, Antonia Alampi, Luca Barni, Myriam Ben Salah, Marco Brizzi, Lorenzo Bruni, Jota Castro, Wlodek Goldkorn, Katia Krupennikova, Morad Montazami, Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung, Giulia Poli, Luisa Santacesaria, Monika Szewczyk and Pier Luigi Tazzi.
«The title The End of the World comes from the idea that that which we have known up to now has become obsolete — says Fabio Cavallucci, director of the Pecci Centre — The exhibition is not, therefore, indicative of an impending catastrophic future but rather of the awareness of the prevailing uncertainty of our world and a reflection on scenarios which surround us. The means (also conceptually) of interpretation of reality which we once knew are no longer sufficient in comprehending our current time. Hence, from this structural change, there comes a widespread sense of the end.»
Including the works of over 50 international artists in an exhibition which will extend over the entire museum showing area of over 3000 square metres, the exhibition is set up as a kind of exercise of distance which pushes us to take a look at our present from far away. Spectators will enter through the new wing of the museum, designed by Maurice Nio — a sort of spaceship which has landed here from some far away planet, ready to transmit and receive ‘cosmic’ messages with its antenna — and will immediately encounter an installation by the Swiss artist Thomas Hirschhorn, A Break Through: a breakthrough from which the waste of another dimension falls. Once inside they will experience a feeling of being projected a few thousand light years away from the present to review our world as if it were a fossil, geological eras from our current time, forcing us to view the world from afar and to think about the immeasurable cosmic distances and the interminable ages of the Earth and the Universe, in face of which our lives seem like insubstantial fragments. The world which we have know, from the origin of humanity to today, our world, will appear to us as having already ended. This will create the sensation of being suspended between a now distant past and a still distant future. The End of the World is set in this limbo and through various works which are to be physically experienced in an alternation of space and sound, we will be dragged in a continuous movement, inescapable, a kind of loop of eternal return which brings us both further away and closer to the present and offers us new interpretations.
The exhibition will include works by already internationally established artists, such as the Native American Jimmie Durham, Cuban Carlos Garaicoa and Chinese Qiu Zhijie and Cai Guo-Qiang, as well as pieces by younger artists such as the Brazilian Henrique Oliveira or the Swiss Julian Charriere, who has a work created with the German Julius Von Bismarck. There will also be pieces which by now are a part of the history of art, like those of Marcel Duchamp, Pablo Picasso or Umberto Boccioni in dialogue with numerous younger artists who are still relatively unknown, many of whom come from regions of strong contrast and conflict such as Eastern Europe, North Africa, the Middle East and South America. The audience will pass through various environments experiencing different sensations: the detachment from this world of ours, so small and insignificant, the nostalgia for something which we once loved and have lost, until we come to recognise a glimmer of the future which is already present today, even if we don’t yet realise it.
Throughout the exhibition, many expressions and artistic languages will be interconnected: music, theatre, cinema, architecture and dance represented not just as side events but as integral moments of the show, helping to build an immersive and captivating narrative. Thus, in addition to the artists, there will be numerous personalities from other genres, eclectic and visionary, who will enrich the story with their contributions: from famous singer Bjork, architect Didier Fiuza Faustino, playwright and actor Pippo Delbono to electronic musician Joakim.
The exhibition “The End of the World” will be accompanied by a catalogue published in two languages, Italian and English. It will be comprised of over 300 colour images which will include pieces on the artists involved in the exhibition, and a collection of unpublished essays and critical texts, commissioned for the occasion.
“The End of the World” will also be accompanied by a series of conferences and debates which will develop the various themes explored in the exhibition and will include scientific, philosophical and literary aspects, from more recent theories of physics to the prehistoric, and from science fiction to ecology and sustainability. The Pecci Centre is developing a series of collaborations with certain educational and scientific institutions ranging from the Scuola Normale Superiore of Pisa to the Museum of Planetary Sciences in Prato or the Museum of Prehistory at the National Library of Florence, which guarantee their support and expertise.
These cultural spots will each house a work from the Pecci Centre collection in keeping with the exhibition, with a series of successive inaugurations, beginning in September. On the one hand this will highlight the the stipulated collaborations and on the other the progressive stages leading up to the reopening of the Pecci Centre.
at Luigi Pecci Centre for Contemporary Arts, Prato
until 19 March 2017