Adrian Tranquilli. Giorni di un futuro passato

Museo Archeologico di Napoli
Days of future past
Curated by Eugenio Viola
Coordination of Marco De Gemmis
02.03.2016 – 06.06.2016

On Saturday, April the 2nd at 12 am in the spaces of the Archeologic Museum in Naples the retrospective exhibition by Adrian Tranquilli Days of future past is launched, curated by Eugenio Viola and coordinated by Marco De Gemmis.

In the Italian and international panorama of the last twenty years, Adrian Tranquilli is the only one who continuously and exclusively used the super-hero comics motifs for both human materials of his research and emission of his own unique plastic material. By this the oxymoron of the exhibition title borrowed by a famous saga dedicated to mutant heroes published by Marvel Comics from the pages of “X- Men” in 1981 and more recently filmed by Bryan Singer (X-Men – Days of future past, 2014).

In his versatile work which embraces diverse media – from painting to sculpture, from drawing to video – Tranqulli examines the hero character, a transcultural anthropological model that goes through different times and symbols – from Thor to Golem, from Eracle to Christ. The superheroes that live in the collective image for more than sixty years are made by Tranquilli as paradigmatic models of every possible heroic epos as well as a symbol of the dualism safeness/sacrifice at the basis of the Christ history and the Bible mythology where the western culture lies. The expressions of crisis and decadence of this cultural model find their precise iconographic reflection in the characters who inhabit his works: exhausted or defeated, super or anti-heroic they become the bitter metaphor of the relationship between individual and collective, between the single and the religious, ideologic, political or economic structures of power that annihilates him.

Days of future past is the most complex and complete exhibition dedicated to Adrian Tranquilli conceived as an unreleased path through the most meaningful themes of the artist research of the last twenty years.

The exposed works are numerous: Imperfect future (1998), Age of Chance (2005), All is Violent, All is Bright (2009), In excelsis (2011-13) and The End of the Beginning (2016) presented for the first time on this occasion. A set of installations with a powerful visual impact, whose evocative strength dialogues with the museum architecture and the statuary, classic, heroic nature of the Farnese Collection.

The exhibition itinerary was specially designed for the spaces of the National Archaeological Museum and is set among the ground floor, the courtyards, the Farnese Galleries and the first floor of the museum. Hosted in this context the futuristic finds by Tranqulii tell the story of the ironically futuristic civilization: they trigger a series of unsettling counterpoints with the masterpieces hosted in the prestigious museum in Naples returning a deliberately destabilizing overview short-circuiting classicism and futurism, archaeology and science-fiction.

The exhibition Days of Future Past is hosted at the Archaeological Museum of Naples within the project that, for twenty years, its Educational Service carries on in order to promote the meeting between the ancient patrimony hosted in it and the contemporary languages. The exhibition is supported by the Donnaregina Foundation for Contemporary Arts.

Photos by Claudio Abate