Alfredo Jaar

MACRO - Museo D'Arte Contemporanea Roma

Alfredo Jaar’s Gramsci Trilogy, 2004– 2005, is a profound investigation into the role played by intellectuals facing the forces of power—an extremely relevant issue right now in Italy (where several journalists opposing the current government have been silenced by order of Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi) and elsewhere. This is Jaar at his best: politically radical yet contemplative, somber, and personal.

The first part of the trilogy, Infinite Cell, was shown in 2004 at Galleria Lia Rumma. A sequence of mirrors, infinitely reflecting an image of prison bars, reconstructed the austere cell where Antonio Gramsci was imprisoned and where he wrote his Prison Notebooks (1929–35). The Communist theoretician was condemned to twenty years’ imprisonment in 1926 and died in 1937 after being released, his health broken. The two new installments in Rome expanded the gaze from a space of private,

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