Imagining The Fluidity Of Permanence (an exchange between a 21st Century artist and a 17th Century building)
Curated by L. Mikelle Standbridge
Casa Regis – Center For Culture And Contemporary Art, Italy
April 17th – May 30, 2022
Details of visits leading up to the opening:
-il weekend F.A.I. (il 26/27 marzo). Register through F.A.I. webpage.
-Slow Art Day (an in-depth encounter with the artwork and the artist, an afternoon moderated by Milan based curator Erika Lacava (who has a degree in The Philosophy of Aestherics). Tea in the garden. (2 aprile ore 15 alle 17,30). It is forseen to stay together for the whole afternoon.
Opening reception/vernissage: 17 aprile (dalle ore 15 alle 18)
General opening: 18 aprile (dalle ore 15 alle 18)
Future visits by appointment, typically Saturdays. We aim to facilitate all visitors. The show remains open until May 30.
Please reserve your space for any or all of the events. We abide by the law in force at the time for Green Passes.
In preparation for Alice Sheppard Fidler’s solo exhibition at Casa Regis – Center For Culture And Contemporary Art, the artist will first be doing a month long residency. In part she will be producing site-specific installations that are generated from local and found materials connected to the building. In part she will be installing work that travels from one repurposed location to another in search of altered meanings and narratives inherent to new contexts.
A central theme throughout her work is architecture as a metaphor for an enduring presence, shifting under time and pressure. Not dissimilar to other buildings that Alice has worked in, Casa Regis was once a nobleman’s house, then a nun’s convent, then a place of abandonment and loss, and now an artist’s venue.
Sliding into the area between disuse and reuse of a building, the artist highlights the human experience. Alice identifies a rigid thing, be it conceptual (a rule, a law, a social code, an idea) or be it physical (a structure, a hard surface, a wall) and then she starts working on the soft space that runs around and over the rigidity, like skin over bone. Her soft spaces are often materialized in the form of cloth or underscored by the movement and presence of the human body as she assembles. The artist also collaborates with sound artists or improv performance artists to explore the blockages or available openings in the space before concluding per pieces.
Permanent structures are “the pillars of society” and Alice’s work, in response, depicts a thoughtful entanglement of obligation, expectation, conformity, vulnerability, struggle, and resistance.
However, these concepts are significant in so far as you first hear her ode to the materials. The bricks, the velvet, the sand, the galvanized steel buckets…the irony of surfaces and the uneasy placement of elements, that is how the work is expressing content. We might even borrow a thought from Susan Sontag’s “Against Interpretation” where she warns that over intellectualization and interpretation is “at the expense of energy and sensual capability”. The idea being to experience more immediately what is in front of us. A viewer must truly sense and feel the pressure, the humanness, the question mark in the work. The visceral reaction generates but simultaneously outweighs the concept and it is precisely this development and negation that renders the work profound.