Giorgio Persano

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Michele Zaza

21 Mar - 08 Jun 2013

Presenza assenza, 1973
3 fotografie b/n
50 x 29 cm cad.
MICHELE ZAZA
il risveglio del paesaggio
curated by Elena Re
21 March - 8 June 2013

Abstract thought at last returns to its prop of flesh...
The writer has given up telling “stories” and creates his universe. (A. Camus)

The Galleria Giorgio Persano presents the solo exhibition Il risveglio del paesaggio (The reawakening of landscape) by Michele Zaza, curated by Elena Re.

Through a site-specific video installation, combined with a wide selection of photographic works ranging from the early 1970s to the most recent images, the exhibition offers a deep insight into the work of Michele Zaza. The idea underlying the exhibition is to stress not only the historic importance, but also and above all the topicality of this artist, and so gain a sense of the creative force in the overall development of his work. Adopting this line, a dialogue between different moments is created, from which emerge some essential questions, to the point that the exhibition provides the opportunity to highlight the thinking and poetic animating all of his œuvre.

The title of the video installation filling the entire space of the Gallery gives the title for the overall exhibition: THE REAWAKENING OF LANDSCAPE. Abstract thought at last returns to its prop of flesh... The writer has given up telling “stories” and creates his universe (A. Camus). The quotation immediately reveals the conceptual and existential commitment present in Zaza’s work. The need is to express a synthesis, a unity between art and life, between abstraction and experience, between matter and spirit, in order to create a possible universe. The bond between male and female – a feature that has always been present in the artist’s work – is here called into question in a total dimension. Two faces, a sculptural form, the movement of the hands, the rhythm resulting from a heartbeat and a ultramarine blue horizon, in which symbolic presences draw a cosmic, infinite landscape, renewed by vital energy.

In parallel with this large installation, some other spaces house what is truly a voyage within Zaza’s photographic œuvre. Some of the most representative historic works are presented here. Those of the 1970s, in which his father, mother, the bond with the earth and the origins, are the fulcrum for a totally radical inner exploration, as in Mimesi (Mimesis, 1975) or Neo terrestre (Neo-terrestrial, 1979). And others of the 1980s and 1990s, in which the presence of the artist’s wife introduces an extremely intense female element, albeit ethereal and dreamlike, encouraging more research into true beauty in its subtle, spiritual aspect, as in Cielo abitato (Inhabited sky, 1985). And on to the 2000s and the more recent works, in which the relationship with his daughter enriches and emphasises the performance and theatre dimension in Zaza’s œuvre, in such works as Ritratto magico (Magical portrait, 2005) and Paesaggio magico (Magical landscape, 2009). The symbology is illuminated with new tones and presences, and the faces become increasingly iconic, figures transcending a specific identity to become truly part of a possible universe.