5 May – 29 July 2006
Sprovieri is pleased to present the second show in London of paintings by Maurizio Cannavacciuolo.
In Maurizio Cannavacciuolo’s works the surface of the canvas is densely covered with intricate decorative motifs from the European and Middle-Eastern tradition, to compose a puzzle in which the figure fluctuates within a surreal, dreamlike ambience. The flat colour, uniformly applied in order to precisely fill the contours defined by each element on the canvas, helps to lend a marked bi-dimensionality to the image. The successive planes of the painting dilate under the viewer’s eye into an illusory space in which cryptographic messages can be hidden. In the pencil drawings on canvas the absence of colour renders the reading of the image even more difficult, as does the artist’s complicated way of using strokes so dense and thick - at times obsessively repetitive - that the various elements seem to sink into an indistinguishable flow.
Maurizio Cannavacciuolo defines his own work as “machines à penser”, or rather places in which an entire universe is ready to reveal itself to the viewer who accepts the challenges proposed, who ventures towards a result that is not immediate, in the attempts to extricate the various elements present on the canvas. Taking this time and this journey is necessary to fully understand the ironic and often sardonic traits present in Cannavacciuolo’s work, traits which distinguish the artist as one not willing to renounce his role as a critical observer of reality - and who paints that reality with an acute sense of ridicule and absurdity.