“For me, disobedience is the only rule of art” – Corriere.it

out Maurizio Cattelan and Anish Kapoor

The artist in conversation with Maurizio Cattelan. “We are not manufacturers of luxury goods. Our role is to be radical in a world that has forgotten what it means to be radical.

Hello Anish. I know you start work at 9:30 every morning. It’s true? But what do you do when you wake up?

“I wake up at 6:30 am. After breakfast I meditate. I start work at 9:30 am and work until 6:00 pm – a normal working day ».

How do you spend your free time?

“Read, watch TV, go for a walk, play with my son.”

The last exhibit (possibly not yours) you saw?

“Pine in the Doge’s Palace in Venice”.

I thought you were a sculptor, instead you paint… (Maurizio laughs)

“I go where work takes me. For the past 40 years I’ve been painting and in some ways they’ve gotten more attention ».

Do you have a teacher other than Giorgione, Tiziano, Antonello da Messina?

“All you said and many, many others: Barnet Newman; Picasso; Walter benjamin; Julia Kristeva; Paul Celan; my dear friend Homi Bhabha, and so on.’

What is the creative process for you?

“I have a file. The work is constantly and continuously derived from practice. I don’t believe in good ideas. All ideas are good, I try to stick to the principle “first idea, best idea”. My job is to find out what is hidden or semi-unknown within me. The unknown – known. I do at least one job a day ».

How is the operating structure of your studio organized? How many people work with you on your works?

“I have 23 people in the studio – about ten work in the studio and the rest are in administration. I work alone in a separate room. Sculpture is a long process ».

Do you work more with visions or materials? Where does your project start and how does it come about?

«Alchemy, vision and materials. I once asked a quantum physicist what the quantum difference was between painting on a subway train and painting on a large work of art. He couldn’t give me an answer, but I know that painting on a large work of art is a psychological matter and different from painting on a subway. In other words, it has undergone an alchemical transformation. The mixture of psyche and matter is the miracle that we humans can perform and that we have forgotten that we can do».

Does the purchase of the Palazzo Manfrin have something to do with a personal need to secure a future for your works? Were you afraid of being forgotten? Why did you choose Venice?

“I don’t care what happens after I die. I bought Manfrin for fun, nonsense, but I love Venice ».

Is it true that your Venetian exhibition is entirely geared towards depicting the contrast between light and dark, presence and absence, idea and reality? Do you think you succeeded?

“No valid exhibition focuses on one thing, I have nothing to say. As an artist, I have no messages to send. Art with messages is devalued by its need to say something. Great art brings meaning by interacting with the viewer. I believe that over the years the enduring reality of a universe of opposites has emerged – day and night, male and female, good and bad, full and empty. Tell me, dear Maurizio, did I succeed? ».

What is your absolute black really?

“This material comes from nanotechnology. It’s the blackest material in the universe, blacker than a black hole. It is a substance that is applied to a surface and then placed in a reactor. This process causes the particles to stand up like fibers on velvet. For comparison, if a particle is 1 meter wide, it is 300 meters high, and as a result, light is trapped between the particles and cannot escape. This nanomaterial absorbs 99.8% of all light. There were two great discoveries in the Renaissance. One is of course the perspective that puts the focus on the individual and the other is the folding. The fold is the essence of being – the body draped in the dress or fold. If this black material is placed on a crease, the crease disappears. You can’t see it anymore So I think this project takes from me the object beyond being… Obviously I’m referring to Malevich’s Black Square and his claim that it’s a four-dimensional statement. Art must become mythological reality. There is so much mystery in the confusion between eye, heart and mind ».

Is the meaning of your work for you linked to the viewer’s gaze? I am asking you because years ago a visitor fell into your Vantablack work «Descent into Limbo». have you become friends

«The view of the viewer is decisive. I don’t make art for the viewer, but I am aware of how the viewer completes the cycle of the artwork. We cannot look without identifying ourselves, because we look with love, hate, desire, disgust, admiration, etc. There is no other way. Because art is mythological and not about the object itself, it plays with these things within us. Descent into the limbo It’s a deep hole in the ground that looks like an object on the ground. It is a room so filled with darkness that it is no longer empty. It’s a room full of darkness. This guy didn’t believe what he saw in front of him. Although it was said that it was dangerous. He jumped in… No, we’re not friends, but I’d love to meet him. Kant says that the sublime is fraught with risk. Self-loss is our greatest fear. Stand on the edge and jump … fly or die ».

Why are you obsessed with the non-object?

“In a world full of objects, it is the opposite of an object. The interior is larger than what it contains. Close your eyes and ask if the space you are occupying fits the physical limit of your body. Our imaginary selves are made up of invisible objects, and I’ve found that the real objective world is also made up of the semi-real or the unreal, the non-object.

How do you become an artist? how did you do it

“To be crazy, deeply anti-authoritarian and unwilling to play along. I wrote on the walls of my office: You do not agree – disobey – deny. Society is mistress, don’t be a slave, you disagree, be an artist and tell the world to take him to this place ».

How important is the technology compared to the idea?

“It doesn’t matter. But ideas don’t matter either. Art lives in a space between idea and non-idea. In a universe full of objects, objects that can be named and understood, art can rarely suggest anything unknowable or unnameable. The is worth a lifetime’s work ».

Who decides what art is today? Is there a difference from before?

“We are in a deep cultural crisis. All formal territories have been transcended. Everything is allowed. This causes confusion. Unfortunately, we have ignorant crazies who call themselves curators and seem to run our museums. Museums are confused, they have lost the means by which to express aesthetic and poetic judgements, and so they travel the world collecting art here and there, a form of exoticism. Guided by politically correct and extremely mundane programs. All this while maintaining the white man’s hierarchy in relation to historical events. What a nonsense. We artists must refuse to be part of this ignorant cultural neocolonialism».

How much is your research conditioned by the needs of the market or how much is it a totally unconscious, unconscious, free act?

«The market is the enemy of the artists. Working for the market means the death of the artist and of art, but money is one of the mythological properties of art ».

At the house of Asterion, Borges explains that the terrible Minotaur is not (just) a monster, but is actually a victim of Theseus. Should art do that to you? Turn common sense on its head?

“Yes. The great psychic visionary Sigmund Freud led us to know again what the ancients knew, that all monsters are victims, that psychic language is at the same time the language of facts and counter-facts ».

Do you think that art is in a crisis today? If yes why? Or do you think that art can really produce something new?

“As I said, the culture is in a deep crisis. We have become slaves of capitalism. We must always keep in mind that we artists are not manufacturers of luxury goods. Our role is to be RADICAL in a world that has forgotten what radicals can be. How is it possible that the radical is for sale? Once consumed, art can no longer be radical. All darkness has been taken from us. We enslave our children to capitalism by robbing them of their creativity and individuality. Disobedience is the only way. Unless we refuse to follow the rules, we are trapped in conformity. The human mind is wonderful and full of invention, but in the 21st century it is now a slave. ARTISTS, PREPARE ».

Which living artists do you envy?

“Those who tell the world to go to hell. Those who don’t play.”

Maurizio Cattelan, Anish Kapoor © Marsilio Arte

June 22, 2022 (change June 22, 2022 | 23:28)

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