Fifteen new works form the basis of the exhibition of Flavio Favelli at Ca’ Rezzonico.
Venice has always been a stage in my life; as a child I used to go there because, as my mother said, “you have to know Italy”. It is difficult to exhibit in such distinctive places: one always seeks out a dialogue, and there is the hope that the artist of today, who by his nature is considered “lightweight” compared to the art of the past, pays homage to our Art & History seen as a kind of ideal to which to aspire”.
The wooden platforms that for months have been trampled on by passers-by who crossed the Accademia bridge, covered for a restoration that was completed at the end of last year, bearing the signs of trampling feet and work paints. A red star recalling an advertisement, light-boxes with logos and names (Generali, Lacoste, Coca-Cola) and the brands erased by paint, the reinterpretation of an old label of the famous Venetian aperitif Select that becomes a banner. Iron lattices in the form of a trellis, mimetic motifs of warships, scratched mirrors, reconstructed furniture and silver-plated trays. The common denominator of these works is the overlapping of images, textures and materials. The form is the assembly, the combination of forms and objects and meanings, the composition, the collage and finally the painting. The central theme is that of the altered and sophisticated sign-text-logo for a different image that shifts and adulterates the original meaning and leads to a new formal and conceptual complexity.
The artist also makes use of buildings, pylons, furniture and tin panels, signs, “abstract” statues and light-boxes. As the artist notes, in the Museo del Settecento Veneziano “there are no walls to pierce”: the intervention is therefore site-specific in the most practical sense, with three-dimensional works.
Flavio Favelli does not only look at the history of art. In his work we may also find the history of costume, everyday objects, tools of communication, and of advertising “which in Italy has influenced our history more than we think”, and there is the biography of the artist himself, for those materials and those imaginary have settled in his personal story too.
Text: Gabriella Belli
Photo: Dario Lasagni