Giovanni Ozzola’s Industrial and Desert Visions Come to the Subtropical Island of Hong Kong
Before his new exhibition “Dove nasce il vento” opens at Gazelli Art House in London later this month, Italian artist Giovanni Ozzola is having a moment in Asia. This week Ozzola is the focus of the gallery’s presentation at Art Central Hong Kong and simultaneously, some two hours away, his video Garage - Sometimes You Can See Much More (2009–12) goes on view at China’s Guangdong Museum of Art, in a new exhibition, “LandSeaSky.”
While Ozzola’s art spans sculpture, photography, and video, at Art Central he is represented through a selection of large-scale, color stills taken from his meditative video works. Ozzola is driven by his interest in our place in the universe—enormous when compared to an ant’s, infinitesimal when contextualized by time and outer space—as well as the seemingly ungraspable concept of infinity. He is fascinated by light, which often suffuses his work, or, sometimes, is absent from it.
Garage-Sometimes You Can See Much More (2009–12) encapsulates these shifts from darkness to light. In one part of the video viewers are presented with the dark striations of a garage door, with a glowing stripe of light bleeding through at the bottom of the frame. A clattering and squeaking sound preempts more motion, and the lines of light slowly expand into a glittering navy blue ocean, and eventually, a grey-blue sky. The doors pause, and we see the take in the vast, calm scene, and what appears to be an unreachable horizon. Suddenly, the clattering and squeaking resumes, and the doors slowly shut out the seascape and return to the dark garage.
Such fleeting moments are captured in Ozzola’s photographic stills. In Harmony (2014), for example, a window cut into a graffiti-covered concrete wall opens onto a view of a dusky desert sky. Viewers can gaze through this aperture and out to the landscape it reveals, knowing that the scene will not shift and the vision is fixed. This, together with the artist’s other stills, promises to transport viewers to austerely beautiful, lonely landscapes—a respite from the eye-popping rush and bustle of the humid island city just outside.
Visit Gazelli Art House at Art Central Hong Kong 2015, Booth B4, Hong Kong, Mar. 14–16.