Milan’s San Paolo converso church welcomes orange tennis court

Untitled (plot for dialogue)  is a neo-orange tennis court installed in a 16th century church, in Lombardy, Italy. the art installation is  currently the centrepiece of the  Chiesa di San Paolo Converso   church   (built  for the convent of the Order of the Angeliche  and later abandoned )  and sits in an exhibition space, devoted to more modernist arts — now  headquarters of the architectural firm CLS Architetti.

Asad Raza exploration of inhabited space couple with social practices, between human and non-human beings, and objects is an inspiration for this piece, which frames the building perfectly blending well  with the baroque façade. And as a nod to ‘complementing contrast’ , and  the 16th century’s exploration of light and shadow, and dramatic intensity.  Asad  introduced flooring, lines, netting, racquets, iced jasmine tea, and coaches for a tennis-like game

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re-purposing the  former minster , a place of singular interaction, into a lax area two-way exchange and recreation. Here he reorients the sport as a reflection on the importance of non-productive activities in a society focused on work. For Raza, the game serves as a method of absorbing energetic drives into symbolic but non-harmful practices.

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Visitors to Untitled (plot for dialogue)become more than spectators—practising with the coaches, they inhabit their bodies in coordinated action. Players respond to each other through the medium of the ball and the plot of the court. The piece places the experience of play above purely visual appreciation, as the back-and-forth of tennis exchanges produces meditative beauty.

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The church’s frescos, the work of Giulio and Antonio Campi, depict the conversion, baptism, miracles and martyrdom of Paul the Apostle. , Maria Callas , erected between 1549 and 1619 it was  reconsecrated after a decree by Napoleon. leading to its second life as a storage space until it was was renovated and became a concert hall.

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Converso welcomes the public to intact wit the installation through the week; except sundays, offering  exhibitions and events for  Artists of different ages, places, and creative languages to interact and also invites them to come develop arts projects  which interact with the hanging space’s historical, architectural and symbolic features.

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Prospective projects are featured on the stage, floating, in a monumental interior. No walls surround the stage. It is merely a flat surface. The exhibited projects themselves float as well. They never fully affirm themselves and must always contend with the church’s magniloquence.

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