The Lia Rumma Gallery presents a joint project designed by Joseph Kosuth. The exhibition in Naples is followed shortly by the one in the Milan gallery. The Gallery would like the exhibition to mark the transition to a new millennium, by entrusting to the artist the role of intermediary between the two galleries and the changeover from this century to the one about to begin. It was with an exhibition by Kosuth, then a promising young artist in the United States, that Lia Rumma inaugurated the first gallery in Naples in 1971. This exhibition therefore intends to stress the continuity and coherence both in terms of direction and choices that have characterised a journey which, through a series of important stages, has led from the first beginnings in Naples to the recent developments marked by the inauguration of a second gallery.
Kosuth is one of the most representative exponents of conceptual art and author, from the sixties onwards, of critical essays as well as the organiser of some of the first events associated with the movement. He explores the relationship between art, language and philosophy, and between an object and its definition, and his work has been characterised from the very beginning by emotional detachment and the abandonment of any formal or expressive anxiety. He defines his art as conceptual in the sense that it is founded on the linguistic understanding of all artistic positions, both past and present, regardless of the elements used for their constructionî. His first works are tautological and far removed from autobiographical intentions: they include, in many cases, objects presented beside a photo of the same object and its definition taken from a dictionary, presented in an entirely impersonal way. His work subsequently moved towards a deeper interest in context.
While the installation in the Naples gallery consists of a re-interpretation by Kosuth of his own work, and particularly of the work made in collaboration with the gallery – photographs of the works he carried out while living in Italy, are presented – the project for the installation in the Milan gallery is a re-interpretation of the work carried out by Kosuth outside the country. This will bring to the gallery an experience spent in a wider circuit.
It is therefore a tautology of the multiple possibilities of interpretation and also a retrospective look at the context, the history of the gallery and his own method of working.

ARTIST