« Open the crate » he said with a curious smile.
« How? I don’t have a screwdriver » replied the other.
« Here take this », as he handed over a drill.
The other began drilling away.
« No ! Unscrew the screws you screwball ! »
« Uh...yeh...right ! », the other started.
But he couldn’t manage it. The screws weren’t really there. The two boneheaded art handlers were both severely mistaken. It wasn’t a crate at all. It was a faux wood zig-zag thing - a sort of David Smith sculpture meets a Philip Guston painting. The illusory screw heads were one with the body of the thing- an assembled structure of wooden planks with all the details showing like a comic book. Knots, grooves, grains, screw and nail heads, incised and drawn precisely into the surface, then arranged and combined like a piece of living furniture that had no purpose, other than to be. It appeared alive, from its base elevating into a zig-zagvertical form, as if unfolding itself and achieving heightened awareness. Like a wooden Neolithic creature preserved from a distant time, it stood in perfect suspended animation.
Carl D’Alvia is an American artist of Italian descent. He is the recent recipient of the Rome Prize (2013/14) and will exhibit at the Museo di Ascoli Piceno (Galleria D’Arte Contemporanea «O. Licini») in Central Italy this summer. D’Alvia works in two and three-dimensional modeled figures of various scales, mediums and color. Even his inspirations, Constantin Brancusi, Tony Smith, Carroll Dunham, Richard Artschwager or Phillip Guston may chuckle at the work, due to Carl’s darkly comical, head on approach to history. He melds modern world conundrums in socio-economical, ecological and evolutionary status, with that of being. D’Alvia’s work requests, but does not command, the viewer to recognize the depths of the figure’s innermost disposition covered by satirically fabled coats of feathers, wood grain, hair, scales or noodles. Their lack of gesture suggests a certain incongruous relationship with the environment around them, yet they attract the eye of passers by to enter their space and feel their humility.
We are pleased to announce an exhibition of new works by Gianluca Di Pasquale.
His best known works are landscape paintings composed almost only by figures, painted with precise brush strokes inside a large white space. Apart from some people, a few trees, some architectural details, there is almost nothing but white painted canvas. Yet in the imagination the immaculate space becomes mountains, sea, a square or a street. The scenarios are those of our leisure time: ski slopes, parks, trails, large urban squares, beaches - places of encounter and mediation between nature and civilization, where people aggregate, creating rhythms and constellations dictated by the forms of the landscape.
In the most recent works nature, trees and vegetation have become the main actors in the scene. They delicately invade the space with arabesques and patterns of leaves, branches, grass helms and flowers. Loosely referencing Henri Rousseau, Di Pasquale creates new images of paradise where wild animals and humans live together in peace. Di Pasquale’s nature is hypertrophic, but also suspended and silent, observing us from inside his paintings through archetypal animals that resemble guards or sentinels, protecting the landscape that, in turn, protects them. The animals become guides on a path the artist invites us to follow inside nature, getting lost and finding ourselves again, encouraging us to stop and think, triggering a moment of suspension from the frenzy of contemporary life.
Faithful to his poetics, once again Gianluca Di Pasquale attempts not so much to describe reality as to recreate, in painting, landscapes close to his idea of harmony.
Gianluca Di Pasquale was born in Rome in 1971; he lives and works in Milan.