Namsal Siedlecki: Mvaḥ Chā

22 September - 30 November 2020
exhibition curated by Marcello Smarrelli, within the framework of Italian Council

Fondazione Pastificio Cerere presents Mvaḥ Chā, personal exhibition of Namsal Siedlecki, curated by Marcello Smarrelli, which will be open from 22th September until 30th November 2020.

For the first time in Italy the event presents the results of the Crisalidi project – shown in a January preview by the Patan Museum (Kathmandu, Nepal) – supported by the Italian Council (6th Edition, 2019) program to promote contemporary art in the world by the Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity of the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism.

The main focus of the exhibition is made up of five bronze sculptures, titled Mvaḥ Chā (Chrysalis), realized by Siedlecki in 2019 during the various residency periods in Kathmandu, where he had the opportunity to experiment and elaborate on the Nepalese lost-wax methodin some of the most relevant local foundries. The title of the sculptures derives therefore from the daily practice of shops, from the very moment the wax model is covered in various layers of “Mvaḥ Chā” (a type of mortar obtained by mixing clay, cow manure, and chaff, the casing of rice grains), creating a shell so thick to hide the original shape. Siedlecki was able to alter these elusive artefacts which, though necessary for the creation of the sculptures, would never have become such, as they are usually destroyed in order to carry out the fusing process.

The result of this unusual process is a series of sculptures of indefinite mass, ‘non-mocks’, forms given a powerful, primal expressivity, escaping conventional canons of proportions and precise anatomical reference points, which, however, preserve a thin but powerful association with Hindu and Buddhist religious iconography, referencing at the same time the archaizing aesthetics of the early ‘900. Sculptures creating a dialogue between past and present, East and West, highlighting how the fascination for the unknown and spiritual has always been escorting mankind, with no regards to époques nor latitudes.

As required by the Italian Council project – its main objectives being incrementing public collections with the addition of new productions – the Centre for Contemporary Art Luigi Pecci in Prato will be the final recipient of the various artworks created.

In November 2020 a book on this project will be shown, edited by Nero, with written work by Marcello Smarrelli, Artistic Director of the Fondazione Pastificio Cerere, Sangeeta Thapa, Director of Siddharta Arts Foundation, Charles Jamyang Oliphant of Rossie, Ph. D of Oxford University, Department of Oriental studies.

Reservation required:

[read the press release]


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Installation view Mvaḥ Chā, Credits: Andrea Veneri