Los Angeles, Calif., – The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (MOCA), announced today the forthcoming exhibition Cinema Vezzoli, highlighting artist Francesco Vezzoli's mastery in deconstructing the vocabulary of filmmaking and in analyzing how celebrity-driven culture influences art and the public imagination. As part of the exhibition the Milan-based artist will debut a new work created especially for the exhibition. Cinema Vezzoli is part of The Trinity, a series presented at three international institutions – the National Museum of XXI Century Arts (MAXXI) in Rome, MOCA and MoMA PS1 – that explores and presents the diverse and fundamental aspects of the artist's work and development. Organized by MOCA Senior Curator Alma Ruiz, Cinema Vezzoli will be on view from April 27 to August 11, 2014 at MOCA Grand Avenue. The presenting sponsor of the exhibition is yoox.com, the world's leading lifestyle e-store for multi-brand fashion, design and art.
From the outset of his career, Vezzoli has investigated the power of the media, film and television. His work is a combination of high and popular culture, which includes the appropriation of diverse formats utilized in the world of mass communication in video and performance. Vezzoli has collaborated with international film and TV stars including Helmut Berger in a re-reading of an episode from the soap opera Dynasty (The Kiss (Let's Play Dynasty), 2000); Helen Mirren, Milla Jovovich, Courtney Love and others in a spoof trailer (Trailer for a Remake of Gore Vidal's Caligula, 2005); Sharon Stone and Bernard-Henri Lévy in a parody presidential campaign ad (Democrazy, 2007); Cate Blanchett, Peter Sarsgaard, and others in a remake of Luigi Pirandello's famous play (Right You Are (If You Think You Are), 2007); and Eva Mendes in a rereading of La Dolce Vita (Jeu de Paume, Je t'aime! (Advertisement for an Exhibition That Will Never Open), 2009). Cinema Vezzoli outlines how Vezzoli plays with the world of classic European cinema and contemporary Hollywood stardom as a mirror to today's obsession with fame, politics and the public exposure of private lives.
“I'm pleased to be working with Francesco Vezzoli, an artist in MOCA's collection whose career I have followed from the beginning,” said MOCA Senior Curator Alma Ruiz. ”The exhibition brings to bear my belief that works in the museum's collection should serve as a point of reference for MOCA exhibitions. Cinema Vezzoli will showcase two videos in our collection and give visitors an opportunity to become better acquainted with Francesco's work and his relationship to Hollywood cinema, a vital aspect of the city's cultural fabric.”
Vezzoli has been an important part of MOCA's history, beginning with the 2001 acquisition of his work A Love Trilogy: Self-Portrait with Marisa Berenson as Edith Piaf (1999). In 2009, a new performance work conceived by Vezzoli was presented once only at MOCA's 30th anniversary gala. A version of Sergei Diaghilev's Ballets Russes, the work was entitled Ballets Russes Italian Style (The Shortest Musical You Will Never See Again), starring Lady Gaga and dancers from the Bolshoi Ballet performing the world premiere of Lady Gaga's song Speechless. In 2012, the artist generously donated his work GREED, A New Fragrance by Francesco Vezzoli (2009), a 60-second commercial replicating the strategy and aesthetics of a commercial perfume launch, directed by Academy Award-winning director Roman Polanski and starring Oscar-nominated actors Natalie Portman and Michelle Williams. The bottle of perfume features a label depicting Vezzoli in drag, photographed by Francesco Scavullo. In conjunction with the exhibition Cinema Vezzoli, MOCAtv, the museum's art video channel, will present a mini retrospective showcasing eight of Vezzoli's films, including three that will be included in the exhibition, and will present a newly created video in which Vezzoli talks about the exhibition.
Cinema Vezzoli is the second component of a three-part series presented at different international museums. Exploring three key elements of the artist's oeuvre – art, religion, and film – The Trinity began with Galleria Vezzoli at MAXXI in Rome from May 29 to November 24, 2013 and then continues with Cinema Vezzoli at MOCA from April 27 to August 11, 2014, culminating with The Church of Vezzoli at MoMA PS1 in New York.
As part of yoox.com's support of Cinema Vezzoli, a dedicated and official MOCA pop-up store will be launched on the lifestyle e-store.
Francesco Vezzoli (b. 1971, in Brescia, Italy) currently lives and works in Milan. He studied at Central Saint Martin's School of Art in London from 1992 to 1995. The artist's work has been presented in various museums including The Garage CCC, Moscow; Tate Modern, London; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; MOCA, Los Angeles; Fondazione Prada, Milan; François Pinault Foundation, Palazzo Grassi, Venice; Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna; Project Space, Vienna; Galerie Nationale du Jeu de Paume, Paris; Whitechapel Art Gallery, London; Wolfsonian FIU, Miami; Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich; New Museum, New York; The Power Plant, Toronto; Le Consortium, Dijon, France; Museu Serralves, Porto, Portugal; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Museum Ludwig, Cologne; Museo d'Arte Moderna di Bologna, Bologna, Italy; Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam; and Castello di Rivoli Museo d'Arte Contemporanea, Turin, Italy. His work has been featured in diverse biennials, including the 2006 Whitney Biennial, the 49th, 51st and 52nd Venice Biennale, the 26th São Paulo Biennial, the 6th International Biennial of Istanbul, and in numerous group shows.

Sunday, April 27, 11am-6pm
MOCA Grand Avenue
Please bring your MOCA membership card to admit you and a guest.
FREE admission; no reservations necessary
INFO 213/621-1794 or membership1@moca.org
ART TALK by Francesco Vezzoli
Sunday, April 27, 3pm
Ahmanson Auditorium at MOCA Grand Avenue
FREE with museum admission; reservations strongly encouraged at moca.org/rsvp
INFO 213/621-1794 or membership1@moca.org
ART TALK by Janet Bergstrom
Sunday, June 8, 3pm
Ahmanson Auditorium at MOCA Grand Avenue
Join UCLA film history professor and writer Janet Bergstrom for a lively discussion of European cinema and the cultural touchstones influencing Vezzoli's work.
FREE with museum admission; reservations strongly encouraged at moca.org/rsvp
INFO 213/621-1794 or membership1@moca.org
ART TALK by Alma Ruiz
Sunday, August 10, 3pm
MOCA Grand Avenue
Join MOCA Senior Curator Alma Ruiz for an exhibition walkthrough of Cinema Vezzoli.
FREE with museum admission; reservations strongly encouraged at moca.org/rsvp
INFO 213/621-1794 or membership1@moca.org

Cinema Vezzoli is presented by yoox.com
Generous support is provided by Anonymous.
Additional support is provided by Marion Hauff, Munich, Galleria Franco Noero, Torino, and Mack Sennett Studios.

In-kind media support is provided by KCRW 89.9 FM, and Los Angeles magazine.

Images: Francesco Vezzoli, All About Anni – Anni vs. Marlene (The Saga Begins), 2006, digital print on paper, courtesy Gagosian Gallery; Francesco Vezzoli, Michelle Williams & Natalie Portman in GREED, The New Fragrance by Francesco Vezzoli, 2009, video, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, gift of the artist, photo by Guy Ferrandis, courtesy of the artist

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About MOCA:
Founded in 1979, MOCA's vision is to be the defining museum of contemporary art. In a relatively short period of time, MOCA has achieved astonishing growth with three Los Angeles locations of architectural renown; a world-class permanent collection of more than 6,800 objects international in scope and among the finest in the world; hallmark education programs that are widely emulated; award-winning publications that present original scholarship; groundbreaking monographic, touring, and thematic exhibitions of international repute that survey the art of our time; and cutting-edge engagement with modes of new media production. MOCA is a not-for-profit institution that relies on a variety of funding sources for its activities.  

Hours: MOCA Grand Avenue (located at 250 South Grand Avenue in downtown Los Angeles) is open Monday and Friday from 11am to 5pm; Thursday from 11am to 8pm; Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 6pm; and closed on Tuesday and Wednesday.  The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA (located at 152 North Central Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90012) has the same hours as MOCA Grand Avenue during exhibitions. Please call ahead or go to moca.org for the Geffen Contemporary at MOCA exhibition schedule. MOCA Pacific Design Center, located at 8687 Melrose Avenue; West Hollywood, CA 90069, is open Tuesday through Friday from 11am to 5pm; Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 6pm; and closed on Monday.  The MOCA Store at 250 South Grand Avenue is open Monday through Wednesday and Friday from 10:30am to 530pm; Thursday from 10:30am to 8:30pm; and Saturday and Sunday from 10:30am to 6:30pm

Museum Admission:  General admission is free for all MOCA members. General admission is also free for everyone at MOCA Grand Avenue and The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA on Thursdays from 5pm to 8pm, courtesy of Wells Fargo. General admission is always free at MOCA Pacific Design Center.  General admission at MOCA Grand Avenue and the Geffen Contemporary at MOCA is $12 for adults; $7 for students with I.D. and seniors (65+); and free for children under 12.

More Information: For 24-hour information on current exhibitions, education programs, and special events, call 213 626 6222 or access MOCA online at moca.org.