top of page

MAURIZIO CATTELAN & AI WEIWEI: ART AGAINST DESPOTISM



EARLIER THIS MONTH, THE MUSEUM ADDED L.O.V.E. (2015) BY MAURIZIO CATTELAN TO THE GALLERY FLOOR. THE NEW INSTALLATION DIRECTLY FACES AI WEIWEI’S PAPERCUTS AND MIDDLE FINGER SCULPTURES. 



Challenging authority is a common theme for contemporary Italian sculpture artist Mauricio Cattelan, whose piece L.O.V.E. now boldly rests atop Pompeii-red Greco-Roman columns in Artemizia’s museum gallery.


L.O.V.E. is an acronym for the Italian words freedom, hate, revenge and eternity (Libertà, Odio, Vendetta, Eternità), and Cattelan intends for the piece to stand as a powerful symbol rejecting authoritarianism in post-war Italy. The artist created the original, larger-than-life sculpture for the stock exchange headquarters in Milan. However, thanks to Cattelan’s limited-release of L.O.V.E., museum visitors can now also see smaller versions in Bisbee. 


THE ORIGINAL L.O.V.E. (2015) BY MAURICIO CATTELAN CAN BE FOUND OUTSIDE OF THE MILAN STOCK EXCHANGE HEADQUARTERS.



“At the museum, we care deeply about uplifting narratives that are important to the artists in our collection,” says Sloane Bouchever, Founder and Director of Artemizia. “By placing L.O.V.E. in our main gallery adjacent to Ai Weiwei, we’re introducing an important shared motif among both artists to our visitors: Using art to reject absolute power.”


L.O.V.E. Installation Finds A Home Next to Ai Weiwei



The museum put L.O.V.E. next to works belonging to acclaimed contemporary Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, including four of his middle finger sculptures that represent the artist’s not-so-inconspicuous values toward institutional authority. 


(Left) Ai Weiwei’s middle finger sculptures are displayed adjacent to L.O.V.E. by Maurizio Cattelan in the museum (Right)



“We’ve had L.O.V.E. in our collection for a little while now, but the idea of putting a Cattelan next to Ai Wewei’s work only recently came to us. Paired with my Pompeii-red column installation titled End of Empire, it seemed like an ideal  addition to the museum floor,” says Bouchever. 


Along with his middle finger sculptures, AF’s Ai Weiwei collection contains an eight-piece paper cut series in red that nods to the artist’s political activism. AF also displays over 5,000 of his handmade and hand-painted porcelain sunflower seeds. 


“The two artists complement each other because they both use art to challenge despotism,” says Bouchever. “We wanted to provide an opportunity for visitors to experience this in the museum.”



 

Members and non-members can experience works by Cattelan, Ai Weiwei and more during standard museum business hours: Thursday through Sunday, 11am-4pm. Members are free, non-members $10 admission.










9 views

Comments


bottom of page