Industry Updates

Jan Fabre’s Knight of Despair / Warrior of Beauty Exhibition starts in Hermitage State Museum On 22d October 2016

01.11.2016

On 22d October 2016 the State Hermitage opens a major exhibition of one of the most fertile and important artists of his generation Jan Fabre Knight of Despair / Warrior of Beauty curated by himself together with Dmitry Ozerkov, the Head of Contemporary Art at the State Hermitage Museum and Barbara De Coninck, Artistic Director.

Jan Fabre has created a number of new works especially for this exhibition numbering more than two hundred artworks. Jan Fabre (Antwerp, 1958), a visual artist, theatre artist and author, uses his works to speculate in a loud and tangible manner about life and death, physical and social transformations, as well as about the cruel and intelligent imagination which is present in both animals and humans.

For more than thirty-five years Jan Fabre has been one of the most innovative and important figures on the international contemporary art scene. As a visual artist, theatre maker and author he hascreated a highly personal world with its own rules and laws, as well as its own characters, symbols, and recurring motifs. Influenced by research carried out by the entomologist Jean-Henri Fabre (1823-1915), he became fascinated by the world of insects and other creatures at a very young age. In the late seventies, while studying at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts and the Municipal Institute of Decorative Arts and Crafts in Antwerp, he explored ways of extending his research to the domain of the human body. His own performances and actions, from 1976 to the present, have been essential to his artistic journey. Jan Fabre’s language involves a variety of materials and is situated in a world of his own, populated by bodies in a balance between the opposites that define natural existence. Metamorphosis is a key concept in any approach to Jan Fabre’s body of thought, in which human and animal life are in constant interaction. He unfolds his universe through his author’s texts and nocturnal notes, published in the volumes of his Night Diary. As a consilience artist, he has merged performance art and theatre. Jan Fabre has changed the idiom of the theatre by bringing real time and real action to the stage. After his historic eight-hour production «This is theatre like it was to be expected and foreseen» (1982) and four-hour production «The power of theatrical madness» (1984), he raised his work to a new level in the exceptional and monumental «MountOlympus. To glorify the cult of tragedy, a 24-hour performance» (2015).

The exhibition has been organized by the Contemporary Art Department at the State Hermitage in a frame of the Hermitage 20/21 Project. It is under patronage of V St. Petersburg International Cultural Forum. sourse of  text and picture: hermitagemuseum.org

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