Vanessa Beecroft (born April 25, 1969 in Genova) is an italian contemporary artist now based in Los Angeles. After studying architecture at the high-school, she took the Painting course at the Genoa Art Academy, but after a year she went to Milan, at the Brera Academy of Art where she graduated in Stage Design in 1993.
In 1993, while she was studying in Brera, Vanessa Beecroft was invited to have an exhibition in Milan at the Luciano Inga Pin Gallery. She had nothing to show (as she confessed in an interview) except her “diet-book”, written from 1985 to 1993, and some drawings. She brought with her some girls from the accademy classroom as a “support audience” that wore Vanessa’s clothes and a wig. VB01, 1993. This was her firt performance that brought Vanessa to show in New York at the PS1 Contemporary Art Center (VB08) only one year later.
Each performance is made for a specific location and often references the political, historical, or social associations of the place where it is held, but they are often related to autobiographical obsessions: the female body and the food, the color, the art history and the cinema. All of this is put on as a tableau vivent, as it was a canvas, a sculptural group or an architecture where girls are columns placed on their high-heels as they were a basement.
Beecroft’s work is deceptively simple in its execution, provoking questions around identity politics and voyeurism in the complex relationship between viewer, model and context. The performances are existential encounters between models and audience, their shame and their expectations.
The turning point in her career was in 1998 with “Show” (VB35) at the Guggenheim Frank Lyod Wright’s rotunda. Fifteen tall, slender models appeared in glittering Gucci bikinis alongside five other women who were naked except for their stilettos. Three rules governed the three hours performance: 1 Do not move 2 Do not talk 3 You are encouraged to stare back at the audience.
Rules are fundamental in the Vanessa’s work. They are the way with she “paints” the scene after she has choosen the disposition, the style and all other things, because Beecroft is a perfectionist and always has her work under cotrol.
♦Los Angeles Exhibitions
2001 & 2002–> Gagosian Gallery, VB46
2008–> ACE Gallery, VB63
2013–> ltd. Los Angeles, Group show Inside This Human Clay (drawings).
Vanessa Beecroft in Los Angeles bacame a friend of the rapper Kanye West, to which she directed the “Runaway” video in 2010 that, actually, in is full version, is a film. Furthermore in 2015, during the fashion week in New York, they worked together to set up the show for the rapper’s adidas collection “Yeezy Season1”
♦On Going in Italy
56th Venice Biennale “All the italian futures” –> Italian Pavilion “Italian Code” (curator Vincenzo Trione).
Expò Milano–> Italian Palace “Jennifer Statuario” (curator Marco Balich).