September 4 - October 30, 2005
MU and Area 51
In June 2001, MU organised the exhibition ZONE, which was entirely centred on the relationship between art, architecture and skateboarding. ZONE proved to be a very successful showing with far-reaching consequences: in July 2002, skatepark Area 51 and with it MU Bowl, Europe’s largest wooden skatebowl, got off to a flying start in a disused hangar in the residential area Meerwijk. MU took the initiative for the development as well as the realisation of the bowl. In close cooperation with the Eindhoven city council, the Technical University Eindhoven, Maurer United Architects and the Eindhoven skaters, the dream of the MU Bowl became reality. With annually well over twenty thousand visitors from home and abroad, the skatepark put Eindhoven on the map as the hotspot for skateboarders. With the exhibition Clues About The Rest Of The World, MU and Area 51 want to add a new dimension to their cooperation.
Since his childhood in Clifton, New Jersey, Bobby Puleo has spent a large part of his life skateboarding. He started skating in 1985, became a pro (professional skater) in 1997 and has in the past seven years travelled round the globe many times. During his numerous travels and in particular in New York, where he currently resides, Bobby Puleo started picking up ‘trash’ from the street. When you’re out in the street skating, you’re constantly looking down at the street surface, searching the challenges and obstacles you could skate on, under or through, and you’re bound to see a lot of stuff that people have thrown away or lost.
Bobby Puleo’s collector’s mania started in Harlem, when he found a discarded photo of a young girl. Gradually, his collection of ‘found objects’ has evolved into various categories: post-it notes, broken CD cases, audio-cassettes, fake dollar bills. As an artist, Puleo was in first instance mostly inspired by graffiti. Like graffiti, the objects he collects are intrinsic to the raw streets and endless public spaces of a metropolis. His collections and categorisations lend the objects a new identity. A broken audio-cassette may not be something spectacular in itself, but a collage of forty audio-cassettes expresses a pattern, a statement about a medium on its way out.
Through his work, Bobby Puleo manages to find beauty and to restructure the urban chaos of a metropolis like New York. Apart from creating his collages of ‘found objects’, Puleo is getting more and more involved in photography. He makes photos of New Yorkers, people in absurd situations, but he has also had a large collection of found negatives printed. Each of these anonymous photos tells a private and enigmatic tale about life in the metropolis New York. Part of the showing is a video film by Tobin Yelland, who followed Puleo with his camera on his numerous searchings through the city streets.Bobby Puleo’s first showing took place at Philadelphia’s Space 1026 Gallery and got rave reviews. Just like his exhibition in New Image Art in Los Angeles (October 2004), Bobby Puleo’s show attracted visitors from both the art and the skate scene.
In 2004 and 2005, numerous articles about his life as an artist and a professional skateboarder were published in national and international magazines. Recently, a DVD was released containing a compilation of his best skateboard performances. The showing at MU is Bobby Puleo’s first solo exhibition in Europe.
Art in Area 51
MU is of the opinion that Bobby Puleo’s work, which is raw rather than perfected, should be better showcased in a location like Area 51 than on the walls of a more conventional art space.
It goes without saying that a separate exhibition room will be created within the skatepark to make sure that the works aren’t pushed into the background by the dynamism and activity of the skatepark. Visitors of the skating space have free admission to the exhibition room, which will be a small oasis of peace and quiet.
The showing of Bobby Puleo’s work will introduce art to young skateboarders at a place where they feel comfortable. The works of this artist link up with their perception of the world, the artist is a hero skateboarder they respect and revere. To them, the showing will be a eye-opening introduction to the art world, broadening their views and interests in an organic way.
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 10.00-18.00h, Sat. 11.00-17.00h, Sun. 13.00-17.00h