The seemingly incongruous works that make up A Contemporary Dialogue With Michelangelo underline the flow of artistic inspiration across the centuries. This flow is probably nowhere more clear than in the presence of Sam Taylor-Johnson’s Pieta, a video work that features Robert Downey Jr, currently the superhero of the moment with the hugely successful the Iron Man franchise, who was then undergoing rehab, in the role of Jesus. Four hundred years on, we get a glimpse of how the superhero ethos of savior and sacrificial victim continues to resonate even to the furthest corners of pop culture.
By putting works such as these together with Michelangelo’s Day and the sketches of the Michelangelo school (sketches from the Sistine chapel), curator Lin Chih-ming (林志明) wanted to take these works out of the context of an art history lesson, and make it something more innovative and appealing. “A university art gallery should be more creative, not just a place where information is put on display. There should be space for experimentation.”
“The energy created by art is an important part of a country’s assets,” Lin said, speaking about her hopes for the gallery. “Although this is a small university gallery, I feel that if it can fully exploit its many advantages, it will be able to make an important contribution.”
More information (Chinese) about MoNTUE can be found at montue.ntue.edu.tw. The museum is located at 134 Heping E Rd Sec 2, Taipei City (台北市和平東路二段134號) and is open Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 5pm.