maria marshall

May 19 - Jul 30, 2005
via a. stradella 7
Galleria Raffaella Cortese is pleased to announce the first Italian solo show of Maria Marshall, considered to be one of the most interesting British video-artists along with Sam Taylor-Wood, Gillian Wearing, Jane and Louise Wilson and Steve McQueen. 

“When I grow up I want to be a cooker" (1999), Maria Marshall's first video work, provoked great international attention. The work oscillates between an intense psychological impact due to the presence of the young son of the artist chain smoking a cigarette and the extreme sensuality of the image, exacerbated by the absence of sound and the use of loop. This is the beginning of a series of works in which the artist analyses the world of childhood and the intrusion of the adult in the innocent language of children. 

Maria Marshall’s children, often the main actors in her videos, can be seen smoking, drowning or lying abandoned in a cell. Every situation is just a visual illusion, the result of the digital manipulation of the images that manage to disturb the audience provoking tension, sense of uneasiness, but also curiosity and desire to discover the secrets of the story. The exhibition shows three recent videos that present an explicit political bent, balanced, according to the artist, by the “escapism of the cinematic world”. 

Lollipop, In 200 days I will be 11... Maria Marshall’s son plays the part of Clint Eastwood in Sergio Leone’s film “The Good, The Bad and The Ugly”. The film is 4,5 seconds long, running on a continuous loop while the music composed by Damon Albarn, 8 minutes long, accompanies the viewer throughout an imaginary more complex story. 

1941 Stearman is based on Marshall’s reflections about young kamikazes. The artist wonders what their feelings would be in the moment of suicide. Her answer is that they would simply like to go back to the safety of home. In the film a warplane writes the word kill in the sky, but just a few minutes before the suicide, the pilot changes his mind. The story interrupts and the plane turns back on the traces he left in the sky. The Emperor and his clothes, from 2004, once again presents one of Marshall’s sons as the protagonist; the young boy obsessively gets dressed and undressed under a hot middle-eastern sun, moving at the rhythm of president Bush’s speech to Saddam Hussein (48 hours to leave Iraq). 

Maria Marshall was born in 1966 in Bombay. She lives and works in London. Last solo show: Centre pour l’Image Contemporaine, Geneva. Last group exhibition: “Dimensione Follia”, Galleria Civica d’Arte Contemporanea, Trento.