artists & participants
Speaking of painting today increasingly means having to deal with a protean, dense matter that is in constant turmoil and can no longer be easily categorized or labeled according to rigid taxonomies. And even the word “technique” has witnessed an opening up to other media with their being metabolized by painting itself, which inevitably goes beyond its limits to determine and, as Michele Tocca writes, “investigate its possibilities and explore its developments.” At the same time it is important to note that the (self)-awareness of painting should inevitably shift from a hoarding of history and stories, memory and tradition, not through a simplistic recovery of the genius loci, but by drawing on the roots of a more or less remote past, looking at the major and minor masters, as demonstrated by the works of Angelo Mosca and Michele Tocca, which were recently on display at Casino dei Principi di Villa Torlonia in Rome and published in the book Pittura italiana… e altre storie minori (Italian painting … and other minor stories).
Le declinazioni della pittura (The variations of painting) is an effort to take account of all these issues, following a research pathway ideally spanning from the show Appunti di Pittura (Notes on Painting), curated by Enzo Cucchi in 2011 at MARCA in Catanzaro, to the group exhibition Gruppo di pittori in un interno (Group of Painters in a Flat) at Galleria O. in Rome, curated by Damiano Gullì (2014), both based on a reconsideration of the canons of painting and the desire of bringing together (or contrasting) painters radically different from each other in terms of education, experience and age, in order to bring out subtle similarities in their different modi operandi and highlight the deep awareness of painting (which is pure painting or expanded painting) and its intrinsic potential. The worlds created by the various artists and expressed through veiling, sfumato, signs, shapes, backgrounds, and more or less fast gestures always imply a concept of painting as a “mental thing.” An attitude to consider that painting that is not limited to the materials and technique but that elevates the art until it becomes abstract, conceptualizing it. A methodology for addressing painting by analyzing it, sometimes even in a tautological manner, challenging and dissecting it to obtain its essence, sense and meaning.