As part of our continuing Artist to Watch series, we are pleased to introduce you this month to the practice of Argentinian artist Amalia Pica, who lives and works in London, and who is garnering growing national and international interest through a range of projects and presentations currently.
Pica is interested in the question of whether art can be a form of communication. Her practice also pays particular attention to the act of listening, forms of mass communication and sites of celebration. Pica explores these ideas through a wide variety of media, including sculpture, drawing, photography, installation, performance and film. The artist has also created numerous participatory works.
Recent exhibitions of Pica’s work have focused on primitive technologies for listening and eavesdropping – glasses against walls, string telephones and makeshift television aerials. These works explore the fundamental social importance of listening and communicating with each other. Another series of works employ festoons, bunting and strings of lights – decorative found objects intended to create a sense of excitement, celebration and social exuberance. These elements have also previously been used in performances in which the participants, strangers who had previously not met each other, develop a unique, transient social bond through the experience. For example, Pica’s show at London’s Chisenhale gallery involved a `nomadic sculpture’ being hosted on a weekly basis by different residents of Tower Hamlets , generating a sense of community through her intervention.
Amalia Pica (born 1978, Argentina) lives and works in London. Recent solo exhibitions include Chronic Listeners, Kunsthalle Sankt Gallen (2012); Marc Foxx Gallery, Los Angeles (2011); C-sale, Malmo Konsthall, Sweden (2010); Galerie Diana Stigter, Amsterdam (2010). Pica was one of the participating artists in ILLUMInations, 54th International Art Exhibition of the Venice Biennale (2011) and The Ungovernables, New Museum Triennial, New York (2012); in 2013, Pica will have solo exhibitions at MIT List Visual Arts Centre, Massachusetts, and Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago. Pica was awarded The Paul Hamlyn Foundation Award for Artists 2011. Pica is represented in London by Herald Street gallery.
Image: Amalia Pica, If these walls could talk, 2010, cans, string, dimensions variable. Installation view, Kunst Halle Sankt Gallen, Switzerland, 2012.