Giulio Paolini’s elegant installations of canvases, windows, fragments of statuary and checkerboards pay tribute to Chardin, Lotto and Velázquez, while also nodding to the stage and to William Shakespeare himself, asking Hamlet’s timeless question in the work, To Be or Not to Be (1994–95), which features a series of canvases radiating across the floor into infinity. Often appearing as if the artist has just left the room – with ghostly imprints of his own face, hands and eyes reappearing throughout the show – the works focus on Paolini’s studio and working processes. Driven by an exploration into the nature of images, the making of art and the role of the artist, Paolini asserts that "to be authentic, a work of art must forget about its author."
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Giulio Paolini, Big Bang, 1997-1998
Plexiglas Volumes, Primed Canvases, chair, miniature objects, clip-on spotlights, sheets of drawing paper, balls of crumpled paper
160 x 250 x 250 cm