MILAN AND NEW YORK—From April 11 through June 17, 2018, Galleria d’Arte Moderna (GAM), Milan; the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; and UBS present But a Storm Is Blowing from Paradise: Contemporary Art of the Middle East and North Africa (Una Tempesta dal Paradiso: Arte Contemporanea del Medio Oriente e Nord Africa) in Milan.
The exhibition marks the final presentation of the Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative, a historic collaboration between the Guggenheim and UBS representing the largest international research, collection-building, and presentation initiative the museum has undertaken to date. MAP’s distinctive, artist-driven program, which began in 2012, underscores a mutual commitment by the Guggenheim and UBS to support contemporary art and education through a total of eight international exhibitions, more than 125 acquisitions, curatorial scholarship from three global regions, and extensive public programming.
Organized by Sara Raza, Guggenheim UBS MAP Curator, Middle East and North Africa, in collaboration with Paola Zatti, Chief Curator, Galleria d’Arte Moderna, and Omar Cucciniello, Curator, Galleria d’Arte Moderna, the exhibition features a range of artistic voices and critical concerns from a rapidly evolving region and its international diaspora. Works by thirteen artists explore the intersecting themes of migration, displacement, architecture, geometry, and history through a range of mediums, including works on paper, installation, photography, sculpture, and video. But a Storm Is Blowing from Paradise was first shown at the Guggenheim Museum in April 2016.
“This exhibition presents challenging ideas and uncompromising artistic strategies, all of which help us to reflect upon a vital region of today’s world,” said Richard Armstrong, Director, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation. “The culminating Milan presentation celebrates the extraordinary influence of a group of artists whose works and ideas have helped shape contemporary art. It is our hope that the impact of the works themselves, the relationships fostered through the MAP project, and the ideas articulated in its multiple presentations continue to resonate thanks to MAP’s unprecedented reach. We are grateful to our visionary collaborator UBS and to our colleagues at partner institutions around the globe, including our friends at GAM. By working on the ground with artists, arts professionals, and audiences, we can tell a richer, more expansive history of modern art and more faithfully represent the art of our time.”
“The Middle East and North Africa are at the center of sweeping global change,” said Fabio Innocenzi, UBS Italy Country Head. “We are proud to be able to help bring this exhibition to the Galleria d’Arte Moderna so that our clients, employees, and the public can participate in intercultural conversations through contemporary art on society and global issues. We have a long history of supporting cultural endeavors around the world, and for many years in Italy, and continue to use contemporary art to bring together ideas, inspiration, and opinion to shape richer lives.”
PUBLIC AND EDUCATION PROGRAMS
But a Storm Is Blowing from Paradise is accompanied by a range of public and academic programs, including a robust opening week schedule:
- An evening of music and discussion with the Barenboim-Said Akademie and West-Eastern Divan Orchestra featuring a chamber music performance followed by a lively dialogue with select orchestra members and exhibition artist Ergin Çavuşoğlu (April 11)
- A seminar for students at Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti (NABA) with exhibition artist Gülsün Karamustafa (April 13)
- A two-day pop-up film festival hosted at Anteo Palazzo del Cinema co-presented by Reel Palestine and the Guggenheim Museum, featuring films Ouroboros (2017) by Basma Alsharif and Electrical Gaza (2015) by Rosalind Nashashibi, as well as a collection of short films (April 14–15)