The C+N Canepaneri gallery is proud to present their latest exhibition entitled “The Untimeliness of the Contemporary" dedicated to the works of the great artist Nam June Paik (Seoul, 1932 – Miami, 2006) between 1962 and 1995.
Shaped by the avantguard neo-dada art movement Fluxus, Paik became one of the leading pioneers of video art, of which he is considered to have made his public debut with the exhibition entitled 'Exposition of Music - Electronic Television' held in 1963 at the Art Gallery Parnass in Wuppertal. Fundamental in making up his life works was his meeting with the composer John Cage in 1958 and the conceptual artist George Maciunas in 1961. Equally important was his participation in 1962 at the 'Fluxus Internationale Festspiele Neuester Musik' of Wiesbaden, together with his arrival in New York in 1964 when he cemented his friendship and collaborated with cellist Charlotte Moorman.
His endless searching for ideas and his radical experimentation of language through video culminating in complex installations, Paik was successful in using a wide variety of media combined with the philosophy of Fluxus, the spirituality of Zen and the subversive use of technology. He experimented with video as a new form of visual, sound, musical and performance expression, invented technological devices which allowed the manipulation of shape and colour, reaching out to the utilisation of even laser techology in the 1990s.
In particular, for the C+N Canepaneri exhibition, are two works of art which remind us of the important collaboration brought about by Paik with other artists and musicians from John Cage to Joseph Beuys, from Robert Rauschenberg to Allan Kaprow. The artwork entitled 'Beuys Voice' (1988) presents a tale which summarises the symbolic emblems, for example, a hat or a hare, of the German Fluxus artist Beuys, with illustrations and paintings, and the installation, 'Violoncello' (1989), has its origins in the performance staged in Reggio Emilia in 1989 by Paik, together with Charlotte Moorman.
His experimentation with television monitors are central to his works of art in the 1990s. One is the TV Frog (1979-1995) where 2 frogs, sculptured in grey stone, are placed looking at a television screen which gives an account of the frogs themselves and the second, the TV Clock (1990-1991) where a sculpture of a woman holding up a clock has been placed in the centre of 3 television screens which, by way of a video camera, films the movement of the clock's pendulum.
Finally, in the silk-screen printing entitled 'Fluxus Island' (1962) Paik, connecting events that happened over that particular year, depicts the confines of the island of the mind and ideas whilst 'The Oil Lamp and Watchman' portrays in an emblemic way just how much television and its various contemporary media can be interpreted as illuminating lights and landmarks in a culture which is continuously evolving and changing.
Exhibition curated by Francesca Guerisoli