Durata di cera (Was man aus Liebe tut) / La notte del 17 novembre

Conversation Piece | Part VIII, Fondazione Memmo, Rome (IT), December 2022 – March 2023

Pauline Curnier Jardin participates in the exhibition Conversation Piece | Part VIII with a site-specific installation centred on a series of six glazed ceramic bas-reliefs created for the Luna Kino project. This was inspired by the Luna-Lichtspiegel cinema, founded in 1914 and maintained until after the Second World War by a group of women.

The artist has proposed a “transfiguration” of the architectural space around the bas-reliefs. In this way, an intervention on the lights and colours of the room where the works are displayed has created a dark universe, which is evocative of our way of imagining lunar landscapes, as well as referring to ashes and rubble. From the dark background of the bas-reliefs, some female figures emerge who seem to be illuminated by a silvery lunar light and who wear masks that refer to the phases of the moon. These figures are inspired by the Trümmerfrauen, the women who removed the rubble from the streets of bombed German cities, photos of whom were circulated in an attempt to affirm the German people’s sense of identity and desire for redemption after the war.

In the same room, there is also an installation conceived by the artist for the occasion, made up of a sculpture surmounted by candles and a drawing created through a combustion process. The sculpture, which occupies the center of the room, refers to the trolleys used on train tracks to load debris and rubble: the candles, which take up the colors of the bas-reliefs, refer to a ritual in progress or which has just been done, of which the design, from vaguely anthropomorphic physiognomy, it seems the direct emanation. Pauline Curnier Jardin’s intervention forces us to look at different worlds and at the condition of women in history, as well as in reference to current events, reminding us of the resourcefulness of women whose roles and stories have been forgotten or distorted.

Views of the exhibition Conversation Piece, Fondazione Memmo, Rome (IT)
Curated by Marcello Smarrelli
Photos: Daniele Molajoli

Was man aus Liebe tut, 2022
Six glazed ceramics 40 × 50 cm each
Courtesy: the artist and ChertLüdde, Berlin

Durata di cera (Was man aus Liebe tut) / La notte del 17 novembre, 2022
Installation, steel, wax, pigments, coal on plaster
Variable dimensions (sculpture: l346 x b161 x h87 cm)
Courtesy: the artist, Ellen de Bruijne Projects, Amsterdam and ChertLüdde, Berlin