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Zero to Infinity: Arte Povera 1962-1972 at the Tate Modern London UK
Reviews

From: Mehmet
Category: Exhibitions
Date: 16 June 2001

Review

Zero to Infinity: Arte Povera 1962-1972 at the Tate Modern London UK until August 19 www.tate.org.uk also Giorgio Morandi

ďContemporary artists continue to operate on ground that was cleared by Arte Povera. To revisit Arte Povera at its moment of genesis is thus to explore the history of the present and the beginning of now.Ē (Richard Flood and Frances Morris the exhibition curators writing in the free pamphlet you get with your ticket)

So now has begun and the present has history. Maybe Arte Povera razed to the ground artís pretensions and left us with our smouldering wasteground. Yet wandering through the dull rooms of neon tubes, stones and other tasteful junk I didnít feel the power of a destructive force, it seemed more like a warehouse full of oversized desk ornaments and inoffensive one-liners. Every time art has sought to escape its traditions it has become more marginal, only when it has embraced the forms of its age has it escaped its mortal fate. Thus Hirst and Emin are more important than Merz(s) and Pistoletto. Italian society between 1962 and 1972 never was like or liked these twigs and wires, how much more appropriate for 1990-2000 Eminís tent and Hirstís shark. We like personal lives and spectacle you see.

My father thought some of the work was ok, but nothing engaged him, he wanted to know how it all got here. I didnít know but tried to answer him with facetious intelligence. And failed. So we went to see Morandi whom I named Moron-di to make it easier to remember. What kind of idiot would paint the same old boring natura morte everday for his whole life? His touch is good and they reminded me of less fierce Gustons. The way things group, and edges continue or break, and colours like purple stand out in all the mid-tones, is gut. Obvious when you think about it but satisfying, the landscapes are not great, but still accurate on Italian light. Congrats Signor Morandi you didnít waste your time.

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