Catalytic Cattelan

Curator Franklin Sirmans%26#8217; greatest gift to The Menil Collection before he left for a new post at the Los%26nbsp; Angeles County Museum of Art will be this month%26#8217;s opening of the solo show %26#8220;Maurizio Cattelan.%26#8221; This is the Italian-born, Venice Biennale%26#8211;exhibited artist%26#8217;s first one-person exhibition in the U.S. since 2003 %26#8212; and Sirmans%26#8217; curatorial coup. %26#8220;Cattelan%26#8221; offers an in-depth exploration of the nuanced contemporary alchemist, whose foundations are in the Italian Art Povere movement while intersecting the 20th-century traditions of Surrealism, Dada and Pop. For the Menil, Cattelan has cooked up surprises emphasizing sculpture while literally %26#8220;raiding the icebox%26#8221; in the tradition of Andy Warhol %26#8212; who curated a 1969 show at the de Menils%26#8217; request that incorporated treasures from their collection, shown at RISD and Rice University%26#8217;s art museum (which the de Menils supported before founding their own museum). Instead of an exhibition in one main gallery, watch for Cattelan to infiltrate unexpected places throughout the Menil, including the roof. There%26#8217;s even startling taxidermy (involving a horse) that took months to configure, serving up wit and irony while commenting on the contemporary world order %26#8212; and creating images that seep into our consciousness. February 12 through August 15 at The Menil Collection;
Image: Maurizio Cattelan%26#8217;s Untitled, 2003. Courtesy Rachofsky Collection, Dallas, TX %26#169; Maurizio Cattelan; Photo: Michael Bodycomb.

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