Curated by Cloé Perrone
Fondazione Memmo, which has exhibited classical art since 1990, is proud to announce a new exhibition program dedicated to contemporary art. Fondazione Memmo – Arte Contemporanea has been conceived by Fabiana Marenghi Vaselli and Anna d’Amelio and will launch its first exhibition in its new space with a solo show of Sara VanDerBeek, curated by Cloé Perrone.
In line with the new scope of Fondazione Memmo – Arte Contemporanea, Sara VanDerBeek created this site-specific artwork during her first visit to Rome. Through this opportunity, VanDerBeek broadened her ongoing research into the relationship between photography and sculpture, observing the archaeological layers of the city. Her exhibition at Foundation Memmo is reflective of her ongoing exploration of the idea of an “Eternal City” and, more specifically, the relationship between images and objects. Referencing the synthesis of time and culture found in Rome, VanDerBeek focuses on the continual transition that has occurred most dramatically in Rome, but also in all other cities, spaces, objects, and individuals over time.
The exhibition includes a combination of sculptures and images. VanDerBeek photographed in both America and Italy, focusing on surfaces and spaces resonant of human gestures and activity, while abstracting them by a close focus of the camera. The images exist as documents, but with certain works in their scale and color they also oscillate in purpose and form in the relationship to the sculptures. The images at times act as a key to their inspiration – a fragment of an ancient sculpture is pictured in one – and at others they act as background, like a narrative memory superimposing its color upon the monochromatic forms of the sculptures. The sculptures are created primarily in response to VanDerBeek’s experience of the city of Rome and classical Roman art, yet both the sculptures and images explore her ongoing interest in the visual continuum of our existence and in the eternal and universal patterns used by all cultures throughout time.
The concentric forms, primary shapes, and repeating lines used in the sculptures are based upon the patterns of both ancient and contemporary cultures. In their creation and their arrangement in the exhibition space, both the images and the sculptures are intended to feel as though they are shifting from past to present and from present to past.
Sara VanDerBeek was born in Baltimore, Maryland in 1976. She studied at the Cooper Union School in New York. She has had solo shows at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2012); Whitney Museum of American Art (2010); Metro Pictures, New York, Altman Siegel Gallery, San Francisco; and The Approach, London. Her work has been exhibited at the Zabludowicz Collection, London; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Guggenheim, New York and Bilbao; MoMA and ICP, New York. She lives and works in New York.