Léa Lublin

Léa Lublin, “Senza titolo”, 1977 (dettaglio). Collezione privata, Napoli. In comodato a Madre · museo d’arte contemporanea Donnaregina, Napoli. Foto © Amedeo Benestante. | Léa Lublin, “Untitled,” 1977 (detail). Private collection, Napoli. On loan to Madre · museo d’arte contemporanea Donnaregina, Napoli. Photo © Amedeo Benestante.

Léa Lublin (Poland, 1929-Paris, 1999) moved with her family to Argentina. From 1941 to 1949 she attended the Academia Nacional de Bellas Artes of Buenos Aires, and began to explore pictorial language that was far-removed from both realism and the geometric abstraction of Concrete Art.
The artist’s studies in Paris, starting in 1952, with Gustave Singier at the Académie Ranson, put her contact with the young French painters of the period. However, it was after she returned to America that her research changed radically, paving the way in the following decade for new explorations. Indeed, from the mid-1960s, Lublin transcends the two-dimensionality of the canvas to also embrace various media solutions, especially in the direction of performance, the site-specific, and video; the public’s participation and the overcoming of the border between art and life become core elements in Lublin’s work.

After returning to Paris, strongly influenced by the feminist movement, the artist works on the perceptions of behavioral and relational models in art and in everyday life. In one of her first performances in Paris, entitled Mon Fils, 1968, she transforms the space of the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris into a domestic space in which she takes care of her seven-month old child, identifying social life and gender identity to be the privileged coordinates of her work, while at the end of the decade she also creates sensory and participatory sites (Terranauts, 1969).

The following years are characterized by works that link the elaboration of critical thinking on the subject of art – including Polilogo Exterior, 1974, an imaginary dialogue between the artist, her gallerist, a critic and a writer, and the project entitled Interrogations sur l’art, begun in 1974 and completed in the 1990s – and disciplinary crossings, always aimed at a dimension of artistic commitment and a constant attention to the theme of individual and group memory: Presente suspendido. Marcel Duchamp á Buenos Aires 1919 – 1991. Objets perdus/ Objets trouvés.
In line with this research, in 1977, Lublin, on the occasion of her solo show at the Galleria Lucio Amelio (La mano di Dante o lo schermo), produced several aphorisms about art on fabric (Untitled, 1977), which she installed on the gallery walls, but also disseminated in the open space, from the outer railing of Villa Pignatelli to the base of the statue of the poet in Piazza Dante, implying the space and the public dynamics in her own questions about the meaning, consciously multiple and intimately rational, of making art.