Antonis Donef Curated by Flaminio Gualdoni 26 May – 30 July 2016
Privateview Gallery via Goito 16 – Turin (Italy)
A new exhibition space, PRIVATEVIEW, is opening in Turin on 26 May. The 250-square-meter gallery is located in San Salvario, Turin’s lively multiethnic district that is a crossroads of cultures and the trendy heart and soul of the local nightlife. The founders, Silvia Borella and Mauro Piredda, are a young couple of art collectors who share a passion for modern and contemporary art which brought them around the world to expand their horizons. It was in London, where they have come in contact with numerous artists and gallerists, that they finally made up their mind and decided to open their own gallery in Turin.
PRIVATEVIEW sets out to introduce to Italy emerging artists who have made a name for themselves abroad, and to make available to Italian collectors the quality and beauty, the value and prestige that have piqued the interest of the international art market. The same energy will be channeled towards the promotion of emerging Italian artists by providing a solid context to showcase their work. The location of the gallery in the San Salvario district is testimony of the founders’ determination to reach out to a new audience, perhaps unfamiliar with art galleries, that could develop an interest by approaching art from a more accessible angle.
The gallery’s inaugural exhibition is a solo show of Antonis Donef curated by Flaminio Gualdoni. Donef is a Greek artist living and working in Athens and the exhibition presents his monumental works to the Italian public for the very first time.
Donef’s work and research are truly unique. His creative process can be roughly broken down in four phases: first, Donef the collector hunts down ancient volumes – mainly encyclopedias and inventories, some of them of great value - in Greek markets and bookshops; then, the artist literally and painfully rips out the pages of each book, often yellowed by the passing of time, and lays them side by side to make up his canvas. At that point he dips a pen into a special Indian ink and leaves his mark on the canvas: first, delicate traits that follow and underscore existing lines, then symbols that gain momentum as he builds imposing illustrations that expand across the whole surface and cover it
almost entirely. The fourth and last phase of Donef’s creative process consists in looking at the artwork from a distance and finally realizing that the written word has been deprived of its original meaning to become an artwork. In each work the viewer can read a different and personal meaning, where the signified cannot be separated from the signifier, in a clear reference to Saussure’s groundbreaking semiotic theories.
The curator Flaminio Gualdoni explains: “Through this very personal creative process Donef starts from a complex and critical approach that does away with the ordinary nature of what is defined as knowledge by human convention while reaffirming the power of a clarity of mind whereby the ability to see becomes an essential condition of thought. As Rimbaud perfectly sums up: ‘And sometimes I have seen what men have imagined they saw!’ Thus the artist embarks on an involutional path that takes him to the source of meaning, to a zero point that is not the elimination too often saluted by the neo- avantgardes, that is not an absence, but a point of origin.”
Today Donef marks a brand new beginning from that very “point of origin” to create a new reality and a new code, without erasing the past but building a future that rests on what once was.
26 May – 30 July 2016
Via Goito 16, Turin (Italy) www.privateviewgallery.com firstname.lastname@example.org
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