Friday, January 27, 2012

Andrea Frank & David Rickard at Galleria Michaela Rizzo

Sandro encounters "Internal Resistance" (an installation by David Rickard)
Located just a short distance from Campo San Maurizio, Galleria Michaela Rizzo is always worth a visit, especially from now until March 17 when it is hosting an exhibition of work by the German-born American-based artist Andrea Frank and the New Zealand-born London-based artist David Rickard.

"Untitled (Singapore)" 2007, courtesy of the artist
Frank's newest works in her Systems exhibition consider the way in which we are educated about our world. Her grids of taxidermy birds, glass botanical models, and entomological bee specimens suggest a knowledge divorced from the vital and inter-dependent systems and processes of our living world. A form of knowledge or a way of learning about the world in which the kind of extinction of species now going on around the world is, one might say, almost eerily foreshadowed.

These new works are the logical extension of her recent Ports and Ships project, also on display: photos of the behemoth cargo ships and city-like ports of a global economy of consumption operating at levels beyond the system limits of our natural world.

"Propane Dream"
The sculptures of David Rickard's Displacments challenge our usual sense of space and mass. In "Propane Dream" heavy gas cannisters of all sizes take on the airiness, the insubstantiality of their contents. Elsewhere, a large rectangular grid of small holes drilled neatly into the gallery wall casts a correspondingly-sized rectangle upon the nearby floor, composed entirely of the dust from the drilling and looking very much like a plane of sunlight through a window. In both works, the drilled holes suggest the material form that our (or at least my) conception of the immaterial, the atomic world take.

In "Internal Resistance", pictured at the top of this post, invisible forces all around us (such as gravity) seem to be given shape in a room-wide installation that both imposes itself upon our movements and vibrates systemically to our slightest touch. 

A brief video containing interviews (in English) with the two artists and an overview of the show may be found at the Galleria Michaela Rizzo website:

And here are the websites of the two artists:

Systems and Displacements at Galleria Michaela Rizzo (photo credit: Andrea Frank)


  1. Very interesting. The photos of Sandro is awesome! Hope you have a great weekend.

    1. Thanks, Annie. S did not want to leave that installation--he was having a great time. And unlike taller people, he didn't have to twist and shimmy his way between the cables.

  2. Did the artist drill about a million holes in those gas canisters?

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. He sure did--I wonder how long it must have taken him. I wrote that by doing so the tanks became more airy, but looking at the photo again, I'm struck by how substantial they still seem.