The Oxymoron Materiality
On Colours and Textures
Experimenting with ZBrush and MCor
How does the perception of touch make its now route through digital materiality?
Sci-Arc Design Studio with Florencia Pita and Ezio Blasetti
Peacock Surface video
Coral Necklaces Prototypes
Touch, tap, pinch and blink; pervasive displayers are in control of reality through flat images, which are thresholds to parallel worlds. The installation “Plato’s Cube” looks at disrupting, breaking and tearing apart the commodification of the Real, as pursued by smart technology. In the past geometry has been used by physician, mathematicians, artist, architects and philosophers to understand the form of the Real. During Modernism geometry, and in particular the Platonic one, became the tangible form of the surrounding for the feasibility related to the conveyor belt production and the metaphysical message that symmetry, in particular, represented for totalitarian regimes. Nonetheless for artists and architects geometry embodied the many fragments of the Real, whose linear composition, or assemblage, defined the new harmonic order between man and Nature.
“Plato’s Cube” unfolds the geometry of the platonic cube. The exterior surface is made of painted wood and the interior one is tiled of different size mirrors. Once the viewer approaches the space he/she sees his/her image reflected on a single mirror that covers entirely one of the six faces of the cube; the viewer sees something familiar, a reality as normally known and expected.
However, by making the corner, the familiar image breaks, as the mirrors that tile the remaining 5 faces of the cube exponentially multiply the viewer’s single reflection. The “familiarity” “cracks”, thus disrupting the viewer’s expectation. The “known” disappears for kaleidoscopic reflections of the self.
There are many selves. Reality is no longer as familiar as one’s expectations may predict, as it takes on multiple shapes and forms. The flat displayer, i.e. the “unfold” of the 3D cube, plays the role of the “flat technology” that customizes reality according to our desires and interests, with the effect of producing overlapping “Reals”, which are commodified objects of controlled entertainment. However “Plato’s Cube” inverts such condition; it is a single and multiform “Real” by which we might question the experience of the everyday.
Which kind of service art offers to 2.0Society, whose experience of the world comes via images that take users to place interaction as core activity of Being and Dwelling this world? This is the trigger of my proposal, whose main reference is the 1952 Disney “Alice in Wonderland” cartoon. In order to access Wonderland Alice needs to change her physical aspect. This happens though drinking water and eating biscuits. The Art Fair is an experience per se; visitors experience artist’ narratives that carry complexities through visual content. My work is thought to be at the entrance and, like Alice, it plays like drink and biscuit by preparing visitors to enter the main event. EATmeDRINKme explores, to reinvent, the basic artistic concept of Subject/Object by making Object domain of many 2.0Subjects, which act as social networks by holding real and physical shape that never leaves the real. When visitors walk through the entrance see a flat surface, 2,40×4,30m tiled in 2160 ceramics and hold by an aluminium frame behind, whose pattern refers to Baroque Sicilian ceramic floors. Nevertheless the surface is no longer flat: it folds three times around the space. The stable and familiar architectural concept of floor, made to last undefined time, slips, hits the walls and folds. Its rigidity becomes fluid and inverts the familiar perception of space where floors are horizontal and under our feet. Like Alice in the chamber before Wonderland, things are not like are supposed to be, floors are ceiling and viceversa. My proposal flips visitor’s familiar perception of real space, to prepare them to Wonderland, i.e. Frieze Fair and Reality. The Subject makes users investigate (un)familiar perception of reality by reversing stereotypes. To achieve it tiles are sometimes mirrors, which engage visitors by taking their image to Wonderland: the door is passed.
Luoghi di Incontro
Coming soon at Border Body Mixing Identities
Italy, February 13/21
“Luoghi di Incontro” celebrates space as place of interaction;
it is a mechanism for an acknowledged understanding of the surrounding, which, conversely to any traditional depiction whose interpretation is limited to the object of representation, attracts the viewer through a mesmerising reflective surface. By looking through bits of details, which define the frontal depiction, a reflected image of the self appears, which mystifies the viewer. As initial reaction there is wonder, which makes one interrogate about the ‘reality’ of things as ‘seen’ through our eyes. Indeed, in “Luoghi di Incontro” the frontal image is second layer which peels out of the wall to reveal another interpretation of the same subject, which still doesn’t resemble the ‘objective’ Real;
What am I seeing here?
What is the ‘exhibited image’?
What we understand as solid objective reference is just another subjective interpretation of the real.
Drawing investigations through finger tips moving on iPhone screen
Work in progress… still from the video…
2013, 70 x 90
“Natura Apparente” is based on the “Still Nature” iconography (Natura Morta), where a yellow mouse, a Hard Disk, a graphic and a mother board lay on the top of tilted rough surface. “Natura Apparente” employs and takes to the extreme traditional chiaroscuro shades, which are interrupted by digital touches of brushes and ghostly fabric; these brushes point out that there is another matter beyond the depicted one, another kind of real. The bunch of technological stuff is then just vehicle of different realities in the digital world. Brushes work like Lucio Fontana’s cuts applied to canvas. There is another real, a kind that makes the depicted one a labile ontological state.
2013, 70 x 90, Printed Canvas on Wood
“Ricordare” is a hybrid image that crosses the field of photography and digital images.
The subject of my work is the Italian diaspora:
The title, which is the infinitive form of the verb “to remember” and depicts the never ending wait on something which is due to happen but never will, makes one recall fragments of the past,
I.e. one’s personal memories.
“Ricordare” is currently on view at
borderbody| mixing cities and identities – poland 2013
Aedo is a ‘leaned’ tapestry inspired by William Morris’s Art and Craft Movement. With the intent of re-establishing harmony between the ‘unnatural’ English Industrial Revolution society and Mother Nature – by means of the accessibility provided by conveyor belt production – Morris designed a series of patterns for interior decoration based on natural forms. Nevertheless natural patterns represented an occasion for society to regain the Arcadia age, i.e. the ancient Greek paradise where human being lived in harmony with its environment.
Aedo’s pattern re elaborates and extents Morris’s concept in contemporary digital society.
Indeed, if Morris’s tapestries were means for bringing society back to Arcadia, Aedo warns its public of the common loss of touch with the real – which is nature itself – because of the deliberate and acknowledged attitude of escaping reality via digital filters applied to it. In other words the common use of app filters detaches ‘users’ from their real, which, on its turn, becomes just an imaginary scenario rendered as custom depiction. If in Morris society natural landscapes were vehicles for creating a new bound with nature, via industrial production, Aedo uses the language of digital culture for re engaging people with the real, as it becomes a particular ‘analogue’ filter applied to the surrounding with whom people interact. The aedo was a storyteller living in the ancient Greece in charge of transmitting and preserving culture via stories. In other words the aedo was the person in charge of filtering the real with myth to transfer current generation’s values to posterity. In the space of the Tent London Aedo ‘filters’ the surrounding. However it leans down. The melted fantastic scenario printed on it and the leaning position are the interactive kernels: Morris’s design is melted and the tapestry does no longer stand on a wall. This combination engages visitors, as it becomes Aedo’s visual message, or story, to tell visitors. As its ancestor, Aedo filters real and digital realms by mystifying their role in society. While crumbling, Aedo’s graphic melts and with it the harmony between men and nature represented by Morris. This is a reaction from people’s loss of touch with the real. In other words Morris’ tapestry – work for re-establish harmony- leaves the vertical wall and crumbles. Hence it follows Aedo’s invitation to reflect upon our tendency of dwelling fantasies for detaching from the real.
Partire Lasciare Ricordare
“Partire Lasciare Ricordare” are hybrid images, which are inspired by the Italian diaspora.
The verb at the infinite of the title gives the extent of a never ending wait for something to happen, while thinking on the past, i.e. one’s personal memories.
The reference I took is Umberto Boccioni’s “Quelli che partono. Stati d’Animo” and “Quelli che restano”
Vucciria2.0 is an interactive cube designed for the exhibition “Fatti Conoscere” in Catania, Italy. The design process together with the relation that the cube establishes with the gallery space explain my vision of making architecture in our society, which is hybrid between the digital and the real. The cube is at first memory of my land, Sicily, whose coat, made of a colorful graphic, is modelled around Renato Guttuso’s painting “La Vucciria”, the farmer market in Palermo. When I think about Sicily this painting comes to my mind, as I think it synthesis the Sicilian life style; colorful grocery is exhibited on inclined shelves and small labyrinth paths branch through them, to the extent that it is not possible to not cross somebody’s way. Vucciria2.0 abstracts these elements by placing the cube on a mirrored podium where visitors, and the graphic itself, reflect their image. The mirrored podium becomes then an interactive platform that somehow recreates the crowded streets of Palermo’s farmer market. The crowd feeling is rendered by the kaleidoscopic effect defined by the infinite repetition of the reflected images, which, on their turn, enhance colors, the memory of my land. To add reflections fluidity I cut the edges of the cube so that perspective rays can run through the edges and the reflection points are multiplied. The edge cuts are modelled around Futuristic paintings, in particular Umberto Boccioni, where the motion effect is visually represented by faceted figures. In other words the figural turns abstract to interpret the way human eyes see and perceive figures in motion.
Architecture is for me a value applied to constructions, which enriches them with a sensorial perception caught by senses not by the eye. Through balanced relations, architecture can offer a social value to communities that bring a shared respect for coexistence. Architecture is then a form of art directed to community to which it provides spaces for cohabitation. Within these terms aesthetic is a vehicle that interfaces our thoughts, memories and collective coexistence. Although ideas belong to the single, or a restricted group of people, public display make them part of community. For me this is the most exciting moment of making architecture. My work intents to engage, either you may agree or not, viewers asked to interact with it. My work completes its process of communication when the individual act becomes collective. For this reason I called the cube Vucciria 2.0. I am referring to the second generation of web pages, such as blogs and social networks, which expect the user to interact with content. Vucciria 2.0 extents in space and time the “poiesis” of design, whereas the act of exhibiting makes architecture dynamic –a platform- that projects its essence beyond aesthetic.