Thursday, December 8, 2016


Gianni Politi was born in Rome in 1986, and this exhibition is his first solo show at Galleria Locarn O'Neill.
The show includes three types of work: abstract paintings made using scraps of canvas with acrylic, oil and household paint; small portraits on canvas; and bronze stretchers of varying sizes realised with multicoloured patinas, marble and painted wood inserts.
The exhibition exposes the process that the artist uses to move from a body of work to the next, employing the materials that were discarded from previous works to invent and bring to the dignity of new work what was temporarily left behind in the process of selection and creation. Everything that happens in the studio matters for Politi. His work enters precisely on the struggle of the artist in his tension to move toward the finished work and the invention of new forms of expression; his art gives body to this process.
It does so while being deeply indebted to Italian tradition: abstract forms become references to modern Italian art, freely interpreted and transfigured. Politi's methods are unconventional and make use of sparse resources: he recycles materials, including industrial and commercial canvas;  he creates abstract collage constructions made from torn cloth, roughly glued together and stretched across the canvas in a way that recalls Fontana slashes made with a sharp knife.
Politi's portraits explore tradition through the theme of memory and the faint trace of a father's face and a parallel exercise of painting using different techniques, colours, degrees of fidelity or abstraction.
The bronze are his most recent work: they are cast of stretchers used for canvas, treated with elaborate patinas of different colours and completed with marble and wood inserts.
Painting, destruction, recreation are essential in the vocabulary of Gianni Politi's artwork, they are the tools Politi employs to bring on the canvas and into world the trace of the sentiment that permeates the studio during his long hours of labour.

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