Simon Fujiwara at Fondazione PradaFondazione Prada, Milan March 2 – September 27, 2021 www.fondazioneprada.org
For this new site-specific project conceived for the ground floor of the Podium in the Milan premises of Fondazione Prada, Simon Fujiwara introduces audiences to the fairytale world of Who the Bær, an original cartoon character that inhabits a fantasy universe created by the artist. Who the Bær is a cartoon bear without a clear character – “Who” as they are known, seems to have not yet developed a strong personality or instincts, they have no history, defined gender or even sexuality. Who the Bær only knows that they are an image, and they seek to define themselves in a world of other images.
The world of Who the Bær is a flat, online world of pictures, yet one full of endless possibilities. Who the Bær can transform or adapt into any image they encounter, taking on the attributes and identities of those depicted within the image – human, animal or even object. In this sense the fantastical world of Who the Bær is a world of freedom: Who can be whoever they wish to be, Who can transcend time and place, Who can be both subject and object. Yet Who the Bær may never be able to overcome their one true challenge – to become anything more than just an image.
Who the Bær’s fantasy adventures are presented at Fondazione Prada in a giant labyrinth made almost entirely from cardboard and recyclable materials and forming the shape of a giant bear. As visitors travel through the bear-like installation, they are introduced to the basic design and formation of the cartoon character of Who the Bær before embarking on a series of adventures that follow Who the Bær around their fairytale world. Told through drawings, collages, sculptures and animations, we witness Who the Bær in their perennial quest for an authentic self.
Inspired by the tradition of fairytales as well as modern animation movies, Fujiwara uses the mechanisms of fantasy to explore some of the joys and traumas we face as a society possessed with images and spectacle.
The exhibition is completed by a publication, which is part of Fondazione Prada’s Quaderni series. Conceived as an illustrated story book, it includes a conversation with the artist.
The adventures of Who the Bær can be experienced on Instagram following their official account @whothebaer.
Esther Schipper is pleased to announce the representation of Cemile Sahin
Cemile Sahin was born in Wiesbaden, Germany, in 1990. She studied Fine Arts at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London and at the Universität der Künste in Berlin. She lives and works in Berlin.
Sahin's artistic practice operates between film, photography, sculpture and text. Points of departure include both images and stories, which she stages in multimedia video installations. Her work questions the instrumentalization of media and the significance of diverse perspectives for the writing of history. Working with a variety of media, she explores how history and its narration changes when it is constructed through diverse—or even contradictory—points of view.
Her debut novel TAXI was published in 2019, followed by her book Alle Hunde Sterben in 2020, both of which are important components of her artistic practice. In 2019 she was awarded the ars viva 2020 prize for Visual Arts. The same year she was a fellow of the JUNGE AKADEMIE at the Akademie der Künste Berlin.
Esther Schipper is pleased to announce the representation of Rosa Barba
Rosa Barba was born in 1972 in Agrigento, Italy. She currently lives and works in Berlin.
She studied at the Academy of Media Arts Cologne and has completed her PhD at the Malmö Faculty of Fine and Performing Arts, Lund University in 2018.
She has been a visiting professor at MIT, ACT (Program in Art, Culture and Technology), in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Barba holds a professorship in Fine Arts at the University of the Arts, Bremen.
Rosa Barba engages within the medium of film through a sculptural approach. In her works, Barba creates installations and site-specific interventions to analyze the ways film articulates space, placing the work and the viewer in a new relationship. Questions of composition, physicality of form and plasticity play an important role for the artist as Barba examines the industry of cinema and its staging vis-à-vis gesture, genre, information and documents. Her film works are situated between experimental documentary and fictional narrative. They often focus on natural landscapes and human-made interventions into the environment and explore the relationship of historical records, personal anecdotes, and filmic representation, creating spaces of memory and uncertainty.
Book Launch with Liam GillickMuseo Madre, Naples Wednesday, September 9, 2020 at 6.30 pm www.madrenapoli.it
On Wednesday September 9, at 18.30, the Museo Madre will present the new publication by Liam Gillick: Standing On Top of a Building: Films 2008-2019 published in June 2020 by Edizioni Madre and arte’m.
After an introduction by the president of the Fondazione Donnaregina per le arti contemporanee, Laura Valente, Liam Gillick will be joined in conversation with the curators, Alberto Salvadori and Andrea Viliani.
The publication is the first retrospective dedicated exclusively to Liam Gillick’s film production.