Thursday, May 15, 2008

Traces du Sacré

Traces du Sacré is the mega, multi-disciplinary exhibition that opened on May 7th at the Pompidou Center, Curated by Jean de Loisy and Angela Lampe, this grand endeavor brings together over 350 works of art by nearly 200 artists beginning from the 19th century up to present day and as diverse as Casper David Friedrich, Hilma Auf de Klimt, Malevich, William Burroughs, Barnett Newman, Mounir Fatmi and Maurizo Cattelan. The exhibition is arranged thematically under such subtitles as “Apocalypses,” “Nostalgia of the Infinite,” “Doors of Perception,” and “Resonances of the Archaic.”

Throughout the ages there have always been connections/influences between art, religion, spirituality, philosophy, but this became less and less so throughout the 20th century as the world modernized and globalized. As the press release states, “The goal of the exhibition is thus to explore the significance of the survival of such questioning throughout the twentieth century, and to show that it continues to fuel the invention of contemporary artistic forms, and as such represents an essential key to the understanding of modern art.
” The one easy critique to make is that the curators took liberty with the subject matter, stretching interpretations to include work that doesn’t really fit into the context, the most obvious of which, in my opinion was the inclusion of the Hans Namuth films of Pollack doing his drip paintings. But it is a rich and intriguing exhibition and be sure to allow yourself a good couple of hours to make it through.

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