Nico Vascellari

22 Sep - 29 Oct 2011

It is with pleasure that Monitor presents the latest project by Nico Vascellari, at his second solo show in our Palazzo Sforza Cesarini premises.
Bus de la Lum (which in the evocative and mysterious Veneto dialect of northeast Italy means literally “hole of light”) is the name of a large natural cavity right in the heart of the forest of the Cansiglio plateau, not far from the artist’s studio and a place he has already used for his performances and artistic research. Shrouded in legend, in the past it was believed to emanate arcane powers associated with magic rituals – oblivion and destruction for those men or animals unfortunate enough to venture there; moonless nights haunted by witches, will-o’-the-wisps, miasma, moss and rocks. During World War Two Bus de la Lum acquired a somewhat less mythical fame as a foiba doline where hundreds of unidentified individuals, sometimes still alive, were literally thrown in with their hands tied behind their back. Perhaps also on account of this latest chapter in its history anyone brave enough to venture here finds it hard to distinguish between imagination and reality, between the serene natural surroundings and the darker side of this place.
Vascellari’s ties with the places he grew up have always been one of the cardinal elements of his artistic research. His atavistic sense of belonging to his roots is almost inseparable from the emotional charge that pervades his work. Over the years he has developed it with new and increasing vigour in an attempt to build up a sensorial communication channel with Nature and capture its poetics, intrinsic strength and dramatic power.
In this sense the Bus de la Lum cycle of works completed for Monitor has been aptly described by Filipa Ramos (cura issue 09 fall 2011) as the artist’s reaction to the state of wonder and subordination on contemplating Nature’s apparent chaotic lawlessness, as it displays its invincible strength and grandeur to a point that the powerless spectator can do nothing but gaze at what is before him.
Crossing the boundary between that which fascinates and terrifies us can only lead to the discovery of a sublime state of being in which emotions are superimposed and mingled. In this light Vascellari’s large-scale bronze sculptures can be read as the result – and residue – of a fall (or flight) into the very bowels of the Earth, as the sounds from this interior space echo throughout the gallery through a complex audio installation. The final and inevitable pause in this descent (at its ending) is conveyed by the liquid transparencies of Vascellari’s works on paper, arranged in almost para-tactical cadence on the walls of the gallery spaces and reminiscent of some kind of mineral sediment.

Nico Vascellari, Born in Vittorio Veneto (TV) in 1976.
Nico Vascellari is considered one of the most important Italian artists of his generation. He has exhibited his works in numerous solo shows both in Italy and abroad, including Bugada & Cargnel, Paris (2011); Fondazione Remotti, Camogli (2011); Macro, Rome (2010); Marina Abramovic Institute, San Francisco (2010); Museion, Bolzano (2010); Galleria Monitor, Rome (2009); Lambretto Art Project, Milan (2009); MAN, Nuoro (2007); Skuc, Ljubljana (2006) Viafarini, Milan (2006); Spazio Lima, Milan (2005). Among his group shows are VW, Berlin (2011); Confort Moderne, Poitiers (2011); MAK, Vienna (2011); Hangar Bicocca, Milan (2011); Pinchuk Art Centre, Kiev (2010); Magasin, Grenoble (2010); EACC, Castellò (2010); 12th Architecture Biennale, Venice (2010); Wysing Art Centre, Cambridgeshire (2010); Mart, Rovereto (2010); Gamec, Bergamo (2010); Fondazione Pomodoro, Milan (2010); Julia Stoschek Foundation, Dusseldorf (2009); Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester (2009); Kunsthaus, Graz (2009); Manifesta7, Rovereto (2008); Mambo, Bologna (2008); 15th Rome Quadriennale, Rome (2008); GC AC, Monfalcone (2008); Maxxi, Rome (2007); 52nd Venice Art Biennale, Venice (2007); Galleria Civica di Trento, Trento (2005). Among Vascellari’s prizes and awards there are Premio Acacia (2010); Rome Prize (2008); Premio della Giovane Arte Italiana (2007); New York Prize (2006); International Performance Prize (2005). In 2010 Vascellari was among the finalists for the Future Generation Art Prize (Pinchuk Art Centre, Kiev), the 5x5 Prize (EACC, Castellò) and the CAS Prize (London).

Tags: Marina Abramović, Nico Vascellari