Thursday, July 11, 2013

MAXXI National Museum of XXi Century Art

Top of the list on arriving in Rome was a visit to the MAXXI. It is a new museum - opened in 200. The architecture is stunning.
There were several exhibitions of Italian 20th century artists. But the exhibition that I enjoyed most was called 'the sea is my land'  photographs by 22 artists originating from countries bordering the Mediterranean. The show was sponsored and commissioned by BNL to celebrate its 100 years in business.
Two works really appealed:
Taysir Batnijis  "Watch Towers"  2008. From a distance they looked like the work of Bernd and Hilla Becher, but when you look more closely you can see that they are indeed images of watch towers. They were taken by the artist in the West Bank and some of them had to be taken in a hurry to avoid difficulties with authorities.

The other really favourite work was by David Maljkovic and was called "Recalling Frames" 2010. These works were a montage of stills fro the Orson Wells film "The Trial" based on Kafka's novel. The film was shot in Zagreb in 1962.
The artist included images of his own, taken a the same locations as those in the film.
The collages are very eerie and evocative. People float in and out of the sections of the montages - and the mood of The Trial, and the bleakness of the locations is Zagreb gives the works an existential feeling

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