the villa arconati in milan is the canvas for artist angela lyn's latest exhibition | Source: villa arconati

Inside Angela Lyn’s Grand Exhibition at the Villa Arconati in Milan

Displaying over 150 original works, across 25 dedicated rooms, in a 400-year-old palace and gardens, three years in the making – the latest major solo art exhibition by Angela Lyn is set to be a grand affair.

Opening on 3rd April, the expansive project by the Anglo Chinese artist is named, On the Edge of Time, and is situated at the historic 17th century Baroque Villa Arconati in northwest Milan. The sprawling exhibition masterpiece includes paintings, drawings, sculptures, installations, texts and video work. 

With the spectacular palace as the canvas, the exhibition offers an insight into Lyn’s artistic language displaying a connection between the past and the present. The artist stated she wanted “to bring the historical building into the present through what connects us as humans regardless of the era”.

The historic opulence of the architecture sets an impressive stage where lofty ceilings, Baroque flourishes and nymph-adorned frescoes are brimming with life, history and stories – a seemingly perfect backdrop for Lyn’s narrative of her artistic journey.

Sea Room at Angela Lyn exhibition
Sea Room at Angela Lyn exhibition

My approach is to employ a narrative akin to story-telling, in which the presence of the work touches the viewer not only on a conceptual and emotional level but also through the energy of its physical presence. My hope is to engage the viewer by creating something communicative upon which experience and memory can be built. 

Angela Lyn

Each room-specific installation confronts a different theme from the raft and giant flood mural in the sea room, to the patterns of slippers in the ballroom.

Ballroom at Angela Lyn exhibition
The ballroom at Angela Lyn exhibition | Source: Tatler

The artist’s idea for the ballroom was to remember the people who danced there over many decades using the Chinese tradition of making slippers for their ancestors.

“The idea is to kind of remember all the people who have danced there over hundreds of years,” she says. “It’s a Chinese tradition to make slippers to remember our ancestors, so across the galleries there are many layers of cultural mixings of both Chinese and English.”

Angela Lyn installation
Angela Lyn, There Will Be Enough, installation | Source: Tatler

The exhibition is curated by Li Zhenhua, known for notable curatorial work for Art Basel Hong Kong and significant museum exhibitions such as K11 and Minsheng Art Museum in Shanghai. The collaboration brings together their shared cross cultural experiences.

The project also spans far more than just the artworks. Michael Schindhelm, the internationally known German-Swiss author and documentary filmmaker, produced a film introducing Angela Lyn’s work, the exhibition and the unique setting of the Villa.

It’s also accompanied by a 400-page publication designed by Jonas Niedermann and photographed by Andrea Rossetti portraying the works, the site-specific room installations and a curatorial text by Li Zhenhua.

Angela Lyn, On the Edge of Time at Villa Arconati, is open from 3rd April to 16th October 2022, only on Sundays.

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