The fourth of a five-chapter publication series by Ugo Rondinone, this catalogue documents the iteration of Ugo Rondinone's Vocabulary of solitude at the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive in the summer of 2017.
In Berkeley, Rondinone complemented the installation of the forty-five clowns with some of his exuberant rainbow paintings, pairs of oversize clown shoes, and 1998, a dark, sixty-two-part cycle of ink-on-paper works evoking the pain of desire and attachment. The phrase “the world just makes me laugh” is from the poem “Welcoming the Flowers” (2004) by Rondinone's husband, John Giorno. The tension that runs deep in Rondinone's works, as much chromatically—between the darkness of 1998 and the rainbows airbrushed into colossal paintings—as psychologically—embodied in the pensive clowns—invites contemplation of the fact that laughter is never too far from crying.
Published following the eponymous exhibition at the Berkeley Art Museum and the Pacific Film Archive from June 28 to August 26, 2017.
Ugo Rondinone (*1963, Switzerland) has lived in New York for several years. Using photography, video, painting, drawing, sculpture, sound, and text by turns, Rondinone is a virtuoso of forms and techniques.
Developing surprising sensorial environments, he especially likes destabilizing our perceptions and unsettling our certainties. Rearranging content and formal elements, a personal poetic with elements taken directly from the outside world, he draws us into a synesthetic experience.