Addressing the elephant in approximately all artists’ studios, on nearly any haute couture runways, and in almost every other creative industries, Gucci’s Creative Director, Alessandro Michele, provided the platform and support for Italian artist, Maurizio Cattelan, to piece and to pose the answer—or rather, to discuss and to debate about it—regarding originality, intention, and expression.

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 Superflex, "Power Toilets/Council of the European Union, 2018"

Power Toilets / Council of the European Union is designed in close collaboration with NEZU AYMO architects. Courtesy of the artist.

Available to view until December 16 at the Yuz Museum in Shanghai, China, “The Artist is Present” opened with a star-studded event on October 10, with guests ranging from the collaborators themselves to Chris Lee and Nini as brand ambassadors, Liu Wen, Kentaro Sagaguchi, Cecilia Alemani, Pierpaolo Ferrari, Lucrezia Calabrò, Cristiana Perrella, Ali Subtonick,  and many others.

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XU ZHEN® Courtesy of the artist and MadeIn Company

"Eternity" – Northern Qi golden and painted Buddha, Tang Dynasty torso of standing Buddha from Quyang city, Northern Qi painted Bodhisattva, Tang Dynasty seated Buddha from Tianlongshan, Northern Qi painted Buddha, Tang Dynasty torso of a seated Buddha from Tianlonshan grotto No. 4, Parthenon East pediment, 2013-2014.

Following Molly Lewis’ sublime whistling performance, Drew Erickson’s moving voice and Da Bang’s soulful indie-rock notes, guests from all around the world then took turns in exploring the 17 rooms filled by more than 30 international and Chinese artists. The resulting art pieces show fusions of the East and West, creative interpretations of existing works, and even thought-provoking originals. 4B5A8950 copy.jpg

The Artist is Present, Shanghai 2018 Exhibition View

Using materials both familiar and foreign, in the end, Maurizio concluded that originality can be reached through the act of repetition, and how copies preserve originals in another context. Watch the video for a quick look before catching the next plane to Shanghai, and enjoy our exclusive, complete review about the exhibition in the upcoming issue!    

Tags: Gucci, Fashion, Arts & Culture, Exhibition