MALAGA.- The Centro de Arte Contemporáneo de Málaga
is presenting A BLACK HOLE OF NEEDS, HOPES AND AMBITIONS, the first exhibition in Spain of the work of Monica Bonvicini, one of the most important names in contemporary art today. The exhibition focuses on the relationship between gender and power, not as a display or vision of social and human evolution but rather as an ongoing dialogue with the viewer, who inevitably responds to the provocative nature of Bonvicinis work. A BLACK HOLE OF NEEDS, HOPES AND AMBITIONS comprises a large-scale installation entitled Satisfy Me (2010) made of aluminium letters. The CAC Málaga has been chosen as the venue for its first display inside a building.
I dont make art to be beautiful. This phrase sums up Monica Bonvicinis vision of artistic creation in general and her own in particular in which she aims to establish a permanent dialogue between her work and the viewer. Provocation is used as a means to justify the end and the ultimate aim of her activities. Over the course of her career Bonvicini has focused on representing power through everyday elements to be seen all around us in cities, specifically buildings and their structures. For the artist, architecture is a discipline associated with the masculine gender.
Satisfy Me, the installation that is displayed at the Centro de Arte Contemporáneo de Málaga, constitutes a declaration of intent on the part of the artist. It consists of letters attached to a supporting framework and measures 1,750 x 300 x 300cm. It was first exhibited last year in an open space on the outskirts of the German city of Herne where it was part of an initiative involving more than 40 artists within the EMSCHERKUNST.2010 project for prospective candidates for European Capital of Culture. The context in which it was shown provided the meaning for Satisfy Me as it was installed in the post-industrial landscape of this region of Germany, which is dotted with the remains of disused train lines, old mines and a polluted river. The sky was reflected on the aluminium of Bonvicinis work.
The CAC Málaga has now been chosen for the first display of the work inside a building. On this occasion the metal reflects the buildings interior architecture. The message of the work thus changes with the context and the selected venue and the Centres architecture and history thus become further elements within it. The importance of the space makes it a key element in the final interpretation of the piece.
For Fernando Francés, Director of the CAC Málaga: If there is one discipline that particularly interests Monica Bonvicini it is architecture and its social, political and economic implications. She investigates the logic inherent in public and private spaces, focusing on their psychological and social facets in order to question the link between the functionality, aesthetic and intentions with which they were conceived.
In addition to large-scale installations, Monica Bonvicini has used different media for her works including collage, video, drawing and sculpture. Her materials are not selected at random as most are industrial in origin and are linked to the Modernist aesthetic and to activities traditionally undertaken by men. Glass, cement, metal, leather and neon are all present in Bonvicinis output. The type of relationships that the artist aims to establish between gender, power and space are to be found in works such as Light Me Black (2009), an immense sculpture consisting of 144 fluorescent lighting fixtures suspended from the ceiling, and BUILTFORCRIME (2006) in which the glass and lighting elements were specially treated so that each letter was struck on the inside but not to the point of breaking it.
Monica Bonvicini was born in Venice in 1965 and now lives and works in Berlin. Between 1986 and 1993 she studied at the University of the Arts in Berlin and at the Art Institute of California. Between 1998 and 2001 she was invited professor at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena and at the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia (California). Since 2003 she has been Senior Professor of Performative Arts and Sculpture at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Vienna.
Over the course of her career Bonvicini has received numerous grants, prizes and awards. She recently won the Light Art Competition for the Olympic Park of the 2012 London Olympics while this year she participated in the Venice Biennial. In 2007 Bonvicini exhibited the floating sculpture SHE LIES opposite the Oslo Opera House. In 2005 she received the Prize for Young Art awarded by the Berlin Nationalgalerie while in 1999 she was awarded the Golden Lion for the best pavilion at the 48th Venice Biennial. Bonvicini also participated on the design for the sets of This is not a Love Song for the Wiener Festwochen (2007) and was assistant director on various films including Hasan no si efermato a Badolato (2001) by the director Jan Ralske.
Particularly notable among her recent solo exhibitions were those held at the Kunsthalle Fridericianum in Kassel in 2010, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Lenbachhaus, Munich and the Kunstmuseum, Basel, in 2009, and at the Sculpture Centre in New York and the Boonnier Konsthall in Stockholm in 2007.