Trilogy of Matter II – Nothing is Lost
The Trilogy of Matter is a major exhibition project devised by Lorenzo Giusti for GAMeC in Bergamo, dedicated to the investigation of matter in twentieth and twenty-first-century art. Launched in 2018 with Black Hole. Art and Materiality from Informal to Invisible, curated by Sara Fumagalli and Lorenzo Giusti, it recounted the specific interest of various artists in the depths of matter; it continued in 2021 with Nothing is Lost. Art and Matter in Transformation, curated by Anna Daneri and Lorenzo Giusti, proposing a reflection on matter in transformation, passages of state and ecological systems; the cycle will conclude in 2023 with the exhibition A Leap into the Void. Art Beyond Matter, curated by Lorenzo Giusti and Domenico Quaranta. The third chapter of the cycle will explore the theme of the dematerialization of art, connecting the investigations into the void initiated by the first movements of the historical avant-garde, and developed by experimental groups post-World War II, with the investigations into flux undertaken in the years of early computerization, only to be continued throughout the post-digital era with the use of new languages and simulated realities.
Nothing is Lost turns its attention to the work of those artists who, at various times, have investigated the transformation of matter, drawing inspiration from the lives of the elements to develop a reflection on the reality of things, on change, and on time. “Rien ne se perd” (“nothing is lost”) is the opening to the famous maxim attributed to Lavoisier, with which the French chemist explained the general sense of his law of the conservation of mass, which stated that over the course of a chemical reaction, the sum of the mass of the reactants is equal to the sum of the masses of the substances. Matter, in other words, cannot be created and cannot be destroyed. This fundamental principle would set the stage for a number of founding notions of modernity, which over the centuries to come, would lead to the definition of the theory of relativity and thus to the identification of a substantial equivalence between mass and energy, and hence to the progressively more elaborate belief—as recounted by scientists, artists, and philosophers—in matter which is always alive, always present, part of a world in endless transformation.
Nothing is Lost. Art and Matter in Transformation occupies all the exhibition spaces of the GAMeC, developing an itinerary with a strong sensorial impact, given the material and synesthetic nature of the numerous works on display, on loan from international collections both public and private. The four sections of the exhibition—Fire, Earth, Water, and Air—refer to the natural elements, understood here as the states of material aggregation, and thus preempt its relationships and transformations: fire/burning state; earth/solid state; water/liquid state; and air/gaseous state.With a rich selection of works, the show provides an articulated framework, one capable of highlighting the strong link which has always bound artists to the chemistry of the elements and the transformation of matter. A field of study and experimentation which in our own era also constitutes a significant declination in terms of a reflection on the impact of human presence on the natural equilibria (from the availability of resources to climate change).
Artists: Ignasi Aballí, William Anastasi, Isabelle Andriessen, Davide Balula, Lynda Benglis, Alessandro Biggio, Karla Black, Michel Blazy, Renata Boero, Dove Bradshaw, Victor Brauner, Dora Budor, Pier Paolo Calzolari, Nina Canell, Leonora Carrington, Giulia Cenci, Tony Conrad, Tania Pérez Córdova, Lisa Dalfino & Sacha Kanah, Giorgio de Chirico, Edith Dekyndt, Marcel Duchamp, Olafur Eliasson, Leandro Erlich, Max Ernst, Joana Escoval, Cerith Wyn Evans, Lars Fredrikson, Loïe Fuller, Cyprien Gaillard, Pinot Gallizio, Hans Haacke, Roger Hiorns, Rebecca Horn, Roni Horn, Paolo Icaro, Bruno Jakob, Yves Klein, Gary Kuehn, Liliane Lijn, Gordon Matta-Clark, David Medalla, Ana Mendieta, Otobong Nkanga, Jorge Peris, Otto Piene, Man Ray, Pamela Rosenkranz, Mika Rottenberg, Namsal Siedlecki, Roman Signer, Robert Smithson, Gerda Steiner & Jörg Lenzlinger, Yves Tanguy, Wolfgang Tillmans, Erika Verzutti, Andy Warhol.
.Ph: Antonio Maniscalco for GAMeC
October 12, 2021