Pursuing Unity Between Art and Life: A Retrospective of Greek Artist Jannis Kounellis
Why We Recommend it
A major figure in the Arte Povera movement in Italy that strove to offset the fading of memory by juxtaposing the old and new, Kounellis’ practice encompassed a wide range of materials and mediums, converging paint, sculpture and performance.
Hailing from Piraeus, Athens, Kounellis (1936 – 2017) identified as a Greek person, but an Italian artist – having moved to Rome in 1956 where he enrolled in the Academy of Fine Arts.
In 1967, he participated in the Arte Povera group exhibition organised by its leading figure Germano Celant in Genoa. Kounellis was quickly recognised for his sensual take on the movement that strove to contrast the new and the old.
Arte Povera was the most significant and influential avant-garde movement to emerge in Europe in the 1960s. The artists often used commonplace materials that might evoke a pre-industrial age, and were interested in themes of materiality and physicality, alongside that of the passing of time.
This exhibition is structured as a small retrospective that offers to the viewer an overview of Kounellis’ most iconic works from the decades that go from 1983 until 2012, demonstrating his attempts to unite art and life.