exhibitions

ana mendieta

May 22 - Sep 15, 2013
via a. stradella 7
Raffaella Cortese is proud to present in the space of Via Stradella 7 the solo show by Ana Mendieta, currently on show with an important retrospective also at Castello di Rivoli in Turin.

Cuban exile, Mendieta studies at Iowa State University, where she comes in contact with feminist movements and embraces the ideals of feminism. She realizes a personal synthesis of Body Art and Land Art, by undermining Land-artistsʼ majestic actions through the introduction of the human body in the landscape. In those years, she realizes ritual performances, photographs and sculptures, steeping her own body into nature, thus emphasizing her physical and spiritual link with the Earth. On show, her first works from the Seventies, where she confronts herself with the themes of discrimination, sexual violence and death. After reading about the rape and murder of a girl attending her university campus, Mendieta puts up the brutal event using her own body: “ Iʼm working with my body and my blood”, she declares. (Untitled (Rape Performance), 1973 and Sweating Blood, 1973.

Mendieta borrows symbols and ritual practices from American, African and European native cultures, combining them with natural elements and “primitive” sacrificial rites, associated to the “santeria cubana". In the "Siluetas" series, she uses blood, water, earth and fire to build up shapes which remember her own body. The silhouettes are burned on wood, shaped by mounds of earth, grass, gun powder or flowers; they float on streams, erupt like volcanos or blend in with the landscape, as shown in the exhibited videos. Mendieta has expressed with her work “the immediacy of life and the eternity of nature”.
Ana Mendieta (LʼHavana, Cuba, 1948, New York 1985).

Among the major solo shows dedicated to the Cuban-American artist, we mention: the travelling exhibition Ana Mendieta: Earth Body, Sculpture and Performance 1972-1985, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C.; Des Moines Art Center, Des Moines and Miami Art Museum, Miami (2004); in 2002 Ana Mendieta (1948-1985) – Body Tracks, Neues Museum Luzern, Lucerne and Fries Museum, Leeuwarden; Ana Mendieta Selected Works, Kunst-Werke Berlin KW Institute of Contemporary Art, Berlin; in 1996 Ana Mendieta (1948–1985), Helsinki City Art Museum, Helsinki; Uppsala Konstmuseum, Uppsala; The Living Art Museum, Reykjavik and Museum of Contemporary Art, Roskilde; Ana Mendieta, Centro Galego de Arte Contemporanea, Santiago de Compostela; Kusthalle Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf; Fundació Antoni Tápies, Barcellona; Museo de Arte Contemporaneo de Monterrey, Monterrey and Museo Tamayo, Mexico City; in 1994 Ana Mendieta: The Late Works, Cleveland Center for Contemporary Art, Cleveland and Artothèque de Caen, Caen; She got Love, Castello di Rivoli (2013).