December 17, 2010

Matteo Basile - ThisHumanity Exhibition at Galleria Pack, Milan, Italy before the SAM, Singapore

Matteo Basilé, ThisHumanity 
Galleria Pack, Milan, Italy 
Through January 29, 2011 

Courtesy Galleria Pack, Milano, Italy

Galleria Pack in Milan is hosting an exhibition by MATTEO BASILE entitled THISHUMANITY, inspired by one of the foremost masterpieces of late Gothic Florentine artwork, The Battle of San Romano by PAOLO UCCELLO (1397-1475).

The exhibition includes 10 large-scale photographs by the Roman artist inspired by the famous triptych Paolo Uccello was commissioned to paint in 1438 by the Barolini Salimbeni family in order to commemorate the Florentine victory over troops from Siena allied with Milan that took place on April 1, 1432.

In the Florentine painter’s artwork everything appears frozen in place, ready for the final act. It was precisely this “image capture,” subdivided into three different moments, that inspired Matteo Basilé to create the subsequent frame, in other words the physical clash between its peoples and imaginary armies. In The Battle of San Romano, Paolo Uccello experimented for the first time ever with techniques in perspective that were revolutionary for his day, creating multiple visions within the same scene. The artwork THISHUMANITY is put together following the same rules of perspective employed by the fifteenth-century painter, this time created using postproduction digital photography techniques.

Faithful to his expressive intent, Basilé is creating the sets within which this great battle will be set directly in South East Asia. The artist has lived and worked there for some time now, and has been able to involve a multitude of identities and female characters ready for the clash.

Women are the protagonists of Basilé’s work – their fight for their own identities and independence – connecting two artworks divided by centuries; a female universe ready to take to the field for a world dominated by men. It is a sort of The Rape of the Sabine Women in reverse, in which rather than being raped, the protagonists fight to reveal and protect their own identities. It is a purifying battle in which women of different races and with different pasts face their enemies down in a fight to the last breath in order to escape a destiny that makes them increasingly resemble the opposite sex.

Following the show in Milan, Thishumanity will be put on display in SAM, the SINGAPORE ART MUSEUM.

Courtesy Galleria Pack, Milano, Italy


Matteo Basilé (Rome, 1974) debuted in 1997, when he was just 23 years old, with a solo show at the Il Ponte Contemporanea gallery in Rome. His artworks have been exhibited in some of the most important art venues in Italy and abroad. He won the New York prize in 2002. In 2007, Basilé had his first solo show in an Italian art institution: the MART in Rovereto. In 2009, he was among the artists selected for the Italian Pavilion at the 53rd edition of the Venice Biennale.

Matteo Basilé is considered one of the foremost protagonists of European digital art. For the past decade he has been blending digital culture with classical iconography, re-inventing the portrait. The artist uses digital photography in order to develop and expand his personal code for contemporary painting, utilizing the computer as linguistic prosthesis in order to expand each vision and lend depth to the splendid surfaces of his artworks. Basilé’s world is an iconographic universe extending between technological mannerism and artistic surrealism. In his case, these two historic art movements mark a novel use of citation that tends towards synthesis and the affirmation of art as a meta-language.

Captured within the digital frame, his subjects become timeless icons. Marks traced upon their skins recount the geography of intimate memories. It is the face understood as voyage, memory as the warehouse for that which Basilé defines as the “archive of the soul.” His collection of faces and bodies tells the tale of a humanity dear to the artist. Women, children, men and the elderly are catapulted into the artist’s timeless imagination with the goal of passing on a three-dimensional verb capable of uniting painting with cinema, writing with material, photography with sound, and scenic space with an audience.

Basilé tests, manipulates and synthesizes his subjects’ DNA, transforming them into martyrs and saints within a world parallel to our own. Startling beauty and marvelous ugliness are blended together within the digital era. Reality and fiction travel side-by-side, ultimately blossoming into a new collective imagination.

CATALOGUE: THISHUMANITY is accompanied by a catalogue published by Damiani Editore (Bologna). The catalogue includes all the artworks from the exhibition, backstage images from the set in Bali, and several texts about the project and Matteo Basilé’s opus.

Foro Buonaparte 60

11-23-10 / 01-29-11

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Il semble que vous soyez un expert dans ce domaine, vos remarques sont tres interessantes, merci.

- Daniel

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