Sono un pirata Sono un signore (i am pirate and a gentleman)

For the 5th edition of Contemporary Art Day – organized by AMACI, the Italian Association of Contemporary Art Museums – Pavillion of Contemporary Art of Milan open for the first time its doors to a very young artist with a big show that tells all ConiglioViola’s world. An artistic name which is active in all fields of the contemporary art scene – from video art to photography, from electronic music to experimental theatre, from net.art to performance – ConiglioViola rapidly garnered public and critical attention for projects that cross the thresholds of contemporary art, in a transversal approach that invades all areas of creative expression. The group’s many projects are united by an ironic and tentacular investigation of the increasingly uncertain borders between the various compartments of contemporary culture and in particular between mass and élite culture. Sono un pirata / Sono un signore (I am a pirate / I am a gentleman) draws on the Pirate Attack on the Venice Biennale carried out by ConiglioViola in 2007, in which it fired 52 cannon shots against the venue of the prestigious contemporary art event, from on board a giant pirate winged rabbit. This spectacular and symbolic action has been chosen as a manifesto to define the role that ConiglioViola plays on the art scene.

The exhibition at the PAC, designed to be a meta-work in itself, unwinds in a series of rooms, each dedicated to a different project. The visitor is led through the show as if undergoing a transformation in relation to the works and the space, in a sort of alchemical initiation rite. ConiglioViola, the electronic heir of the White Rabbit, thus leads the visitor, a novice Alice, through its fantasy universe, inhabited by both classic creatures and contemporary monsters, deceptively reassuring and subtly cruel. The exhibition (visited by almost 10.000 people in only ten days) examines all the stages in the creative evolution of this “Renaissance workshop in the digital era”, from the underground period (2001-2004) characterised exclusively by works of net.art, to the major project (Reclaim Your Square Roots) (2004-2006), the groups’ most “pop culture” work which explores the aesthetic and pop music of the 1980s. As well as the project Nous Deux (2007), a poetic and melancholic escape to the moon, the enigmatic Rebus with Achille Bonito Oliva, and the installation Fine Primo Tempo (End of the First Half) which interprets the track “Ci sarà” by Al Bano and Romina Power in an eschatological key.
Sono un pirata / Sono un signore (I am a pirate / I am a gentleman) is the title of this first roundup of previous episodes, an ironic slogan which perfectly encapsulates the role of elegant “outlaw” that ConiglioViola has carved out for itself on the contemporary art scene, on its unique and entirely eccentric path.
ConiglioViola were so far the youngest artists that the PAC has ever dedicated a solo exhibition to.

installation view

The exhibition catalogue – published by SilvanaEditoriale and personally edited by Brice Coniglio – includes essays by Antonio Arevalo, , Achille Bonito Oliva, , Maurizio Ferraris, , , Domenico Quaranta and Laura Serani.

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