Iron age is am exhibition that presents four contemporary artists focusing on a specific body of work of their career in which the main medium is metal.
The Iron Age, last period of prehistoric stage preceded by the Stone Age and the Bronze Age, brought enormous developments in early human societies and the foundations for those to come. The use of new material led to the production of new weapons and tools, the creation of the first alphabets brought the first literatures, the conception of new art forms, all happened at the time iron became an essential material for mankind. The gallery is looking how four contemporary artists namely Riccardo De Marchi, Brookhart Jonquil, Raffaele Rossi and Verónica Vázquez, include iron and its more contemporary form stainless steel, into their artworks. The aim is to establish a dialogue between these contemporary abstract works drawing on Iron Age developments. These international artists, from emerging to establish, which aesthetic researches join in abstraction or minimalism and the use of metal in their practices. This range of selected artworks is a great overview into the gallery esthetic line and the gallery wishes to share its vision to the public.
Riccardo De Marchi develops a relationship with space by drilling several precise holes on the surface and throughout his artworks. He intervenes on the material to create minimalist monochrome planes of different medium. De Marchi prefers to work on industrial materials such as stainless steel and Corten steel. De Marchi creates holes representing presence-absence which penetrate the material to enquire its meaning, traces left by the action of the artist where individual signs become letters of a universal language or alphabet De Marchi has an extremely polished and minimal use of the metal which surface he hammers and perforates. The final works seems to hold a message encoded in the visual language of the artist, reminiscing of the first alphabetical symbols and the first scriptures.
The delicate pressed and polished stings of Lescher bring to mind the iron tools of the Iron Age, while the flawless surfaces confront us to the industrial use of the material that has been taking place ever since.
The stainless steel structure in Jonquil’s work supports an imagined cosmos made out of precious meteorites and trivial broken glasses and chewed gums. The artist mixes the sacred and the profane through his use of material, ad pushed the viewer to consider its place in our universe.
Raffaele Rossi, an artist who recuperates the importance of Fresco from the traditional Venetian art and incorporates other materials such as lead and iron plate in his paintings. Rossi’s artworks bring an organic use of the metal, thus balancing with the harsh and industrial tone of the other artworks. He hammers and scratches the material before including it in his frescoes to create abstract landscapes where the eyes wander among a sea of colors and textures where primitive symbols emerge.
Veronica Vazquez is a Uruguayan sculptor who works with materials that carry memories from the past, such as discarded metals, nails, cardboard and paper. She reconstructs them to create compositions and sculptures that convey the fragility of the present. There is a poetic rhythmic in the assemblages of discarded metal pieces of Vazquez.
The careful selection and association of forms and tones confront us with abstract yet primal symbolic works, appealing to our longing for beauty and divine.