Adrian Paci

November 19, 2007 – January 5, 2008
at Peter Blum Chelsea

Peter Blum is very pleased to announce the exhibition Adrian Paci: Passages opening on November 9th, 2007 at Peter Blum Chelsea, 526 West 29th Street, New York.

The various media in which Adrian Paci has worked include film, photography, painting, and sculptural installation. For this exhibition, Paci has for the first time made three paintings on plaster, each measuring 7 ½ x 10 feet (2.25 x 3.00 meters).Entitled Facades, these paintings are attached to freestanding brick walls supported in turn by old wooden beams and depict scenes extracted from videos of weddings in Albania (Paci’s place of birth).

The inspiration for the imagery of Facades, as in many of Paci’s other works, can be traced to his difficult but necessary decision to leave Albania for Milan in 1997. Subsequently, the memories of his past, his culture and country, as well as the reality of his separation from these, have infused his work. The nine scenes in each wall painting play with the juxtaposition of important symbolic and cultural rites (a veiled bride walking towards her future husband) and glimpses of everyday gestures during the festivities. Paci sets the fleeting moment of each video frame against the fixed and frozen image painted on the wall. This allows the paintings to function like a window to a different place and time while simultaneously battling the physical presence of the actual walls. These brick walls allude to fragments of houses and are symbolic of the unfinished building structures often seen in the landscape in underprivileged regions of the Mediterranean.

Just as these frescoes are an exploration of Adrian Paci’s personal history brought into a broader social and cultural context, so too is the video Vajtojca (The Weeper) from 2002 in which Paci stages his own death by hiring a professional weeper to grieve his passing. This ritual, so common in the Balkan region, ends here in comic absurdity as Paci gets up, thanks the mourner and leaves.

This exhibition by Adrian Paci represents his first at Peter Blum Gallery, New York.

Currently, Adrian Paci’s work can also be seen in the exhibition Senso Unico at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center as well as at SMITH-STEWART (53 Stanton Street, New York, NY 10002, 212-477-2821.)

Adrian Paci was born in 1969 in Shkoder, Albania and lives and works in Milan, Italy. He studied at the Academy of Arts in Tirana, Albania. His numerous solo-exhibition include the upcoming show at the Kunstverein Hannover (2008), Museum am Ostwall, Dortmund, Germany (2007), Milton Keynes Gallery, England (2007), Galleria Civica di Modena, Italy (2006), P.S.1, New York (2005), Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston (2005), Moderna Museet, Stockholm, Sweden (2005), Baltic Art Center (2003), and the Galleria d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea, GAMeC, Bergamo, Italy (2003). Furthermore, Paci represented Albania in the first Albanian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 1999 and participated in the Venice Biennale in 2005.