Adrian Paci: Lives in Transit at Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal

Adrian Paci: Lives in Transit
February   6–April 27, 2014Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal
185, rue Sainte-Catherine Ouest
Montréal (Québec) H2X 3X5

Curators: Adrian Paci; Marie Fraser, guest   curator; and Marta Gili, Director of the Jeu de PaumeThe Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal (MAC) is starting the year off with   a Québec and Canadian first: the exhibition Adrian Paci: Lives in Transit.   To introduce the public to the work of this well-known Albanian-born artist   who has lived in Milan since 1997, the MAC is presenting a selection of his   most important pieces since the late 1990s. Comprising video works and   installations, as well as sculptures and paintings, this solo show will run   from February 6 to April 27.

Adrian Paci: Lives in Transit
This show featuring works produced since the late 1990s provides a   sense of the great humanity that characterizes the art of Adrian Paci.   Through the tensions he introduces in these pieces between the real and the   fictional, tangible and political, conflictual and fabulous, he applies a   present-day sensibility to overarching themes that have been present   throughout time, such as identity, memory, ritual and loss. In creating   narratives where much remains unsaid, he invites us to become personally   engaged in his work and to fill in the spaces left blank.

Speaking about his work, the artist recently told the newspaper Libération,   “I think every piece arises out of a desire to build a bridge between   what you have already done and a territory you are discovering. An artist’s   body of work is a living body that needs to grow, to develop. Mounting an   exhibition like this one is thus an opportunity to consider this body in its   complexity and try to understand its moods, its needs, its forms and its   weaknesses.”

The work that brought Paci widespread public recognition, Home to Go (2001),   is a marble montage of the artist’s naked body carrying a ceramic-tiled roof   strapped to his back; this emblematic piece speaks of dislocation, identity   and hybridity. In Vajtojca (Mourner, 2002), which depicts a funeral   wake, Paci makes himself the subject of an elegy whose powerful, stirring   words are sung by a professional mourner. The Encounter (2011) takes   place in Sicily, in front of the church of San Bartolomeo, where hundreds of   people are lined up to shake the artist’s hand, in a personal encounter   between the individual and the collectivity. The Column (2013),   the artist’s latest video, produced specially for the exhibition, documents   the fascinating sea voyage of a “factory boat” that left China   loaded with a block of marble that would be carved on the voyage by five   Chinese craftsmen and would reach its destination…in the form of a column.   The video installation titled Last Gestures (2009) poetically and   eloquently evokes a bride-to-be’s final moments with her family. This work   was purchased by the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal in 2011, with   support from the National Bank Private Wealth 1859 Collectors Symposium 2011.   In Albanian Stories (1997), the artist’s first video, Paci   captures his three-year-old daughter telling her dolls fairytales the way all   little girls do, but with the difference that hers mix up animals, fictional   characters and actual soldiers, bearing poignant and unique testimony to war   and exile. In these pieces and the others on view, the intersection of   reality and fable creates an in-between space that opens up onto the   universal.

Adrian Paci: Lives in Transit is a co-production of the Musée d’art   contemporain de Montréal, Jeu de Paume, Paris, and PAC – Padiglione d’Arte   Contemporanea, Milan.

Born in 1969 in Shkodër, Albania, Adrian Paci left Eastern Europe with his   family after the collapse of the Communist regime. He represented Albania at   the Venice Biennale in 1999 and has taken part in numerous group   exhibitions and solo shows over the years.

Source and information:
Wanda Palma, MACM, Head of Public Relations / T +514 847   6232