William Kentridge: New Editions

William Kentridge: New Editions
March 24 – April 21, 2007

William Kentridge recently completed a new suite of five prints titled L’Inesorabile Avanzata with printer Jill Ross at David Krut Workshop, Johannesburg. These works were commissioned by the Olivetti Foundation and will be published over five consecutive weeks in the Italian newspaper, Il Sole 24 Ore.

L’Inesorabile Avanzata:#3 (Massacre of the Innocents) opens the series with a study of Giotto’s anguished mothers from the Arena Chapel Massacre of the Innocents fresco. This print and the second and fourth works in the series use an appropriated newspaper format, fragmented to suggest images and text columns interspersed with snippets of imagery. In L’Inesorabile Avanzata:#2 (Newspaper Unread), Kentridge draws his eye staring out at us, as a witness and chronicler of the events unfolding around him. Cameos of his own gasmask and sextants, and quotations from Picasso’s weeping women are cropped and scattered throughout the implied blocks of text. The central work in the series, L’Inesorabile Avanzata:#5 (Mal d’Afrika), is a foreboding augury, a gasmask on pylon legs with a desolate gaze behind his goggles and a wizened, old elephant’s eye that pricks our consciences. Kentridge draws comparisons between the atrocities committed in the Italian Fascist invasion of Ethiopia 1935/1936, the inaction of the League of Nations at the time, and our own observance of the genocide currently taking place in Darfur. The series closes with, L’Inesorabile Avanzata:#1 (The World), a weary metamorphosis of the gasmask into Atlas carrying the weight of the world on his shoulders, a classic Kentridge image of a burdened figure in profile, rickety legs striding across the landscape. – Kate McCrickard, March 2007

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