The Italian-born artist’s first solo exhibition in China presents 29 works from his more than three-decade long career that confront themes of death, social mores, the colossus of art history, and the nature and value of art in globalized contemporary society.
Maurizio Cattelan: The Last Judgment is the first solo exhibition in China by Maurizio Cattelan (b. 1960, Padua, Italy), one of the most popular and controversial figures on the international contemporary art scene. Taking its title from Michelangelo’s fresco in the Sistine Chapel, this exhibition is a focused overview of the artist’s more than three decades of often provocative, mocking, and prankish artistic output. Whereas his art has often been presented in a highly specific manner, this exhibition at UCCA takes a more holistic approach, offering the opportunity to pause and reflect on the artist’s vision and philosophy. Maurizio Cattelan: The Last Judgment is curated by Francesco Bonami, and organized by Liu Kaiyun, Edward Guan, Shi Yao, Anna Yang, and Yvonne Lin.
On view within the open space of UCCA’s Great Hall are 29 works of installation, sculpture, and performance works from throughout the artist’s career, including his first major work Lessico Familiare (1989) and the well known Catttelan (1994), Bidibidobidiboo (1996), Novecento (1997), and Comedian (2019), along with a suite of animal taxidermy works. Site specific works such as Zhang San (2021), a sculpture outfitted as a homeless person in Beijing, and a performance piece based on the figure of Picasso that also alludes to UCCA’s 2019 exhibition Picasso – Birth of a Genius, prompt viewers to participate in Cattelan’s artistic exploits within the contradictions of contemporary society, along with his interrogation of the culture and stereotypes of his birthplace, the mores of today’s globalized society, and the contexts surrounding such reflections.