The MACRO – Museum of Contemporary Art in Rome hosted the first exhibition of the “Forgotten” project. In Pavilion 9A of MACRO Testaccio from April 13th to May 21st 2016 the exhibition Forgotten … (THE EXHIBITION), curated by Alessandra Arpino, promoted by Roma Capitale – Capitoline Superintendence of Cultural Heritage, took place with the patronage of the Embassy of Portugal, of the Casa dell’Architettura in Rome, and the Portuguese Institute of Culture Camões.
From the urban Forgotten project, conceived by Alessandra Arpino and Hugo Dias, born in 2015, with the aim of highlighting the buildings in the central areas of Rome which, for reasons related to the physiological transformation of the city and the habits of its inhabitants, have lost their sociological and functional importance, thus risking to be forgotten, the exhibition “Forgotten … (THE EXHIBITION)” was born.
To talk about the different types of buildings at risk, Forgotten invited the greatest exponents of the Portuguese urban art, offering a novelty in the Capitoline landscape in terms of style and technique, since none of these artists had ever worked in Rome before .
In contrast with the general line of the city of Rome, Forgotten wanted to follow the model of the capital of Lisbon, bringing street art to the center of the city and no longer in the suburbs.
In the previous months, ex-factories, closed cinemas, small stations, abandoned areas and local markets were the subject of artistic actions. These interventions were told in the exhibition through the shots of Paolo Darra. The former Mira-Lanza factory, the Sala Troisi, the San Pietro station and the ex-SIAR area were the exceptional locations for the works of the artists Frederico Draw, Miguel Januário (± MaisMenos ±), Bordalo II and Add Fuel, all strictly filmed by Leonardo Meuti.
The interventions have seen the participation of public and private structures such as Municipalities I, II, XI, XIII as well as the University of Rome La Sapienza, Teatro di Roma, Gruppo Ferrovie dello Stato, Casa del Cinema.
The exhibition has been structured to maintain the duality of the project and, therefore, narrating – on the one hand – a purely urban experience, based on a documentary approach (architectural and sociological) and on the other hand the production of the artists.
The FORGOTTEN BUILDINGS section presented the photographic documentation related to the buildings object of each intervention, analyzing their state of affairs and describing the urban experience through video documentation and motivating their choice through the gaze of some young architects.
The FORGOTTEN… WORDS section allowed to deepen the production of the artist Miguel Januário who, with the project ± MAISMENOS ±, has worked for years to give an artistic value to the written form, as he did to talk about the closed cinemas with the Lights Camera Auction which has shown again in an in-door space with a central installation that refers to the vortex of words and thoughts of street passers-by.
The FORGOTTEN… FACES section allowed Frederico Draw to tell his story through his unmistakable trait characterized by a non-finished that gives lyricism to the subjects represented, exactly as it happened with the portrait of Pier.Paolo.Pasolini that allowed us to tackle the theme of ex-factories.
To Bordalo II was dedicated the FORGOTTEN… NATURE, in which its urban creatures were exposed, denouncing the threat that the era of consumerism brings with it, a denunciation witnessed in Rome by its urban work Uma Cabra created to talk about small stations.
Add Fuel, with FORGOTTEN… TRADITIONS has evoked the elements of the Portuguese tradition by transmigrating it into contemporary hip-hop culture and comparing it with other cultures, just as it did with the work This Connection, talking about disused areas.
FORGOTTEN… PEOPLE instead told the stories of the anonymous subjects represented by Daniel Eime who offered the opportunity for reflection, through its highly refined paper stencils on the local markets that lost that central role with respect to the district and that succumb to the major food distribution chains. The building examined was the Guido Reni market, in the Flaminio district, with the work Taglio.
Artists on the exhibition:
DIOGO MACHADO | Cascais, 1980
Designer and illustrator, combines unreal characters, decorative elements and symmetry to create trompe d’oeil that lead the viewer to believe that the pattern represented is an evocation of medieval tradition; but when approaches and carefully observes the work, discoveres an extremely contemporary composition, light-years away from the traditional “azulejo”. The visual complexity of his creations always requires a double scale of reading: together and in detail, so much that the lack of one of these keys greatly compromises the understanding of the work itself.
FREDERICO SOARES CAMPO | Porto, 1988
Founder architect of PUTRICA, Frederico Draw creates portraits of unknown characters, using the spray as if it were a pencil, to tell about the street faces that he himself photographs. Its unique style, characterized by a non-finished that confers patos, making each wall similar to a block of sketch-paper in which the charcoals are replaced by spray paints. The theatrical intensity of his faces is emphasized by the level of detail of the looks, in stark contrast to the rest of the roughly sketched face.
ARTUR BORDALO | Lisbona, 1987
Irreverent sculptor, Bordalo II transforms urban waste into large bas-reliefs through mixed technique on wooden supports and assemblage of objects. The subjects represented are almost exclusively animals with bright colors and big impact, which serve as a warning to a destiny that risks being adverse to them; threatened by an increasingly cumbersome urban reality. The artist’s works are at the same time a critique towards contemporary society that is not able to see the beauty that can come also from waste materials
MIGUEL JANUÁRIO (± MAISMENOS ±)
MIGUEL JANUÁRIO | Porto, 1981
±MAISMENOS± is a name linked to an artistic project that offers a critical reflection on the social and economic models that regulate contemporary society. Viral, direct and incisive, his programmatic expression is conceptually reduced to an equation of simplicity and contraries: plus/minus, negative/positive, black/white.
DANIEL TEIXEIRA LOPES | Caldas da Rainha, 1986
Delicate and sophisticated designer, he distorts the peculiarity of the stencil technique (simplification of lines), making his unmistakable faces highly expressive through a patient research on the traits and painting several layers only by brushes and exclusively in black and white. His patterns sometimes geometric, other monochromatic, constitute the trait-d’union between the characters depicted and the context in which they are inserted.
Acea, Arte & Comunicazione, Cinescope, Gruppo FS, Hurom, ITC Luigi Einaudi, La Sapienza, Macine, Marco Valenti Web Design, MF Due, Municipio I, Municipio II, Municipio XI, Municipio XII, Neroscuro Caffè, Pausa Gourmet, Ricicloofficina, Trastevere Attiva, Ristorante Tre Pupazzi