The Gallery Apart in Rome is currently hosting The Garden of Phersu, the latest collection of works that Italian artist Alessandro Scarabello produced after gaining an MFA at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts-KASK in Ghent (B) and his relocation in Brussels. An extensive and intensive research that materializes in a series of large and medium-scale paintings and drawings on paper that show not only an artistic evolution but also the continuity with the artist’s previous works, which The Gallery Apart has been following since its very beginning.
The exhibition’s title chosen by Scarabello is a reference that is halfway between history and myth as it recalls the enigmatic figure of Phersu, a character reproduced on the frescoes of Etruscan tombs at Tarquinia (Italy), characterized by physiognomic and proxemic elements that fully render the characteristic of a mask. The work by Scarabello has always been related to the drama, the mask, the staging, but today his research is focused on the more specific field of identity. Like in a negative photographic image, the artist tackles it from the point of view of the depersonalisation, in an attempt to clarify how people, in contact with mass culture, with the “show” and the constant proliferation of images, change themselves in order to better adapt to reality so as to effectively pursue strategies, sometimes even instinctive and unconscious, aimed at overcoming the atavistic fear of death. Strategies that sometimes have grotesque and clumsy connotations, highlighting how men’s reaction to contemporaneity may be awkward, just like their behaviour. This was made possible by the experimentation of the artist on tridimensionality through the breaking of the canvas and the overlaying of pieces of paintings, influenced by a strong attraction to abstract art which manifested itself with an impulse that pushed him towards the exasperation of gestures and shapes.
THE GARDEN OF PHERSU
The Gallery Apart
Via Francesco Negri, 43
Rome, till 31.07.2016
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