LoosenArt Mag / Gallery

Still Life. Alternative Exposures

Posted on January 27 2020

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Author Silvia Colombo
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Still Life. Alternative Exposures │ 3rd January - 4th February 2020
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It is fascinating to see how gathering objects that are then accumulated in some parts of someone’s life – houses, storages, museums and cabinets – often thrills people. The reasons pushing them to act like that are variable and comprised in a range that goes from fetishism to interest or passion. In any of these cases, a possessive connection that links us, humans, to them, objects, shows up and rules. As the Nobel prize Orhan Pamuk wrote in the Museum of Innocence’s catalogue (which is, by the way, the museum he founded), “the power of things inheres in the memories they gather up inside them, and also in the vicissitudes of our imagination, and our memory – of this there is no doubt”[1]. In other words, as soon as someone owns an object or an image, a story starts, a story that one might – or might not –tell. In this chaos, in this cloud where people and objects meet, still life demands its own place. The genre, born in order to capture those moments, silently represents those stories, symbols and traditions.
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Ivan Charin, Chemical Reagent, 2016  Buy it
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Through the ages, the artists practising still life, painted and – at a later stage – took pictures of compositions made up of vegetables and food, music instruments, books, as they were able to talk about a certain kind of lifestyle, certain types of manners or simply to show us spectacular, ordinary things. The exhibition “Still Life”, open at Spazio Millepiani in Rome from January 3 to February 4, 2020, does that, interpreting and materialising the artist­s’ thoughts. Besides their being something else than just representations of items placed in particular contexts, the visual works here exhibited document experimentations, processes as well as projects and professions. The silent conversation between the details portrayed establishes in its turn an immediate dialogue with the public. It is just through a detail of an old, decaying room that the artists suggest the observer there is something more behind the picture – such as stories coming from the past dealing with suffering and abandonment.
Flowers and plants are not allegories anymore, documenting instead ongoing processes conducted during an artist in residence programme, for example, or on other occasions. Mirrors and water reflections, as well as dust and tapestries, can be thus interpreted as references other places and other times - not clear though if we are dealing with the past or the future. The absence of colours, together with the use of old techniques, alludes also to a different age, helping the image becoming a complex reenactment, more than a simple homage to something or someone. Geometric compositions and naturalia shots are an aesthetic reinterpretation of different kinds of collections. In all this, we can ask ourselves which is the profound meaning of every object represented. We can guess, or - like negatives - we can just be impressed by those photos.
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Maayan Sophia Weisstub, Crumbled Still Life, 2019  Buy it
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Maayan Sophia Weisstub, Melting Flowers, 2019  Buy it
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Constantine Marakhov, Wilhelm Tell, 2018  Buy it
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Aennor, Rooted, Consumables, 2019 │ Buy it
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Aennor, Kelp, Consumables, 2019  Buy it
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Michael Koch, Solo, 2018
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Michael Koch, Ex Mountain, 2018
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Giovanni Cappiello, Allegory of Five Senses / Dennis DeHart, Flos / Alexandra Opie, Wonder Box #187 / Terry Towery, Untitled #029, Useless Beauty
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