Live Virtual Auction, 9 November 2021
Incl. Buyer's Premium and VAT
About this Item
This set of images stands out as one of the most recognisable iconographic markers in Kentridge’s career. Four of the five images were originally published – one a week – on the cover of the Sunday edition of the Italian newspaper Il Sole 24 Ore. The images refer on the one hand to Italian art history – The Massacre of the Innocents by Giotto di Bondone – and on the other hand to more contemporary Italian history, particularly the war in the 1930s between Italy and present-day Ethiopia (then Abyssinia).
The title of the main piece l’Avanzata Inesorabile/The Massacre of the Innocents, clearly points to Kentridge’s stance against colonialism, domination and exploitation. The reference to the world walking on stilts, the gas mask on its hind legs, and the newspaper articles, emphasise the immediate and ongoing political and socio-economic consequences of the conflicts, repressions, struggles and ecological disasters imposed by a power from one continent on another.
In the recent exhibition catalogue of Kentridge’s major retrospective of drawings at the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa in 2019/2020, Il Solo 24 Ore took a prominent place as one of the 15 themes that highlighted his oeuvre and the chronology of his work.
Lilian Tone (ed) (2013) William Kentridge: Fortuna, London: Thames & Hudson, illustrated on pages 80 to 89.
Mark Rosenthal (ed) (2009) William Kentridge: Five Themes, San Francisco: San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and Norton Museum of Art, illustrated on page 193.
William Kentridge (2019) Why Should I Hesitate: Putting Drawings to Work, Cape Town: Koenig Books, pages 248 to 253.