Swiss artist Ugo Rondinone has built a reputation for himself as an artist who doesn’t stay in one place very long. Exploring a variety of themes through panting, installation, video, sculpture and drawing, Rondinone seems to use his art as a way to explore context, shaping his exhibitions and pieces to interact with their location on a metaphorical level.
Such is the case with “Nude,” a site-specific installation at The Cycladic Art Museum in Athens, Greece. Separating off one wing of the gallery with a wooden partition, Rondinone turns it into an otherworldly space of refuge, populated by seven sculptures of dancers in various states of repose. Cast from wax molds of human models, the lifelike statues are frozen between movements, made even more eerie by the apparent separation of joints among some of them.
Given the contents of the rest of the museum, Rondinone’s installation stands as a comparison to classic Greek modes of human figuration, and calls conventions of beauty and artistic value to the forefront. At the same time, his works serve to crucially alter the structure of their exhibition space, placed with an aesthetic sense akin to that of Zen rock gardens. Exploring the nature of space and location through the placement of the human form, Rondinone creates interesting dialogues on our presence in the world, and what it means for our surroundings.
“Nude” is on view until October 15th.