Arcangelo - A sud del mondo


Inaugurazione Giovedi 26 Maggio 2016 - Dal 27/572016 al 09/09/2016

A cura di Ivan Quaroni


La galleria Progettoarte elm di Milano prosegue la sua indagine sulla pittura degli artisti emersi tra gli anni Settanta e Ottanta con una mostra personale, curata da Ivan Quaroni, dedicata ad Arcangelo dal titolo A sud del mondo. La mostra raccoglie un nucleo di opere che attraversa trasversalmente tutta la produzione dell’artista dagli anni Ottanta a oggi. Sono circa 15 i lavori, tra tele, sculture e carte intelaiate, appartenenti a diversi periodi, dall’inziale ciclo Terra mia, che ha segnato gli esordi dell’artista in Italia e soprattutto in Germania, ai cicli pittorici della maturità, come i Pianeti, i Dogon e i Misteri, fino alle serie realizzate nell’ultimo decennio, dai Sanniti alle più recenti opere dedicate agli Irpini. La mostra si svolge come un sintetico percorso a tappe che attraversa la compatta e coerente visone artistica di Arcangelo, maturata in controtendenza rispetto al clima culturale postmodernista inaugurato dalle ricerche della Transavanguardia, rivolte al recupero del genius loci. Fin dal primo ciclo di opere, realizzato con materiali poveri e organici, come terre, carboni e pigmenti puri, appare chiaro che la direzione della sua indagine è più vicina allo spirito delle ricerche poveriste. Terra mia è una serie che occupa l’artista per diversi anni e che pone le fondamenta del suo modus operandi, attraverso l’elaborazione di una pittura gestuale, scarnificata che trasforma il paesaggio in visione astratta eppure sanguigna e carnale della natura. L’adesione sensuale, materica alle radici culturali del territorio nel quale è cresciuto, il Sannio, porta l’artista alla costruzione di un originale immaginario radicale, dove si fondono memorie ataviche dei popoli italici, ricordi delle processioni penitenziali, suggestioni e profumi del mediterraneo e perfino dell’Africa Nera. Le serie dei Pianeti e dei Dogon testimoniano, infatti, un allargamento degli influssi iconografici dell’artista, interessato alle cosmologie delle civiltà tribali del Delta del Niger (Dogon e Lobì). Si tratta, come scriveva negli anni Novanta il critico tedesco Andrea Jahn, di “un segno del suo interesse verso fenomeni multiculturali e internazionali, oltre che della sua diffidenza nell’atteggiamento fondamentalmente positivistico occidentale”. Religione, magia, misticismo, spiritualità, folclore permeano tutta l’opera di Arcangelo, anche se il suo linguaggio si muove piuttosto in un territorio liminare tra l’astrazione segnica e gestuale e la figura, intuibile solo come indicazione sintetica e accenno velato. Non a caso le forme di cose, oggetti, luoghi appaiono nelle sue tele e nelle sue sculture, come ombre spettrali, fantasmi magmatici, apparizioni affioranti dall’inconscio individuale e collettivo. A sud del Mondo è un titolo che ben rappresenta l’indagine dell’artista, contraddistinta da un nomadismo culturale che lo conduce a individuare la comune radice mitopoietica dei popoli italici e extraeuropei. Per tale motivo, passando in rassegna i diversi cicli in successione, dai Dogon ai Sanniti agli Irpini, si può individuare la ricorrenza di certe forme archetipiche, che assumono di volta in volta un diverso significato. Le cosmogonie sacre dei Pianeti, i simboli penitenziali e cruciformi dei Misteri, le allusioni falliche delle Montagne Sante, le case, i granai e i termitai dei Dogon sono simulacri che si succedono senza soluzione di continuità, riaffiorando di tanto in tanto nei diversi cicli per ribadire la comune origine di tutte le storie e di tutte le esperienze. Quella di Arcangelo è una visione più poetica che antropologica, basata sull’osservazione intuitiva e sulla capacità di proiettare l’anelito spirituale dei popoli a lui cari nella dimensione immaginifica dell’arte. Insieme alle opere storiche, molte delle quali sono esposte per la prima volta, saranno presentati anche alcuni lavori di piccole dimensioni dell’ultimo ciclo degli Irpini, dominato da colori di terre rosse, blu vibranti e neri profondissimi che ricapitolano e, insieme, rinnovano il senso magico e auratico della sua pittura, alla perenne ricerca dell’energia sorgiva e primaria dell’immaginazione mitica.


ARCANGELO. A SUD DEL MONDO (TO THE SOUTH OF THE WORLD) - by Ivan Quaroni

Progettoarte elm gallery in Milan continues its investigation into the painting of artists emerged between the Seventies and Eighties with a personal exhibition curated by Ivan Quaroni and dedicated to Arcangelo, named "A sud del Mondo " (To the South of the world). The exhibition brings together a group of works that cuts across the whole production of the artist from the 80's to the present. There are about 15 works, between paintings, sculptures and trestle papers of different cycles, from “Terra Mia”, which marked the artist Italian and German debut, the more mature series as the Planets, the Dogon and the Mysteries, to the series realized in the last decade, such as the Sanniti and the Irpinia. The exhibition is envisioned as synthetic route in stages running through the compact and coherent artistic vision of Arcangelo, matured in contrast to the cultural climate postmodern “Transavantgarde”, aiming the recovery of the genius loci. Since the first cycle of works, made with poor and organic materials such as soil, coals and pure pigments, it is clear that he is going towards of Arte Povera techniques. Terra Mia is a series the artist works on for several years and in which lays the basis of his modus operandi, by changing the vision of he landscape in a more passionate and carnal way. The sensuality and he physicality of the area in which he grew up, the Sannio, leads the artist to build a radical original imagery, where ancestral memories of the Italic population melt with memories of processions and with the Mediterranean splendours and scents stretching to the deep Africa. The series “Pianeti” and “Dogon” demonstrate the broadening of the iconographic influences, such as the tribal civilizations of the outlet of the Niger outlet (Dogon and Lobi). It is, as the German critic Andrea Jahn wrote in the 90's, "a sign of his interest in multicultural and international events, as well as his mistrust in the western positive attitude". Religion, magic, mysticism, spirituality, folklore are all over Arcangelo work even if his interpretation is more of abstract signs and gestures as brief allusion. In fact the forms of things, objects and places appear in his paintings and sculptures as ghostly shadows or even appearances of individual and collective unconsciousness. “To the south of the World” ( A sud del Mondo) is a title that well represents the artist's search, signed by a cultural nomadism that leads him to the root of the Italic and non-European population. Therefore crossing the different cycles of work such as the Dogon the Sanniti and Irpinia, the occurrence of certain archetypal forms is constant but at the same time always changing their meaning. The sacred cosmogonies of “Pianeti”, the penitential and cross symbolism in "Misteri", the phallic reference in "Montagne Sacre", the houses and the silos of “Dogon” are appearances present from time to time in different series to underline the same origins of all the stories and all the experiences. Arcangelo vision is more poetic than anthropological, based on the intuitive observation and on the ability to interpret the spirituality of populations dear to him in the imaginative dimension of art. Together with the historical works, many of which are exhibited for the first time, will also be presented some small works of his last series "Irpinia" dominated by earthy reds, vibrant blue and very deep blacks that sum up the magical sense of his painting, always searching the primary energy of mythical imaginative.

Biography

Arcangelo was born in Avellino in 1956. In 1976 he enrolles at the Academy of Fine Arts of Roma, where he graduates in 1980. In 1981 moves to Milan. In the 80's he starts his fisrt cycles of works called “Terra mia”, with which he partecipates at the "Perspective" collection for the Art Basel in Basel. After that he exhibits his works at the Tanit gallery of Munic, at the Buchmann gallery of Basel and at the exhibition "Nuovi Argomenti" at PAC in Milan. He also displays his works at the Janine Mautsch gallery in Cologne, at the Harald Behm in Hamburg and at the Klaus Lupke in Frankfurt. He starts working on “Montagne Sante” sculptures. other shows follow such as "Villa Waldberta”, Galerie Tanit in Munic, a the Engström gallery in Stockolm, at the Studio Guenzani in Milan and partecipates at the "XI Quadriennale di Roma", "Prospect '86" at the Kunstverein und Shirn Kunsthalle in Frankfurt, "Dopo il concettuale" at the Museo Provinciale d'Arte of Trento and at the Galerie Pierre Huber, in Ginevre. In 1987 exhibits at the P.A.C. in Milan, at the Museum der Stadt in Esslingen, at the Galerie Maeght-Lelong in Paris e at the Edward Totah Gallery in London, city where he opens his londonese atelier. Towards the end of the 80's he makes the “Altari” sculptures and between 1989 and 1990 he sterts his painting serie called "Pianeti”. After hi trip to Africa in 1990, he works on “Lobi-Dogon” displayed at the Kunstverein in Bonn nel 1991. In 1992 launch his personal serie at the Museum of Modern Art in Toulouse, as Réfectoir des Jacobins. In 1993 he is at the Contemporary ARt Centre La Ferme du Buisson in Marne-La-Vallée, at the Contemporary Art Gallery in St. Priest, at the Kodama Gallery in Osaka, Japan. In 1994 he exhibits his collection “Stanze” at the Galler Otto in Bologna and then he is back at the Tanit in Munic just efore the Alice Pauli in Lousanne. Between 1993 and 1994 he is in Japan, at the Fukuyama Museum of Art and in France at the new Modern and Contemporary Art Museum of Toulouse Les Abattoirs. Between 1995 and 1996 he sets two editions of “Leonkart” at the C.S.O.A. Leonkavallo in Milano, inviting to share the exhibition artists such as Ricardo Brey, Pierpaolo Calzolari, Michele Frere, George Lappas, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Jaume Plensa. In 1996, at the Gallery Di Meo in Paris and at the Galleria Gentili in Florence he presents his wax works called “Le Navi”, then at the Galleria Continua in San Giminiano. During summer he works on the serie of paintings called “Misteri”. Between the 1996 and the 1998 he is back at the Tanit Gallery in Munic, at the Otto Gallery in Bologna, at the Janine Mautsch i Coln, at the Bernard Cats Gallery in Bruxelles and at the Civica Raccolta del Disegno in Salò , he also partecipate at the show "Ultime Generazioni", XII Quadriennale Nazionale d’Arte in Rome. During the same year he starts the small erotic collection called “Verso Oriente” and later exhibits his terracotta "Anfore” at the prestigious Caffè Florian in Venice. In 2000 lauches “Tappeti Persiani, sarcofago, anfore”, at the Galleria Lorenzelli Arte in Milan. In summer 2001 he produces “Feticci” and “Sanniti”, makes the “Orti”, ceramic sculpture done in the Bottega Gatti di Faenza, and dispays his works “Trofei di caccia” at the Tanit Gallery in Munic. In 2003 he publishes his first monography “Arcangelo” (Edizioni Quattroemme, Perugia) and later designs a serie of "Monotipi", shownin Italy and Germany. In 2004 he is at the Lorenzelli Arte in Milan with "Lunga notte di stelle Sannite" and produces the project "Terra dei Sanniti" at the Fondazione Il Volume in Rome. In the same period the prints a volume with 14 poems by Alda Merini (Edizioni Lo Sciamano). In 2005 he produces “Le mie case” and in 2006 he works on a serie called “I Vedenti”, displayed at the Kaj Forsblom Gallery in Helsinki. He participate at the show "Per esempio, Arte contemporanea italiana dalla Collezione Unicredit" at the MART in Rovereto and publishes the second volume of the monography “Arcangelo - opere dal 1983/2007” (Damiani Editore, Bologna). His interest for the deep Africa is in the “Kenia-Masai” of 2007. In 2009 he launches a personal collection at the Marco Rossi/Artecontemporanea in Verona and in Pietrasanta. The tribal paper works called “Segoú” of 2009, are displayed at the Fondazione Il Volume in Roma in 2010, at Lorenzelli Arte in Milano and at the Otto Gallery in Bologna. In 2011 he is at the Chiesa dell’Immacolata at Castello Aragonese in Ischia. In January 2012 he produces "Beirut" later displayed at the L’Espace Kettaneh-Kunigk (Tanit) in Beirut, Lebanon. In 2012 he works on a serie called "Ex voto", followed by "Kamasutra" and in summer 2014 works on “Irpini”, ancient population next to the Sanniti. In October 2012 he is at the Otto Gallery in Bologna and he starts working on the pottery pieces called "Case degli Irpini", based at the laboratory Le Officine Saffi in Milano home of the show of the same work in 2015. In 2014 he wins the prize to his career 56° Premio Internazionale Bugatti-Segantini and the book “Arcangelo 1988 – 2014” gets published by Giovanni Iovane, edited by Bice Bugatti Club. Between 2015 and 2016 he has two shows at the Francesco Clivio Gallery in Milan, PoliArt, Rovereto and at Marco Rossi Gallery Artecontemporanea in Pietrasanta. He is also partecipates at the "Passaggi" with Fondazione Volume! at the MAMC, Contemporary Art Museum in Saint Etienne in France and afterwards at the Il Frantoio in Capalbio. Many reviewers worte about him, such as Luca Massimo Barbero, Helmut Friedel, Maria Luisa Frisa, Walter Guadagnini, Flaminio Gualdoni, Giovanni Iovine, Andrea Jahn, Petra Joos, Gian Ruggero Manzoni, Maurizio Medaglia, Marco Meneguzzo, Marilena Pasquali, Jerome Picon, Annelie Pohlen, Ivan Quaroni, Davide Sarchioni, Herbert Schneidler, Alessandro Trabucco, Giacomo Zaza, Leonardo Conti.

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