Yee-Haw, Paola Pivis ninth exhibition at Galerie Perrotin
in the last fifteen years, introduces a new series of photographs with animals.
Her diverse work, spanning performances to sculptures to large installations, is punctuated over the years by her photographic representations of animals in performative happenings; these are her most renowned images.
A long way from unicorns and other chimeras, the animals that appear in Paola Pivis world are very real. Yet, set in their strange surroundings, they appear as a dream within reality, imbuing them with a mythological aura (ostriches or a donkey sailing on a small boat in the Mediterranean Sea, 84 goldfish swimming in bowls and flying in a passenger airplane in New Zealand, different white animals grazing in an Edenic land, alligators frolicking in whipped cream in Florida or polar bears covered in multicolored feathers posing during the inauguration of Galerie Perrotin in New York). These images cast a new oneiric light over the world, viewed now through the prism of fantasy, of a fabulous bestiary. They appear to reveal a dimension that is a part of everyday life, which has only by chance never occured before in front of someones eyes.
For this exhibition, Pivi brought four horses to the Eiffel Tower. The animals seem to have found a new playground, an architectural landscape made to their measure. Once again, Pivi revisits and juxtaposes elements that are both familiar and archetypal into a fantastic iconography.
The creation of a new work on the Eiffel Tower, the most iconic landmark of Paris, is also very meaningful for Pivi, as a way for her to play with the entire city and its history.
Paola Pivi was co-awarded the Golden Lion for the best national pavilion (Italy) at Harald Szeemanns Venice Biennial in 1999. For this venue, Paola Pivi presented Untitled (airplane), an inverted Fiat G-91 airplane resting on its cockpit. She showed again at the Venice Biennial in 2003, in Manifesta 5 in 2004 and in the Berlin Biennial in 2008.
In 2012, the artist was commissioned two original public artworks in New York City: How I roll, a project by Public Art Fund, a Piper Seneca airplane rotating on its wingtips, installed near Central Park at Doris C. Freedman Plaza; and Untitled (zebras), a striking & romantic image of zebras on a snow-covered mountaintop on the 25-by-75-foot High Line Billboard at West 18th Street. She has also displayed public art in Rotterdam in 2010-2011 with Sculpture International Rotterdam.
She has exhibited in important Museums as the Musée dArt Moderne de la Ville de Paris (2000), Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo (2001), MoMA PS1, New York (2003 & 2007), MCA - Museum of Contemporary Art of Chicago (2005), CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts, San Francisco (2005), Hayward Gallery, London (2005), Kunsthalle Basel (2007), Portikus, Frankfurt (2008), Palazzo Grassi,Venice (2008), Tate Modern, London (2009), Rockbund Art Museum, Seoul (2012).
Her artworks are featured in some of the most prestigious international collections, such as the Guggenheim Museum in New York, Centre Pompidou in Paris, Castello di Rivoli in Turin, MAXXI - National Museum of XXI Century Arts, Roma...