Correnti IV - Sublimare
curated by Roberto Lacarbonara
exhibition views at Rita Urso artopiagallery, Milan
May 18 - September 15, 2023
Photos by Riccardo Pasciucco
Correnti IV - Sublimare is a group exhibition featuring the artists Niamh O’Malley (1975, Ireland), Namsal Siedlecki (1986, USA) and Alessandro Vizzini (1985, Italy), curated by Roberto Lacarbonara.
The fourth exhibition episode, Sublimare, delves into the concept of correnti with a psychic, perceptual and energetic lens. Changes of state, transfigurations and metamorphoses, linguistic shifts and visual, sensitive, and formal migrations: these are all the phenomena and aspects regarding sublimation, a term which, in the dual meaning of physics and psychoanalysis, defines a model of transformation of matter and spirit.
In the works of the three artists on display, each sculptural and object element is captured in its “evolutionary state”, in its renewal process. We witness moments of transition and changes: when things and stories cease to exist to become pure form, solid presence, visible synthesis of invisible forces.
Le Sorgenti (2021) by Alessandro Vizzini are architectures conceived starting from the hollow, negative, and empty space that flows between the vertical layers of the sculpture, so to render the idea of air passage that fosters and agitates spaces from within, like a soul that crosses the matter and vivifies it. Instead, the optical-perceptual processes are the ones that let the elements of the natural landscape find a formal break, a plastic configuration in sculptural objects processed both with primary materials and techniques - wood, earth, clay - both with design solutions - polyurethane, resins, paints.
The objets trouvés with which Niamh O’Malley works on her sculptural assemblages come from urban and industrial contexts. The Irish artist investigates the perceptual differences that materials impose on a slow and thorough observation. Glass is the privileged material of her three-dimensional still lifes and contributes to activating different modes of vision: opaque, transparent, or reflective. This material leads the observer’s gaze toward the surface or beyond its luminous, chromatic, plastic filter.
An archaic window, conceived by Namsal Siedlecki, created through the fusion of glass and wolf ashes, becomes the threshold device that, acting as in Limes (2017), defines the boundary between subject and object, between nature and culture, between man and animal, in that thin transparent interstice in which is played the relationship of inclusion and exclusion that is at the base of every civilization (like the Roman one, to which the work alludes). But this exchange, this flow through the boundaries, is also an act that creates and dismantles the body matter, as it happens to the couple in Viandanti (2020), a mold of two ex-votos casts in zinc and subjected to an incessant process of electrolyte exchange; or as in Deposizione (2020) in which the calcite sediments that embed a canvas, long left in the water of a “petrifying fountain”, seem to associate the genesis of sculpture to the millennial phenomena of geology.
Niamh O' Malley
Niamh O’Malley (Co. Mayo, IRE, 1975) lives and works in Dublin. Niamh O’Malley’s artwork reveals a profound appreciation for the act of trying. Trying to catch a certain slant of light, trying to prove a pattern or uncover a composition, trying to fathom a mountain, trying to hold time still. Working with the moving image, mark making and sculptural materials such as glass and wood, O’Malley’s work attempts to contain and reflect the weight and wonder of the world in its becoming. It is the act of trying, in the face of predictable failure, that gives way to conviction and a sense of hope within the artist’s work. Full of reflection, both literal and metaphorical, filled with absence and framed by negative space, O’Malley’s work asserts something unstoppable about the human spirit, something that neither distance nor death can extinguish. O’Malley has made numerous solo exhibitions in recent years including mother’s tankstation limited, Dublin (2020); Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin (2019); Lismore Castle Arts, Lismore (2019); Grazer Kunstverein, Graz (2018); Bluecoat, Liverpool (2015); Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin (2017) & (2015); a five venue solo show called ‘The Mayo Collaborative’, Ireland (2013); ‘Garden’, Project Arts Centre, Dublin (2013); ‘Ha Gamle’, Prestegard (2012); ‘Model’, Green on Red Gallery, Dublin (2011); ‘Island’, Centre Culturel Montehermoso, Vitoria-Gasteiz (2010); ‘Frame, Glass, Black’ Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris (2010); ‘Echo’, Gaain Gallery, Seoul (2010); ‘No Distance’, Void, Derry (2009). In 2022 she represents Ireland at the 59th Venice Biennale.
Namsal Siedlecki (Greenfield, USA, 1986) lives and works in Seggiano (GR). His research moves towards the alchemical and functional transformation of matter and objects. Starting from the observation of their anthropological and symbolic component, he analyzes the action of organic and inorganic agents, natural and artificial, elaborating a sculptural practice able to exhibit the metamorphic process of elements. Resorting to artificial manipulation of objects - with techniques such as electrostatic galvanization, calcification, fusion, and mold - the artist restores a new, altered identity to things, showing their ever-changing, ambiguous, evolving side. In 2015 he won the Cy Twombly Italian Affiliated Fellow in Visual Arts at the American Academy in Rome; in 2019 the Club Gamec Prize and the Cairo Prize. Recent exhibitions include MAXXI, Rome (2022); Centro per l’Arte Contemporanea Luigi Pecci, Prato, (2022); Villa Medici, Rome (2020); In Extenso, Clermont-Ferrand (2019); Villa Romana, Florence (2016); Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin (2014).
Alessandro Vizzini (Cagliari, ITA, 1985) lives and works between Rome and Milan. His sculptural production, close to the practice of design and elaborated through a careful coexistence of organic and synthetic materials, is characterized by the observation and formal reworking of urban, natural, and Mediterranean landscapes. His works emerge from the visual and perceptual component of the objects, translating impressions into volumes: essential solid presences featuring a strong, plastic, and chromatic synthesis. An aesthetics of fragment that opens deep narrative implications and allows psychographic suggestions. Recent exhibitions Fondazione Pastificio Cerere, Rome (2022); Spazio Mensa, Rome (2021); Museo Nivola, Orani (2020); Villa Medici Accademia di Francia, Rome, (2019); Fondazione Baruchello, Rome (2017); American Academy, Rome, (2017); Marselleria, Milan (2016).