Turin, a major exhibition on Nicola Bolla rereads the last 25 years of his career

From June 23 to October 16, the Cavallerizza in Turin is hosting a major exhibition dedicated to Nicola Bolla, one of the most interesting and at the same time most concealed names in contemporary Italian art. The exhibition traces the last 25 years of his career.

The spaces of the Cavallerizza in Turin will host, from June 23 to October 16, 2022, a large-scale solo exhibition by Nicola Bolla (Saluzzo, 1963) entitled Untitled!, which takes a path of reinterpretation of the last 25 years of artistic activity by a singular and still partly concealed artist. Bolla achieved stardom in the 2000s thanks to a series of iconic installations(Vanitas) based on sculptural works that, through the exclusive use of an extremely reflective material such as Swarovski crystal, reinterpreted the history of sculpture by inverting its constituent factors, which had always been based on heavy, hard materials that were not very conducive to the reflection of light. In the history of sculpture, but also in the history of late 20th century installation, Bolla’s proposal intends to insinuate itself as a visually surprising and conceptually elusive novelty. Also contributing to this is another iconic series coeval with the one mentioned above, namely the Playing Cards series: sculptures executed with playing cards (rummy, Salzburg, etc.).

In recent decades, there have been many exegetes of Bolla’s work: from Claudio Strinati to Luca Beatrice, from Alberto Fiz to Roberto Mastroianni, from Chiara Canali to Vittorio Sgarbi. Compared to the most immediate interpretation of Bolla’s work, the one that sees in thepop and ironic-conceptual operation its most obvious root, the artist and the curator of the exhibition, Nicola Davide Angerame, wanted to construct new exhibition hypotheses and interpretative theses, aimed at considering Bolla’s artistic proposal more seriously, and as “out of its time.” In order to do so, it seemed to both of them necessary and indispensable to relate Bolla’s copious pictorial work, unknown to most, to his more popular sculptural works, offering many unpublished works, some of them very recent.

The exhibition, in strong dialogue with the historical and layered exhibition space of the Galoppatoio and the Scuderie Reali (arranged behind the Teatro Regio in Turin), is designed by its authors as a visual, sensory and conceptual polyphony aimed at introducing the visitor inside a coherent and multifaceted world built in series of works that have a common root: an all-contemporary taste for phenomena and styles that include the Renaissance as well as the Baroque, the modern as well as the ancestral. The exhibition features some important and large unseen and site-specific installations capable of constructing spatiotemporal dimensions that, because of the tragic events of recent months, take on the sense of a vaticinium, of an inauspicious prescience on the part of a Hamlet-like artist who has always been committed to reflecting on the transience of life and the meaning of existence, albeit through an elegant, ironic, at times seemingly carefree and at times grotesque artistic language.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalog in the form of a monograph and artist’s book produced by Arti Grafiche Parini and to be presented in mid-September with images of the installed works, a long interview with Nicola Bolla and texts by the curator. This exhibition takes place in conjunction with two Turin group shows that welcome some significant works by Nicola Bolla at two major museums, such as the Royal Palace of Turin and the Reggia di Venaria. The exhibition is made possible thanks to the contribution of Fondazione CRT and Compagnia dei Caraibi.

Born in Saluzzo in 1963 Nicola Bolla lives and works between Saluzzo and Turin. He has exhibited his work widely in Europe, the United States and Asia. He has participated in major international exhibitions, including two editions of the Venice Biennale, that of 1995 and that of 2009. He has collaborated with major galleries such as Sperone Westwater and Nohra Haime in New York, and his work is in the Calvin Klein, Yoko Ono and George Michael collections. The Turin exhibition is an opportunity to access his best-known works, in dialogue with his many painting cycles, such as: the painted LPs, Fairytales, Rebus, Tombstones, Horizons, and the recent large Pigment Painting and Pigment Paper.

Turin, a major exhibition on Nicola Bolla rereads the last 25 years of his career
Turin, a major exhibition on Nicola Bolla rereads the last 25 years of his career

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