Francisco Tropa's practice is essentially oriented towards sculpture, often in association with the photographic or cinematic image. References to antiquity, science and technology, and art history are interwoven, resulting in a multifaceted investigation aimed at dissecting the act of creation. The Lung and the Heart exhibition seeks to give form to the creative principles that define life and the workings of the world and of living beings.
A certain strangeness emerges from the work of Francisco Tropa and his constant search for a balance between conceptual thinking and traditional skills. Opening with Scipio's Dream and an ancient vision of the Cosmos, the exhibition closes with another dream: that of the narrator of Gradiva (1903), Wilhelm Jensen's famous short story set in the city of Pompeii during the tragic eruption of Mount Vesuvius. The setting is a metaphysical, dreamlike landscape calling on us to travel through different worlds and identify their motive forces. The muted, crepuscular light and the rhythm of interacting mechanisms conjure up a sensory experience. Set at the centre of the exhibition, the installation the Lung and the Heart is based on a principle of repetition and a consideration of the extraordinary functionality of the human body. Located on the same floor as the permanent collection, the exhibition conducts an ongoing dialogue with the great masters of modernity, who made their fascination with the machine one of the founding principles of their practice.
Devised as a condensed monograph, the Lung and the Heart is structured around movement and time frames – recurrent concerns in the artist's work – and puts into perspective the notion of cycles, the mechanics of terrestrial and celestial bodies, and the idea of the whole. The exhibition is accompanied by an artist's book designed as an integral part of the project and including a guide for visitors.