Giuseppe Penone

To Unroll One’s Skin

1970

Original title
Svolgere la propria pelle
Medium
648 photographs, gelatin silver print on paper, mounted onto 18 panels
Dimensions
Panel, each: 535 x 735 x 25 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Presented by Tate Members 2011
Reference
P80079

Display caption

This is one of a number of works in which Penone uses the surface of the body to explore the relationship between sight and touch. Each of the individual photographs in this work shows a small rectangle of clear glass pressed against the artist’s skin. Together, the more than six hundred images document every part of his body. Arranged in a grid, it is as if his body has been broken up into a series of flattened planes, a process that resembles a kind of map-making.

Gallery label, July 2015