05.09.14 - The Classical in Art

The Classic in Art

Curator: Giacinto Di Pietrantonio

September-November 2014


The exhibition The Classic in Art, curated by Giacinto Di Pietrantonio and organized by Accademia Carrara of Bergamo, GAMeC and the Museum of Calques “Ernesto de la Cárcova” of Buenos Aires, attempts to highlight the survival of images through time. The curator analyses and recognizes the worth of the concept of “copy”, both in sculpture and painting. Throughout the three gallery rooms, the exhibition explores the concepts of classical art, religion, body and portraiture.


In Gallery room 1, the calque of Michelangelo's Pieta organizes the tour to develop the subject of death, the significance of sacrifice and the currency of religious rules in art. Thus, from the figure of motherhood and piety, Kiki Smith´s work Pyre Woman Kneeling describes the suffering of a woman at the stake, along with works that portray the final judgment and the various interpretations of life and death.


In Gallery room 2, once more Michelangelo with the artwork Head of David is the central figure in the gallery that displays various concepts of portrait throughout history. From the portrait bourgeois to Sam Durant contemporary artwork, where the busts of a group of Italian anarchists update the gender as recognition to those whose ideas transformed the community´ political and social foundations. Including also the selfportrait or intimate portrait, where Alfredo Pirri takes an infinite number of copies from his own face; as well as Charles Avery single portrait, that depicts his friends and builds characters as phylosophers of a fictional world.


In Gallery room 3, the exhibition recovers the importance of the body and the concept of fragment which, taken from ancient times, introduces us to the world of modernity. Pistoletto's work with its mirror, L´Etrusco, proposes us to be both spectators and participants at the same time, questioning the piece’ authorship. Is the viewer or the artist who realize the work? Or are they both? Therefore, Shirin, Abbas Kiarostami's film that registers the faces of the spectators during an imaginary projection, closes the exhibition giving a role of relevance to the public.


The Classic in Art offers various paths, ways of reading and approaching the classical to the contemporary.

The curator analyzes the appropriation and examination of images by means of plaster copies of classical sculptures used to study art in the early 20th century. The exhibition features striking sculptures and addresses how they dialogue with paintings that attest as well to the copy and the tradition of artists’ studios.

In a collaborative effort between Fundación Proa, the Accademia Carrara, and the Galleria d'Arte Moderna e Contemporanea di Bergamo, the exhibition—which features over sixty works—includes pieces from the Museo de Calcos de Buenos Aires.