“The attention is analytical, but the result is enigmatic.” Giulio Paolini
Krakow Witkin Gallery proudly announces Giulio Paolini’s first solo exhibition in Boston. Long associated with “Arte Povera” and primarily known for his installations, Paolini has a deep history of working in two dimensions, giving the gallery the opportunity to show a broad and deep range of editions. At first glance, the prints look similar to installations one may have seen in museums. One could assume the prints are reproductions – however, while the elements and themes are related to these large projects, the works on paper are particular to the reality of two dimensions and thus create different and significant experiences for a viewer. This exhibition’s goal is to provide a broader understanding of Paolini’s specific gestures for his prints.
To begin with, it is relevant to know that Paolini has a deep history with paper. His father worked for the Italian Institute of Graphic Arts and his mother was a school teacher. He attended the Giambattista Bodoni State Industrial Technical Institute for Graphic and Photographic Arts and graduated in 1959. He subsequently worked in graphic design and advertising. Design, legibility and the function of image form the basis of his education and early professional experiences.
Paolini’s first solo exhibition, at La Salita in Rome in 1964, consisted of raw wood panels hung on, or leaning against, walls, giving the gallery the appearance of being in the midst of a show being hung. Ever since this project, Paolini has explored issues of control and comprehension using appropriation, collage and perspective. Space is doubled, fragmented and open-ended. He balances between centrifugal and centripetal forces where the outside comes in, the inside moves out and hierarchy is always in question. His use of reference is made plain, not just to clarify a meaning behind the reference, but also to acknowledge and focus on the idea of “reference” as a forever-morphing aspect of life. Motion (or the lack thereof), time and space are all equally important to the artist and his work. He has always created a balance between the hand of the author and the eye of the observer with, as Maddalena Disch has described, a “theater of evocation” as the result.
Giulio Paolini lives and works in Turin, Italy. Major solo exhibitions include the Fondazione Carriero, Milan, Italy (2018); Center for Italian Modern Art, New York City, NY, USA (2016); Whitechapel Gallery, London, UK (2014); MACRO Museo d’arte contemporanea Roma, Rome, Italy (2013); Accademia di Belle Arti di Brera, Milan, Italy (2010); Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli, Naples, Italy (2009); Kunstmuseum Winthertur, Switzerland (2005); Museo d’arte moderna e contemporanea di Trento e Rovereto, Rovereto, Italy (2004); Museo D’Arte Contemporanea, Castello di Rivoli, Turin, Italy (1999); Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna, Rome, Italy (1988); and The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY, USA (1985). He has also participated in numerous group exhibitions, including Fondazione Prada, Milan, Italy (2018); State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg, Russia (2018); Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art, Porto, Portugal (2016); Centre Pompidou, Paris, France (2015); Musée d’Orsay, Paris, France (2013); and The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA (2012). His work has been included in many editions of the Venice Biennale, Italy (2013, 2011, 1997, 1995, 1993, 1986, 1984, 1980, 1978, 1976, 1970) and ‘documenta’, Kassel, Germany (1982, 1977, 1972). His work features in numerous international public and private collections, including Tate Collection, London, UK; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, CA, USA; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY, USA; The Art Institute, Chicago, IL, USA; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands; Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Germany; Galleria nazionale d’arte moderna e contemporanea, Rome, Italy; and Musée d’Art Moderne, Brussels, Belgium.