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Kehinde Wiley Fondazione Cini

Kehinde Wiley: Archaeology of Silence

Fondazione Giorgio Cini presents “Archaeology of Silence,” an exhibition of new works by Kehinde Wiley, coinciding with the 59th Venice Biennale. The show, curated by Christophe Leribault, features a collection of recent and monumental paintings and sculptures portraying a series of prone Black bodies, using the language of the fallen hero—notably, Holbein’s Dead Christ in the Tomb—to lay bare the brutality of American and global colonial pasts. That, in Wiley’s words, is the archaeology he is unearthing: “The spectre of police violence and state control over the bodies of young Black and Brown people all over the world.” The poses of the vulnerable, borrowed from the annals of Western European art history, also speak to their resilience, functioning as monuments to endurance in the face of savagery, an endurance to the degree of iconography and sainthood.

The show, on view from April 23 to July 24, poignantly speaks to a vibrant career portraying African-American and African-Diasporic figures, challenging and subverting European and American art-historical narratives in the mediums of painting, sculpture, and video.

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On view at Gagosian is “Iconic Avedon: A Centennial Celebration of Richard Avedon” (January 22-March 4) connecting the artist to Paris.
This month, on view January 10-February 28, Stanley Whitney debuts his painting Dear Paris (2023) at Gagosian.

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