CABARET VOLTAIRE: Francesco Jodice
Gazelli Art House is delighted to announce the first UK solo exhibition of multi-award-winning artist and photographer Francesco Jodice.
Following Jodice’s solo museum retrospective at CAMERA — Centro Italiano per la Fotografia, Cabaret Voltaire will highlight four separate bodies of work all encompassing participation, networking, anthropometry, storytelling and investigation. Each of these series investigates particular regions or precise moments in our recent history with an aim to answer the artist’s social and cultural questions and contemporary geopolitical scenario. Jodice is intrigued by what is about to happen, what paradoxically has already happened: the emergence of a new phenomenon in culture is the aftereffect of something that we have, more less consciously, premeditated.
The gallery will feature a selection from What We Want, an ongoing photography series of 150 metropolises around the world that Jodice has been making since 1996. The gradually expanding archive is composed of photos and text with the aim of comparing landscapes of those countries undergoing economic, political change, blending together the languages of humanist photography, geopolitics, topography, conceptual art, montage and writing, in the quest for a comprehensive view. This project acts as a global atlas in which physical and political geography begin to drift apart, looking at the roots of a growing tendency to transform space dependent on the fears and desires of the people who inhabit it, rather than finding ways of adapting to its primary features.
The 2015 film, Atlante, will be playing in the small room on the ground floor. The moving imagery alternates between The Farnese Atlas, archival footage of World War I, life in the US suburbs in the ‘50s, and American advertisements from the ‘80s. Through synecdoche, the film blends together the paradigms and contradictions of the Short Century, prompting reflection on the decline of the West.
Sunset Boulevard, Jodice’s most recent project, will be displayed on the first floor of the gallery. This body of work investigates the last great Western empire. Jodice rediscovers and captures ‘The American West’ with traces of its magical geological history and recent colonisation such as Hollywood, nuclear testing, and militarisation. The works aim to understand the American ‘long century’ and present an archaeology of the present that is already past.
On select evenings, the gallery will be screening Citytellers, which comprises three films, shot in Dubai*, Aral* and São Paulo* respectively. The trilogy explores the transformations of today’s megalopolises, particularly in terms of new social, political, economic and religious phenomena, and observes the changes that have taken place and reflect on questions like self-organisation, the disappearance of the great idealistic movements of the 20th century, environmental disasters, and new forms of slavery. The films use the grammar of documentary, the aesthetics of cinema and the principles of storytelling to build a system of channels between contemporary art and mass communication and to offer a clear and simple view of a specific phenomenon: the imminent future that was already present in the most recent past.
The aim of Jodice’s practice, and what is clear from these works, is to understand the world’s constant changes and share these discoveries through his art.
Francesco Jodice, Atlante - Atlas, 2015
Francesco Jodice, Sunset Boulevard, Arizona, Picacho Butte #013, 2014
Francesco Jodice, Sunset Boulevard, Monument Valley, #015, 2014
Francesco Jodice, What We Want, Hong Kong, T46, 2006
Francesco Jodice, What We Want, Bethlehem, T62, 2010
Francesco Jodice, What We Want, Normandy, T30, 2000