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Italian Vibrations

30 April 2013
Published in Culture, Primo Piano
by Nadesha Mijoba

The “Italian Vibrations” show injects a paradigm shift to the New London, buy cialis Connecticut environment, arriving at the cutting-edge space of Provenance Center. Walking into this gallery one is confronted by a startling diversity of artistic expression.

Architect and designer, Antonio Pio Saracino, brings us his “Star Chairs”, recently premiered in Dubai’s annual design expo immediately prior to this show. Do we sit on these works of art, or just view and circle them? Certainly the artist would not be upset if anyone were to sit down, but the setting unquestionably gives one pause for reflection. The Star Chairs – manufactured in Italy by Lamberti Design – give us a rare opportunity to experience a threshold where art and functionality merge.

In the work of Verdiana Patachini, one senses a search, an existential exploration with no discernible map or direction. The amorphous quality of each work is simultaneously punctuated with symbols, words and vague images representing a dream-like state, while each work possesses a depth and passion in the desire to reveal her journey inward.

The “Stitched Bridge” of Borinquen Gallo, lies like an abandoned alien carcass. Closer inspection reveals intricacies of form that are both biological and emotive. Cloth spirals, vegetative and flower shapes project a human presence, the bridge-like structure providing a means of climbing towards a more ethereal plane. This bridge could be a ladder, beckoning the viewer to climb up or down, a returning to or escaping from. Commodification of emotion is revealed in Gallo’s cement castings of hearts like a display in an “organ store”, where the sale of body parts has become more common than most realize. Advances in science have fostered the feasibility of such businesses, yet what is the emotional and psychological fall-out from such “final” commodification?

The “Martyr” rests quietly on the wall, exhausted from struggle, dripping in pain, each ripple of tar silent in its tormented presence. Why do most of us find it both offensive and praiseworthy that one should be willing to endure torture and death for a belief? Paolo Pelosini presents us with love unto death, for mustn’t we be deeply in love if we are willing to die rather than renounce a belief?

Alessandro Del Pero gives us his martyr in “Effort”, a crucifixion seemingly in progress. The presence of the artist is palpable – one expects to see him step back, out of the frame of his work and continue with another swirl of line and form. Del Pero works his sacrificial figure, painting and sketching impatiently as if the image, as well as the environment, need to be captured immediately, before disappearing back into the spiritual cavern of mind and being. The “head” pieces of del Pero convey a comparable frenetic quality of motion and impatience. Nonetheless, particularly in his “Harlem Heads”, the images are a bit more grounded; the eyes, as anchors for the soul, transform each work with a special focus and presence.

In Andrea Bianconi’s videos, the artist portrays the “mental cinema” which never ceases in its projection of images, words, symbols and thoughts. In its circular logic, our minds are engaged in a constant activity of construction and deconstruction. We impose our psychological selves, along with experience, on all new events. To every such encounter we bring our most intimate thoughts, our most private emotions. What we choose to release to the world is different in each situation and for each individual. Our public self is but a fraction of that which lies within.

Despite the outwardly divergent conceptual messages as curated by Alessandro Berni, “Italian Vibrations” offers a uniquely coherent vision onto the stage of current international art. Italian blood flows at Provenance Center, infusing us all with strength and creative vitality.

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