Historical Promiscuities

Works by Adam Nathaniel Furman

Milan
2018

"Historical Promiscuities - Works by Adam Nathaniel Furman” is a solo exhibition by Adam Nathaniel Furman, bringing a selection of the young English designer/artist’s works to Milan.

 

Under the curatorship of Luca Molinari, the exhibition displayed – from the 16th to the 22nd April - ceramic pieces developed with Bitossi in an exclusive, limited series, and pieces from the Sir John Soane’s Museum in London; as well as drawings, prints and videos made by Adam Nathaniel Furman.

 

The exhibition venue was the studio of Vudafieri-Saverino Partners, where Tiziano Vudafieri and Claudio Saverino constructed a narrative work space, inhabited by eclectic artistic references, and which - together with Luca Molinari – was re-invented for this occasion with a new and intriguing storyline.

It was a context based on contaminations between different styles, markings, and references, and which provides the perfect framework to Adam Nathaniel Furman’s works, evoking the peculiar pop style which has rapidly brought him to the centre of public and critical acclaim.

 

Exhibition abstract

Free and unexpected experimentation is one of the greatest ways in which we can revive design and architecture from a period of dullness; different solutions are called for, and courageous choices are needed.

Young English designer Adam Nathaniel Furman’s work in both theory and design is one of the most surprising and stimulating counterpoints to the contemporary scene, and it is exhibited here, at the studio of Vudafieri-Saverino Partners, for the first time in Italy.

 

Two families of ceramic micro-architecture occupy the atelier, creating a dialogue with the contemporary works of art which normally occupy the same spaces.

Adam Nathaniel Furman, has been highlightes by design media as one of the emerging creative talents on the British scene, and his works here are composed of two distinct groups, with both sharing a surprising capacity to reinterpret the Italian tradition in a Popular and irreverent manner: "Roman Singularity" a series of classically-inspired, brightly coloured ceramics, recently exhibited at the Sir John Soane’s Museum in London, and a series of ceramics made by Bitossi, one of the most historically brands defining a creative relationship between avant-garde design and Italian tradition.

The pieces have in common a vivid use of colour deployed in vital combinations, along with the capacity to master traditional shapes, creating absolutely unique objects

Luca Molinari

 

 

“You know when you are really, really hungry, starved even, but you didn’t notice until you walked into a supermarket, and it’s mad, it’s overwhelming, everything, all these endless shelves of delights and goodies have an insatiable, animal pull on your stomach, they aggressively seduce your thirsty belly through the eyes, an overwhelming delirium of desire, and you want everything, you want to devour all of it, to chomp and chew, and swallow again and again and again until you are full up? Well we are starved. We are desperately hungry, even if we don’t realise it. We’ve been fed on a starvation diet of mean, thin gruel, without colour, without ornament, with no sugar, no spice, no history, no allusion, no banquets, no feasts, no love-making, no carnival, no lustre, no bodies, just bread, a knife, and water. You are very, very hungry. Perhaps you do not realise it. Perhaps you’re even starved. Perhaps we all are, and when a person has been starved it’s best not to overwhelm their bellies, or they’ll throw it all up, and keep none of the goodness in. So, no supermarket for now, it might be too much, for now the emergency lunchbox, little packets of delight to save us from a world of wealth without pleasure. Three icons, three hints, three tasters. In an age of puritans, in an age of dead history stale with the dank dust covers of old men, it is time for the rise of the promiscuous, it is time for the three horse-ladies of the apocalypse. Forget gravitas, forget dogma, welcome Kalliope, Kallistrate and Kallisto.”

 

“History doesn’t belong to the historians, it dies, it turns to dust and crumbles in their hands. It doesn’t belong in great tomes hidden in dark libraries, or to the conservatives, or the fascists, it belongs to us, to each of us, to make of it what we will, it is ours, those who made it left it to us in the very act of dying. It’s not a burden, it’s the very material from which we can carve and make things anew… every renaissance façade, every Nubian statue, every Kashmiri fabric should be as instantly accessible and as fun as the latest dancing chihuahua video on youtube. To save history we must use it, constantly, we must be entirely irreverent with it, we must wear it as lightly as a tank top worn by a young man at a summer festival. We must imagine our cities like Benjamin Button, getting younger and younger with every passing year, and so the older in fact they are, the younger they’ll now be. We must be polyamorous in our dealings with the past, we must be promiscuous, we must get into intense love affairs and have terribly dramatic break-ups. We must save the future by not allowing anyone to dictate to us the meaning of what came before, by not allowing them to idealise or to be nostalgic. We must shove the incandescent licentiousness of a chromatic and creative chronology front and centre, and where better than to begin at the beginning, with ceramics, the most ancient of the ancient, like all those naughty Etruscan pots lined up in the Museums, but set free, running wild, cavorting and unruly bright little Historical Promiscuities, Kalliope, Kallistrate and Kallisto.”

Adam Nathaniel Furman

 

 

This Milanese exhibition represented a unique opportunity to view the work of a highly critical designer, who has the ability to produce forms and styles full of life and creative freedom.

PROJECT

Claudio Saverino, Tiziano Vudafieri

DESIGN TEAM

Sabrina Sala, Francesca Fantini

PHOTO

Paolo Pandullo, Claudio Saverino

 

VIDEO Creating Space

VIDEO Space changing

VIDEO The opening