Reaching for the Stars, Palazzo Strozzi [March 4–June 18, 2023]
Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi and Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo come together to celebrate the luminaries of contemporary art in the heart of Florence.
The Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi in Florence is proud to present Reaching for the Stars, an exhibition exploring the luminaries of contemporary art today in over 70 works by leading international contemporary artists including Maurizio Cattelan, Cindy Sherman, Damien Hirst, Lara Favaretto, William Kentridge, Berlinde De Bruyckere, Sarah Lucas and Lynette Yiadom-Boakye. Promoted and organised by the Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi and the Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Reaching for the Stars explores some of the most important shifts and developments in art over the past decades through a constellation of artworks on display in Palazzo Strozzi, with a special new installation for the palazzo’s Renaissance courtyard by Goshka Macuga, in the shape of a monumental space rocket beckoning visitors to embark on a journey with infinite layers of meaning.
Reaching for the Stars celebrates the 30th anniversary of the Sandretto Re Rebaudengo Collection capturing its variety, its development, and its nature as a constant “work in progress”. The exhibition uses painting, sculpture, installations, photography, videos and performance art to enhance the dialogue between Palazzo Strozzi and contemporary art, offering visitors a journey of discovery among the stars of global art in recent decades, exploring the work of those artists who have marked the development of artistic practice between the latter part of the 20th century and the start of our own century. The show addresses such varied aspects as experimentation with techniques and styles, identity and the body, the relationship between the figurative and the abstract, the juxtaposition of history and memory, individuality and the community.
The exhibition hosts such fundamental works by Anish Kapoor and Damien Hirst, alongside an extensive selection of works by Maurizio Cattelan, an artist whose work is crucial to any exploration of Italian art between the 1990s and the 2000s, together with works by Paola Pivi and Lara Favaretto, among others. The exhibition unfolds in themed chapters such as the section dominated by Cindy Sherman, triggering a social and political reflection on the theme of identity in connection with works by Shirin Neshat, Barbara Kruger and Pawel Althamer. The exploration of sculpture expands to include large works by Andra Ursuţa, Adrian Villar Rosa, Berlinde De Bruyckere and Mark Manders whose art investigates the body and the figure amid deconstruction and reassembly. This is echoed by an exploration of painting in the work of such artists as Lynette Yiadom-Boakye, Sanya Kantarovsky, Michael Armitage, Cecily Brown, testifying to the medium’s ongoing vitality between the figurative and the abstract. The exhibition is completed by a large section on video art with signature work by such artists as William Kentridge, Ragnar Kjartansson, Doug Aitken, Douglas Gordon and Philippe Parreno.
“Reaching for the Stars is a journey through thirty years of discovery and research in contemporary art,” says Arturo Galansino, Director of the Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi and curator of the exhibition. “Hosting a collection like this in Florence means celebrating the values of patronage and of commissioning in the city where great collecting was born. The collaboration between Palazzo Strozzi and the Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo goes beyond the mere exhibition of works, but is a synergy of values, a shared platform in which to stimulate accessibility, participation, and experimentation.”
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