Demetrio Paparoni brings his creative expertise and vision to Glasstress 2011. Here, he explains the undeniable ties between art, architecture, and design.
Demetrio on Glasstress 2011
The theme of this year’s exhibition is the complex relationship that ties art, design and architecture together in an age thought to have moved beyond modernism. Comparing the opinions of various curators, Glasstress addresses this issue through glass sculptures specially made by major artists on the contemporary scene and through objects and sculptures made by designers, whose research was influenced by the formal aspect of the use of the object.
Putting glassworks that respond to such profoundly different concepts next to each other in the same show is the equivalent of reviving critical issues that are far from resolved: What makes an object that is formally conditioned by its function a work of art? To respond to the spirit of the time, must a work refer only to itself? Can we say today that the function of a design object is itself enough to make the work alien to the spirit of the time regardless of its formal qualities? These questions, which are the basis of the 2011 Glasstress project, call into question the notion of “art for art’s sake” so dear to the 20th century avant-gardes.
Glasstress 2011 offers the viewer food for thought about complex themes. It poses the need for a critical reassessment of the main tenets of modernism, the majority of which were still very much present in the art of the eighties and questioned in the next decade by the second generation of post-modernism. Glasstress 2011 demonstrates just how topical these themes still are and the need to explore them further.
About Demetrio Paparoni
Demetrio Paparoni was born in Siracusa in 1954. He lives in Milan. An art critic, essayist and exhibition curator, he is the author of monographs and books on contemporary art theory. In the early 1980s he created the Tema Celeste magazine, which he directed until April 2000. He was, among other things, commissioner for the Italian pavilion of the Venice Biennale in 1993. He taught the History of Contemporary Art at the Faculty of Architecture in Catania from 1996 to 2008.