Death, Sacrifice, Forgiveness
January 31, 2013
The Ujazdowski Castle Center for Contemporary Art is staging the first solo exhibition by acclaimed Italian sculptor Maurizio Cattelan in Poland. A retrospective of Cattelan’s work at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City proved to be one of the hottest artistic events of last year.
One of Cattelan’s most famous sculptures is that of Pope John Paul II struck down by a meteorite, entitled La Nona Ora (The Ninth Hour) and produced in 1999. It was shown at the Royal Academy in London as part of the prestigious Apocalypse exhibition and was sold at auction for $886,000. The exhibition in Warsaw, entitled Amen, consists of some of Cattelan’s latest works, in which he explores the modern perception of death, sacrifice, forgiveness, national identity and the origins of evil in humans.
His creations become a personal question about the meaning of suffering which people repress from their awareness, but which is an integral part of our lives from the day we were born until we die. A dying horse and a tormented woman force viewers to reflect on the ethical and anthropological aspects of sacrifice and death. The realistic appearance of Cattelan’s sculptures calls to mind paintings by Caravaggio. The dirty feet of a woman and a hanged child are a powerful reminder that just a moment ago, these people were walking among us.
The exhibition is being shown in two locations. Apart from the Center for Contemporary Art, a part of it is on display outdoors at 14 Próżna St.
until Feb. 24
Ujazdowski Castle Center for Contemporary Art
2 Jazdów St., tel. +48 22 628-12-71 to 73; www.csw.art.pl
Open Tue.-Sun. noon-7 p.m., Fri. noon-9 p.m.; Tickets zl.12 (full price) and 6 (discount); free admission on Thursdays