Pedro Costa & Pieter Schoolwerth

Adaptation

October 18 — November 15, 2009

Opening on Sunday, October 18th, Miguel Abreu Gallery is pleased to present Adaptation, a two-part exhibition featuring a film by Portuguese director, Pedro Costa, and a new painting by Pieter Schoolwerth. The exhibition functions like a kind of diptych in which a single painting, a reworking of a 17th-century picture by Hendrik ter Brugghen, will hang in the front gallery while a documentary film, Danièle Huillet / Jean-Marie Straub: Où gît votre sourire enfoui? (Where Lies Your Hidden Smile?), will be screened continuously in the main gallery on the other side of a bisecting wall.

The underlying intention is to present and confront, without comment, two intensely engaging, yet sharply different attitudes towards adapting pre-existing literary and art historical material. Pedro Costa’s film apprehends Straub and Huillet in the process of editing Sicilia!, their adaptation of Elio Vittorini’s novel Conversazione in Sicilia (Conversations in Sicily, 1937-1938), while Pieter Schoolwerth’s painting transforms Esau Selling His Birthright (1627) by a leading member of the Dutch Caravaggisti from Utrecht.