BRUNO CECI

italiano / english

 

UNTRIED ITINERARIES

In some of the first works which go back to the second half of the fifties, and I refer to Composizione (1957), Costruzione (1957-58), and to Archaios/rilievo (1959), we find an unexpected soundness of pictorial ideals, and that is indeed a rare thing in a young artist who in those years was taking his first steps.
As a proof of those persuasive results was the fact that the artist was operating a precise choice, a choice opposed  to intellectual vices or to mere cultural suggestions; this is revealed by the correspondence between the contents and the concrete forms of the art of painting.
In the first work, the weak and dark tracts which hurt and dramatize the solar spatiality of the background colour remind us of a spring primitivity, the basic and essential condition without which the pictorial event would again end in a vain grammatical definition. On the contrary, the work seems to be characterized by a strong vein of nihilism which corrodes the forms. So as to reduce them to a network of incongruous and labyrinthic joints; we perceive, within the limits of a well balanced spatiality, the feeling of remote suggestions, of ancient precognitive traces.
In this phase it is necessary to put in evidence not only the technique, (as for istance the innovative use of the enamel paint) nor the compositive balance, but the authentic disposition of the artist laid bare by means of an expressive process which has remained unchanged up to the most recent production. It was an excessive self-restraint to keep him aloof from the artistic contest; however this has never prevented him from making new projects, manipulating the matter, and from giving shape to his imagination, so that today the observer is offered the chance to study a widely unexplored artistic itinerary which has grown out of the silence of an austere atelier.
The sudden surprise effect that seizes us gives the idea that the linguistic experience of the artist, although shows debts towards precise artistic innovative currents, anyway it is very far from setting precious jewels into a rigid frame: the artist relies very much on the strength of his artistic instinct.
This analysis is corresponded in another work of his formative period, a work entitled Archaios/rilievo.
The role assigned to the matter, the value taken by the sign, the precarious idea of the form, the thickness of the surface itself, all these features communicate us the conception of an utterly informal culture of images.
If this is a characteristic relating in those years many young artists, on the other hand the aspirations of the informal culture tend to become dull within a shapeless reinforcement. However, in Pezzolesi’s approach there is from the beginning a particular soundness which gives birth to an original way; the matter does not show itself rough, that is a mixture of plaster and enamel, but it is very articulated in its espression.
Thus the support is not the place where uncontrolled emotions find their way, but is only a part of the surface; the picture hints at another shapeless reality where the artist does communicate the expressive power of matter itself.
In the clotted thickness of the dull “impasto”, which gives the idea of plaster roughness, modulations of grey, violet and black colour do predominate. Our thought seems to pursue ancient and fading memories but this impression lasts but a moment; in fact the work more than an allusion to time is a living materic event, abstract energy taking definition in a well structured rhythm.
In Costruzione (1957/58) a work realized on board with enamel paint and cementite, the critic discourse seems to gain in subtility although the surface appears largely loaded with an eterogeneous congeries of properly related panels, sometimes linked by means of subtle coloristic suggestions, but even more by a strong suggestion of a concept of continuity, which is not other than the rigorous formal structure where signs, colours, and forms are transferred.
The presence of some authoritative cultural influences might make us suspect about hidden zones where the image is still detached from the matter where only a very faint line is the visible border, that is the limits between the objective reality and the view the artist has of it. On the contrary, the pictorial surface moves toward the conquest of surface itself, to a new identification between picture and background, more than alluding to further secret meanings.
The formal research does not limit itself to a simplicistic definition of artistic contents, it is rather a rigorous structuralization of the “images-matter” into an open relation which does not preclude new suggestions.
This is the formal reason why Pezzolesi’s works of this period never exclude the dimension of existence, while the whole surface mantains a sense of “Drama” and tension testifying the doubts and the indecision of a man and artist, along with the deep contrasts of a whole age.
The invitation to the IX Quadriennale nazionale d’arte in Rome comcides with the presentation of the new projects the artist was elaborating in line with the research perspectives which dominated the national and international background of the Sixties.
Far from being void transformism, Pezzolesi’s attitude is that of linking in his works the ethical plane with the aestetic dimension; in the Sixties Lucio expresses in a series of graphic experiments a dragging energy in operative terms, which finds perfect exploration in a peremptory and innovative neo-objectical recovery.
In Caduta di una goccia d’acqua (The fall of a water drop) work on paper and china-ink, the artist from Fano makes use of the elementary and concrete meaning of the stroke; he seems to be detached from every existential allusion, and does openly operate in the direction of an inversion of the meaning towards its carrier. The sign, beyond the supposed relation tends to become far more articulated, so to become illegible.
Through this reductive unrethorical operation, Lucio breaks the continuity of the surface using the discontinuous flowing of the linear incidence, whose traduction in the coeval plastic-works could be the material protrusions. The several falls and the eterogeneous thinckness of the linear repetitions occupying the whole extension of the surface do also constitute an element of cohesion of the work, as well as provoking an infinite series of variations which hint at an open temporal scansion. The work takes form and vigour from the inner dialectic movement between the initial omogeneity of the blank space of the paper and the discontinuity given by the linear protrusions.
In Cromoplastici (1965), works realized with zinc-plates, wires and enamel, material and linear protrusions seem to deepen the former pictorial and graphic experiences in the well-made attempt of acknowledging to the work the possibility of a multi-dimensional extension.
In fact, the work-object, besides prefiguring an inner spatial warp given by the manipulations to which the plate is subjected, gives its forms to the surrounding space.
The acute appeal this objective experience makes to the external space or to the fruitor takes its form through the filter of a mental criterium totally alien to façade-operations; signs and matters, once they have lost their representatives faculty, are seen within the context of the idea of an “active space”, where the observer is no more marginal. If we find the alternative to a mediate relation between observer and work in the transgressive manipulation and the free combination of materic and graphic elements in Cromoplastici, however, in Tact n. 1 (a plastic box made of plated-wood and rubber) we find it in the immediate tactile function which conceals every distance between the space of the image and that of the observer, who is invited to a direct participation. This space of the action and of the matter is shown through a perceptive process (the aseptic and debunking yellow colour of the external surface has the function of depriving the object of every meaning) as well as through a manual one, that is, a little hole invites the fruitor of the artistic message to sound manually the inner part of the work, where there is a circular disposition of several partitions, each of them animated by eterogenous materials and scraps. The work and the space containing all this disposition becomes a concrete place of events where we can try sensorial and tactile possibilities. Here again the research refers to an open structure and enriches the “Alphabet of the matter”; this is an operative way which does not foresee the perceptive behavior of the fruitor, as the space is not felt as a well definite entity anymore is rather felt as a continuous processual movement where the projectual moment, but does perfectly cohabit with the fabulative capacity.
Therefore the visive communication connot be reduce to a pure contemplative act bound to a privileged conception of art, as the former is to become a liberating experience devoted to the union of man with the world, it cries for a total involvement.
From this meeting with the reality and its most animous and personal materials which are loaded with new expressive values, as the task is the identification between art and life, Pezzolesi comes to the most recent studies, where the aim is the overcoming of every generic pictorial and plastic boundary.
Wood, iron, glass, aluminium, plastics, pins, cartoon, nails, enamels, plaster, these are all the objectual fragments present in the heart of the works; they are the more expressive the more in them is evident the feeling of provisionality. The continual skipping of the themes as for instance is Contaminatio (1988), Punto Condizionato (1989), Finestra (1992), Linea Rosa (1992), Scimmia 1 (1993), besides having a provocative feature, they deeply reflect the problematical nature of research that external and internal necessity has to be continually renewed. And if the explorative tension and an humble attitude counterbalances a gesture implied in its temporal dimension, in line with a conception of an art strictly connected with the possibilities of its operative concreteness. The ethic transparency is the secret key that allows the artist from the Marches to protect his own research from whatever “Specialization”, giving the suggestion of the past and, of the present time a poetic, artisanal and in short, a more vivid character.

 Urbino, July 1994

Bruno Ceci

(B. CECI – “Untried itineraries” Critical introduction to the catalogue of the personal exhibition ‘Anthological show 1957 – 1993”, Sala Laurana, Palazzo Ducale, Pesaro, 17/09-04/10/1994).