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A-Z Advanced Technologies

Andrea Zittel

13.02.2007 | 24.03.2007
Massimo De Carlo, Milano
Zittel’s newest work focuses on a reconnection between concept, function and technology (or craft) – the three elements which she believes exist in any constructed object. To her the way something looks, the way it functions and the way it is made are of equal importance, and her work is the proof that art can be conceptual and yet still about the hand and making. Theorizing about social functions, and technical problem-solving assist one another and may ultimately become one and the same process. The works in this exhibition are included under the loosely defining heading of A-Z Advanced Technologies - a cross section of the creative output of A-Z West, Zittel’s home, workshop and testing ground in Joshua Tree, California. Pieces include the A-Z Fiber Form Uniforms, A-Z Single Strand Shapes, A-Z Raugh Furniture, and a series of studies for billboards based on her ongoing collection of “these things I know for sure”. Of particular interest to Zittel are the different ‘rules’ that each material imposes on its own use; what one might term the ‘technologies’ that must be invented in each case. A crochet work, for example, starts from a single point and grows out and round with a continuous forward motion, amassing in even increments stitch after stitch; as the vocabulary of movements allowed define the scope of formal possibilities as well as the functional practicalities. Zittel’s work can be understood as a single, far-reaching enterprise of research or enquiry, under the identity of “A-Z”. The sets of rules she has imposed on herself for the purposes of experiment have been extreme at times – wearing a uniform for months on end, exploring limitations of living space, living without measured time – although to Zittel the invention of one’s own rules is always essentially a liberating experience. In this show she reveals certain applicable principles or truths which have emerged from her ongoing project – an abstract combination, from design principles to observations of human nature.
Andrea Zittel