12.08.09 - Auditorium

Thomas Struth y Ludovico Pratesi arrive to dialogue with the public in Fundación Proa on Saturday, August 22 at 17.30 hs.

On Saturday the 22nd and Sunday 23rd at 16 hs, Ludovico Pratesi will accompany the public on a guided tour through the exhibition Urban Spaces.
On Saturday the 22nd at 17.30 hs, the artist Thomas Struth and curator Ludovico Pratesi will be present at the Fundación Proa to dialogue with regards to the works being shown in Urban Spaces.

In an interview done by Ludovico Pratesi, Thomas Struth comments with regards to the city “Ah! Cities! Once founded as commercial post son the shore of a river, as ports and fortresses.

Cities continue being stimulating melting pots of information and possibilities. Not withstanding, city-life has become increasingly difficult. The dependency on the automobile as a means of transportation dominates the quality of space in a destructive and unbearable way. It is surprising how the idea of Utopian urbanism – which emerged in the beginning of the 20th Century and promised leisure and happiness in an environment of apartment buildings and highways – has not been recycled or revised in our ecologically conscious era.

Cities from all around the world have ignored the imminent collapse of their structures due to greed, brutality, and incompetence of certain real estate developers that, with an alarming frequency, destroy important historic sites in urban environments. The politicians and urban planners almost always fail at the hour of controlling the interests of the private sector, and having a vision of the future of their cities.

The old, centric, neighborhoods of many cities in U.S have already been destroyed; China and Russia have copied this model, disregarding their urban history. But people want to be in Paris, London, and New York: three metropolis’ that represent the dream of the old city at a human scale”.

Some facts on his life
Thomas Struth was born in 1954 in Gelden, Germany; he lives and works in Dusseldorf. He began studying painting at the Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf and later listed himself in the photography course of Bernd Becher. In 1978 he obtained a scholarship from the Academy to travel to New York, where he did his first black and white photos without any human presence.

He later takes on color and adopts a larger format. Towards the mid-eighties he takes on the relationship between man and environment in a series of portraits that, above all, show families in domestic environments. He later captures crowds and anonymous characters in the interior of museum exhibition rooms, exploring the intense dialogue between the public and the works of art. In recent years, he has extended his idiom to include in his work tropical landscapes.

He has shown work at the Kunsthalle in Bern and the Yamaguchi Museum in 1987, at the Portikus in Fráncfort, at the Renaissance Society in Chicago in 1990, at the Hirschhron Museum in Washington in 1992, at the Kunsthalle in Hamburg in 1993, at the ICA in Boston and at the ICA in London in 1994, at the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto and at the Kunstmuseum in Bonn in 1995, at the International Art Palace in Pekín in 1997, at the Carré d’Art in Nîmes and at the Stedelijk Museum in Ámsterdam in 1988, at the Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo in 2000, at the Museum of Dallas and the MOCA in Los Angeles in 2002, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York in 2000, at the Prado in Madrid in 2007 and at the Museo Madre in Naples in 2008.

Ludovico Pratesi returns to Proa with two guided visits on Saturday the 22nd at 16:00 hs. and on Sunday the 23rd at 17:30 hs.
Ludovico Pratesi was born in Rome, city which he lives in, on April 15th 1961. He graduated in Law and Modern Art History at the University of Rome. He is an art critic for the newspaper La Repubblica. Between 1994 and 2000 he wrote for the French newspaper Le Monde. He was the Artistic Advisor for the city of Bari from 2002 to 2005. Since December of the year 2000 he has been the Artistic Director of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Pesaro. In 2009 he was named curator of the Palazzo Fabroni, a contemporary museum situated in Pistoia, Toscana. Since 2004 he has been the Artistic Director of the Fondazione Guastalla, whose headquarters are in Rome.

Between 1998 and 2008 he was taught Contemporary Art History at the University of Reggio Calabria. He has curated numerous exhibitions of international and Italian artists, among them: Candida Höfer, Giuseppe Penone, Enzo Cucchi, Tony Cragg, Marina Abramovic, Joseph Kosuth, John Cage, Domenico Bianchi, Mimmo Paladino, Cristiano Pintaldi, Francesco Gennari, Stefano Arienti y Vedovamazzei. He is president of the Italian branch of the IAAC (International Asociation of Art Critics).