The Exhibition

Learn more about the exhibition from the curator Francesco Bonami

Works of art on paper have always had a special place within art collections. Paper has an identity and a history that predates works of art on canvas or sculptures. It is the medium and also the material that is intrinsically suited for communication. From ancient parchments to the pages of medieval manuscripts, paper has always been the “carrier” of political, religious or artistic messages.

The works selected for this exhibition at the Galleria d’Arte Moderna in Milan have contemporary messages that the artists even today put on paper instead of a canvas or a more aggressive medium, as if they wanted to protect the content and the subjects of their messages.

Year after Year. Opere su carta dalla UBS Art Collection is organized thematically by the following groups: Women, Shapes, Portraits, Gestures and Words. Our idea is to have an exhibition that develops like a conversation, like at a small party where the various works meet and talk to each other, as if in episodes staged for a film or for theatre.
An important aspect of the exhibition is the high quality of the art works, which is a clear indication that UBS did not collect these works from the point of view of a corporation, but with the spirit of a museum. The Bank selected works that are able to maintain their artistic presence over time, ones that can go beyond trends and beyond celebrating the latest famous names. The works in this collection reveal that, in the intimacy of a piece of paper, these great artists can express themselves with skill and perhaps more precisely than they could with large works of art. With this exhibition, UBS offers all of us the opportunity to see how a collection of art can continually seek out wide-ranging points of view that are at the same time always precise. The philosophy behind the UBS collection is therefore another possible way to interpret a very important group of works that has been rigorously selected.

Francesco Bonami