Maurizio Cattelan

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Maurizio Cattelan is an Italian artist born in Padova, Italy, in 1960. He is probably best known for his satirical and controversial sculptures, particularly La Nona Ora (The Ninth Hour), depicting the Pope John Paul II struck down by a meteorite.


[edit] Biography

Cattelan did not attend art school but taught himself. He did many odd jobs, including one at a mortuary, which some credit for his macabre taste. He started his career in Forlì (Italy) making wooden furniture in the eighties where he came to know some designers like Ettore Sottsass. He made a catalogue of his work which he sent to galleries. This promotion gave him an opening in design and contemporary art. He created a sculpture of an ostrich with its head buried in the ground, wore a costume of a figurine with a giant head of Picasso, and affixed a Milanese gallerist to a wall with tape. During this period, he also created the Oblomov Foundation.

Most recently, Cattelan has taken on the role of curator. He resides in the East Village of New York City, but maintains a foothold in Milan. He created a magazine called Permanent Food which includes images stolen from other magazines.

[edit] Exhibition history

Cattelan has shown work internationally in many exhibitions including in Manifesta 2, 1998, Luxembourg, Melbourne International Biennial 1999 "Signs of live", 2004 Whitney Biennal [1] in New York, “Apocalypse: Beauty and Horror in Contemporary Art” at the Royal Academy of Art [2] in London, “Partners” at Haus der Kunst [3] in Munich, “Home is Where the Heart Is” at Museum van Loon [4] in Amsterdam and the 2004 Seville International Biennale [5]. He is represented by Emmanuel Perrotin [6] in Paris, Massimo de Carlo [7] in Milan and Marian Goodman Gallery in New York[8].

[edit] Artistic style

Maurizio Cattelan along with long-term collaborators Ali Subotnick and Massimiliano Gioni, curated the 2006 Berlin Biennale [9], ran the Wrong Gallery [10], a glass door in New York attracting many highly accomplished artists to exhibit and published Charley: an occasional slightly satirical arts journal. He frequently submits articles to international publications such as Flash Art [11].

Cattelan’s personal art practice has led to him gaining a reputation as an art scene’s joker. One of his best known sculptures, ‘La Nona Ora’ consists of an effigy of Pope John Paul II in full ceremonial dress being crushed by a meteor and is a good example of his typically humorous approach to work. Another of Cattelan’s quirks is his use of a ‘stand-in’ in media interviews equipped with a stock of evasive answers and non-sensical explanations. Cattelan’s art makes fun of various systems of order – be it social niceties or his regular digs at the art world – and he often utilises themes and motifs from art of the past and other cultural sectors in order to get his point across. Cattelan sees no reason why contemporary art should be excluded from the critical spotlight it shines on other areas of life and his work seeks to highlight the incongruous nature of the world and our interventions within it no matter where they may lie. His work is often based on simple puns or subverts clichéd situations by, for example, substituting animals for people in sculptural tableaux. Frequently morbidly fascinating, Cattelan’s dark humour sets his work above the simple pleasures of well-made visual one-liners.[citation needed]

He has been described by Jonathan P. Binstock, curator of contemporary art at the Corcoran Gallery of Art "as one of the great post-Duchampian artists and a smartass, too".[1]

[edit] Works

[edit] Bibliography

[edit] References

  1. ^ A Head of His Time: Exploring the commodious nature of art, Gene Weingarten, reprint at Jewish World Review, Jan 21, 2005

[edit] External links

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