Rudolf Stingel - Contemporary Art Evening Sale London Saturday, June 28, 2008 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Galleria Massimo de Carlo, Milan

  • Catalogue Essay

    Rudolf Stingel usually employs a palette of ubiquitous materials - wallpaper, Styrofoam, carpets, and rubber amongst others in a nod towards the legacy of arte povera, seeking to demystify the figure of the artist and the artistic process. In Untitled c.2006 a series of repeated units initially appear to be identical elements forming a homogenous whole. Upon closer inspection the idiosyncrasies come to light, signs of corruption in the production process and human input that render them in unique parts of a unique whole or rather a stage in his organic process of production. Representation, abstraction, process, pattern, performance, subjectivity and the audience are all his subjects. In his texts on Stingel, Italian curator Francesco Bonami mentions of the artists writ like gestures as a redefinition of ‘what painting can be, what it has been, and what it is.' Having been raised in the Italian Tyrol exposed Stingel to the unusual aesthetic hybridity of rococo and baroque patterns.
    "...Stingel's absorption of the vocabulary of baroque arguably articulates baroque's tendency toward instability...As contemplations on the problems of the modern they echo Friederich Nietzsche's understanding of baroque as intrinsically decadent; ‘it appears whenever a great age of art enters a decline...[it's appearance is to be] greeted with great sadness because it heralds nightfall.'" (C. Iles, Surface Tension in Rudolf Stingel by Rudolf Stingel, New Haven, 2001.)

  • Artist Biography

    Rudolf Stingel

    Italian • 1956

    Rudolf Stingel came to prominence in the late 1980s for his insistence on the conceptual act of painting in a context in which it had been famously declared dead. Despite the prevailing minimalist and conceptual narrative of the time, the Italian-born artist sought to confront the fundamental aspirations and failures of Modernist painting through the very medium of painting itself. While his works do not always conform to the traditional definitions of painting, their attention to surface, space, color and image provide new and expanded ways of thinking about the process and "idea" of painting. Central to his multifarious and prolific oeuvre is an examination of the passage of time and the probing of the fundamental questions of authenticity, meaning, hierarchy, authorship and context by dislocating painting both internally and in time and space. Stingel is best known for his wall-to-wall installations, constructed of fabric or malleable Celotex sheets, as well as his seemingly more traditional oil-on-canvas paintings.

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Oil and enamel on canvas.
38 x 52 cm. (15 x 20 1/2 in).
Signed and dated 'Stingel 2006' on the reverse.

£100,000 - 150,000 ‡ ♠

Contemporary Art Evening Sale

29 June 2008, 5pm