Galleria Alessandro Bagnai is pleased to announce the opening of CIAO, an exhibition of recent new works by Massimo Barzagli curated by Saretto Cincinelli.
The exhibition presents the artist’s work from the last three years, and consists of three large installations, four video projections and a text broadcast through an audio source.
The first installation, “il domatore di peluche”, consists of a polyptych made up of eight works painted on large laminated tarpaulins, oil-painted prints which – like the exhibition title – evoke a certain Italian neo-realist atmosphere. The second installation is a group of sculptures in impasto-painted gesso, crisscrossed by multicolored straps of the sort used to lift heavy objects, and hand and arm prints in blue, pink, yellow and green. The sculptural work appears as a sort of ruin, or rather a ruin filled with finds. Finally, the third installation is a large pile of colored bricks, one side of which reveals a sculptural bird amid branches projecting from the fallen-brick assemblage.
The audio piece is a text developed in 2014 and presented in the form of a sound installation at Rem Koolhaas’ Venice Biennial as part of the exhibition “Mondo Italia”. The text – part of Massimo Barzagli’s collaboration with Luisa Cortesi – materialized in the Arsenal exhibition space as a 3-hour-and-40-minute architectural sound structure played without interruption throughout the entire exposition period. The text also conjures up a neo-realist atmosphere, albeit sarcastically.
The four video projections are variations in 4 tones of the same film shot in Sardinia, showing a wave breaking over rocks, and – as Saretto Cincinelli has noted – contains a veiled reference to a Gustave Courbet painting, filtered through Warhol-style tonal variations.
CIAO is also an accumulation of prints of pressed flowers in natural-colored plaster slabs to which plastic flowers are tied with colored elastic bands...
The breaking of waves on rocks, the diffusion of sound, the sculptural installations in the form of piles or ruins and the floating stuffed animals cannot help but take on an allusive and metaphorical value.
Alberto Boatto concluded a superb 1994 essay on Massimo Barzagli with these words: the tossing of flowers onto these faces becomes a sort of farewell gesture.