mercoledì 20 gennaio 2021

108: HACIA LAS NUBES - solo show at Swinton Gallery - Madrid


OPENING: 29/01/2021 at Swinton Gallery - Madrid


1ª Exposición en solitario de 108 Nero en Swinton Gallery
29 de enero 2021 – 31 de marzo 2021

"[…]With rapid course, along the skies ye fail. With blowing winds your wat’ry frames I call, On mother Earth with fruitful show’rs to fall."

Orphic Hymn Excerpt.

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"To The Clouds" text by Michela D'Acquisto

"Some years ago, 108 stumbled by chance upon a book on Orphism - it was his first fortuitous meeting with a religion that, as he was going to find out shortly, holds remarkable affinities with his art, his beliefs, and his idea of how an artist should be.
In 2019, 108 had another close encounter with Orphism while working on an exhibition at Palermo's archeological museum, which hosts a famous polychrome mosaic depicting Orpheus playing the lyre among animals: inspired by the Orphic gold tablets found in graves with instructions for the deceased in the afterlife, the artist created a sound installation akin to a ritual, like most of his work.
Through his music, Orpheus charmed all living beings - and even inanimate objects - and, most importantly, was able to visit the underworld and return from it. When the Maenads ripped him to shreds, his head kept on singing, as an extraordinary testament of the everlasting power of art over anything else.
Also according to 108, art should be an all-encompassing force capable of reawakening and reconnecting the inner self to what the current over rational civilization solely focused on material achievements has forgotten over the centuries: the irrational, the unconscious, the mysterious - as in the ecstasy-inducing Dionysian mysteries, providing freedom from society's constraints and a return to primordial nature.
In the same way, the artist should act as a medium and regard his art as a portal leading beyond the visible to transcend reality.
As always, and perhaps now more than ever, 108 has worked entirely unencumbered by the control of rationality.
The abstract shapes that constitute To The Clouds - the title of an Orphic hymn that celebrates humanity's interdependence with Mother Earth - are almost meditative tools, mainly black, as with its incomparable symbolic and visual impact, is the colour that also formally expresses the marked duality of the artist's works: plenitude and, at the same time, emptiness.
108's entire comprehensive artistic practice is aimed at transcending the subordination of reality and at releasing the most instinctive part of its essence, at least on the level of the intangible. The arrangement itself of the works in the gallery perfectly summarizes the tension resulting from the attempt to reconcile rational and non-rational: the linearity of the installation is interrupted by a random accumulation of irregular shapes and primitive ceramics – in 108's own words, a “museum to the inexplicable” – that reflects the inexorable affirmation of irrationality over reason."