Filippo Romeo

  • Paolo Gonzato

    Inside an eighteenth-century palazzo, two opulently decorated rooms boast frescoed ceilings, marble fireplaces, and an arch decorated with gilded stucco. Such spaces are extremely beautiful but fraught with traps when, as in this case, they become the setting for an exhibition of contemporary art. The architecture can overpower the works in the show; one might find oneself longing for the more humdrum but less distracting white boxes of most contemporary galleries. Paolo Gonzato met this challenge head-on and created an installation, L’Isola delle Rose (The Island of Roses; all works 2012), that

  • picks November 14, 2011

    Luigi Presicce

    Oneiric, reminiscent of Renaissance paintings, and seemingly embedded with references to the darkest chapters of Italy’s history (such as the killing of Mussolini in Mezzegra, Italy), Luigi Presicce’s new photos and videos in his solo show “In forma di autoscopia” (In the form of autoscopy) are haunting. An ad hoc work created for the occasion, Il grande architetto (The Great Architect), 2011, is presented as a video installation. Inspired by the killing of Hiram Abiff––a key allegorical figure in Masonic ritual and the architect of the temple of Solomon––the four untitled and looped video

  • Candida Höfer

    Exhibition spaces in museums and private collections were the subjects of the photographs in this recent show—but always without artworks, having been photographed immediately before the installation or afterward, when the works had already been taken down. “Candida Höfer/Kuehn Malvezzi,” as the show was titled, established a relationship between the analytical eye of the Cologne photographer and the equally rigorous practice of the Berlin-based architectural firm. In Höfer’s photographs, space is an absolute protagonist, its dimensions analyzed in each shot, defined within the geometric

  • Daniel Knorr

    A metal tube, similar to the aluminum pipes used for air-conditioning, was positioned vertically in a corner of the gallery. It had the appearance of a cold, conceptual sculpture, curved at the top like a periscope, the open end covered with a screen. This was the sole object in the gallery space during Berlin-based, Romanian-born artist Daniel Knorr’s exhibition “Urlo” (Scream). Visitors moved around it, examining the sculpture and inquiring as to its meaning. But it was only when the mysterious metal object started to move that they began to comprehend its function. Urlo, 2010, is a homemade

  • Rosa Barba

    A movie projector, a 16-mm film, and an automatic mechanism hidden inside a pedestal: These are the elements used by Rosa Barba, an Italian-born artist who lives in Berlin, for Machine Vision Seekers, 2004, one of the five powerful installations in her solo exhibition “Stating the Real Sublime.” The projector, positioned on a motor-activated support, oscillates in jerking movements. It points a beam of light at the wall, projecting a line of words onto a portion of the surface; a moment later, it turns rapidly and freezes again, making the projected words run from one wall to another. The machine

  • Giulia Piscitelli

    A protocol, in Italy, is a register in which documents and data of every type are transcribed, usually related to a subject or company under review. It serves to identify and describe a person or a thing—characteristic elements, peculiarities, and relevant factors. It is a sort of cataloguing that, if conducted correctly, can take on an appearance of certainty. The same cannot be said of the exhibition “Protocollo” (Protocol), compiled by Giulia Piscitelli. Here, data are catalogued and exhibited in the gallery—suggesting autobiographical references that are nevertheless difficult to trace back

  • “The Yan Pei-Ming Show”

    A solo exhibition that involved other artists, “The Yan Pei-Ming Show” was the work of several hands, featuring contributions by Piotr Uklanski and Huang Yong Ping under the direction of Chinese painter Yan Pei-Ming. It was like a TV show with guests in the studio and a host overseeing the various phases of the program. One entered the first space of the gallery by passing through a small opening, as if coming in from behind the scenes. This sense that one was walking onstage must have been a deliberate effect, since Yan chose to place the rear facade of a small temporary structure precisely

  • Tomás Saraceno

    Something like a gigantic bubble was suspended in the courtyard of the historic Palazzo Ducale. This was the installation that lent its title to Argentina-born, Germany-based artist Tomás Saraceno’s second solo show at the Genoese gallery located inside the fifteenth-century building. Hung from ropes attached to the colonnaded structure, Biosphere MW32, Air-Port-City, 2007, was made of thirty-two PVC pillows, inflated by a compressor and forming an enormous transparent sphere that could be inhabited. With its hollow interior, which one could enter during the opening reception only, it is a

  • picks November 05, 2007

    “The Yan Pei-Ming Show”

    “The Yan Pei-Ming Show” is a work by many hands, with contributions from Piotr Uklanski and Huang Yong Ping, under the direction of Chinese artist Yan Pei-Ming. Walking into the gallery, one has the feeling of coming in the back door, since the rear facade of a small, meticulously constructed stall filled with Eastern wares—Huang’s Marché de Punya, 2007—has been placed at the entrance. A short distance away stand two lifelike sculptures, also by Huang—a gigantic elephant carcass and a dog. Something about the animals and the Eastern emporium is at once unreal and absolutely credible. For example,

  • picks October 26, 2007

    Josef Schulz

    Highway viaducts, industrial buildings, hangars, and small, abandoned structures that once functioned as frontier checkpoints are among the subjects Josef Schulz has chosen for the large-scale photographs in “Crossings.” The works initially appear to be verisimilar portrayals but soon reveal themselves to be digitally manipulated. Occupying the boundary between reality and imagination, the images present the structures in recognizable yet subtly altered form, the artist having erased highway signs, posters on walls, company initials on buildings, and people. And so a gigantic hangar, emptied of

  • picks October 17, 2007

    Jorge Peris

    Installed in two spaces in the gallery, Jorge Peris’s latest exhibition, a homage to the god of war and protection titled “Marte in Gaia e Cosimo,” means to astonish. As the viewer descends the steps leading into the small cellar operating as an annex to the gallery’s traditional space, the deafening noise of a motor becomes apparent. The sensation on entering is dislocating. At regular intervals, a large compressor shoots a jet of air and sand that grazes a corner of the cellar. The force of the ejecta corrodes the wall’s plaster, creating an increasingly deep hole. On heading to the third

  • picks August 27, 2007

    Seb Patane

    Violenza D’Avanguardia” (Violence of the Avant-Garde), the title of Seb Patane’s first solo show in Italy, refers to a phrase coined by the founders of Lotta Continua, the far-left political movement that emerged in Italy in the 1970s. References to such sensational events and moments are only one point on the path that connects this artist, now a resident of London, to the country of his birth. Patane extracts photographs from period newspapers and chooses nineteenth-century prints, to which he applies graphic flourishes. As a result, the selected images become vehicles for fresh meanings, as

  • Gregor Schneider

    The title of Gregor Schneider’s recent show, “26.11.2006”—the date of its first day—was not chosen by chance. This was Totensonntag (Sunday of the Dead), the last Sunday before Advent, and therefore the last of the church year, when German Protestants remember those who have recently passed away. The exhibition took place at the Palazzo dei Principi Caracciolo d’Avellino, the headquarters of the Fondazione Morra Greco, on the extremely narrow Via Anticaglia. Visitors entered through a small opening in the rear facade of the palazzo and walked down a cramped staircase to arrive at Schneider’s

  • Elisa Sighicelli

    “Phi”—the title of Elisa Sighicelli’s latest, almost psychedelic exhibition—was a tremendously effective investigation of the disruptive power of light: light transformed, broken down into multicolored particles, projected, and filtered by backlit surfaces. Thus in Film without Film (all works 2006), some hundred or so bulbs, attached to the walls at a height of about three feet from the floor, flashed on and off in sequence, giving the impression of a light source that ran along the walls of one room in the gallery. The optical illusion produced by the successive appearance of the lights resulted

  • Nicola Gobbetto

    For his show “Shapeless Shape,” Nicola Gobbetto, a young Milanese artist, totally transformed the gallery space into a white polystyrene grotto. Upon entering Cave (all works 2006), one lost all points of reference, and it was no longer possible to recognize the square space of the room that held the installation. Instead of smooth walls, there were polystyrene monoliths that formed recesses and projections. The ceiling, usually traversed by neon tubes, was transformed by layers of polystyrene panels. It was indeed like being in a cave, but one that had nothing natural about it. The feeling,

  • picks August 20, 2006

    Eric Wesley

    Two gigantic sculptures fill the gallery space: Their irregular shapes tend toward the spherical, but they are imperfect, made up of pieces put together with expanded polyurethane foam. These constitute the pièces de résistance of this solo show, “You say tomato, I say tomato,” the title of which is inspired by Gershwin’s “Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off.” This unexpected name was perhaps chosen for the correspondences and oppositions that coexist in each work. For example, in the case of the two volumes, each of which invades a room of the gallery, Wesley used two opposing processes: addition

  • picks July 20, 2006

    Luca Trevisani

    Several sculptures made from translucent resin and a video presented on a wall-mounted monitor make up “Clinamen,” this solo exhibition by the young artist Luca Trevisani. The title’s reference to the epicurean principle introduced by Lucretius into the ancient philosophy of atomism is borne out by the phenomena evoked by the works on view: motion, the creation of energy, and the passages between physical states, as from solid to liquid. These abstractions describe, in too summary a fashion, Trevisani’s sophisticated work, which begins here with the titular video, shot from the top of a skateboard

  • picks July 17, 2006

    Sarah Ciracì

    In Sarah Ciracì's latest solo show, three paintings, immersed in darkness and invisible by daylight, emerge in the luminous glow of a black light. The phosphorescent images are recognizable icons, symbols unequivocally tied to the drama of human history, like the mushroom cloud, and philosophical concepts, such as the yin and the yang. The show acts as an admonition, warning of our inability to control technology, a message clearly announced through the works' titles. Detonation of XX-10 Priscilla, a 37-kiloton atomic bomb, on 24 June 1957. Nevada, USA, 2006, describes the devastating power of

  • picks July 03, 2006

    Elisa Sighicelli

    Over one hundred light bulbs, strung in a horizon line, switch on and off in sequence. Titled Film senza film (Film Without Film), 2006, it is one of the psychedelic installations that Elisa Sighicelli presents in this show, titled “Phi.” Each uses light as a point of departure, transforming it, breaking it down into multicolored particles, projecting it, and filtering it by means of backlit surfaces. In Film senza film, the optical illusion produced by the lights creates unexpected effects, and the viewer has the impression of being at the center of a revolving space. In contrast, Fan-tasmagoria

  • Padraig Timoney

    A large group of paintings, extremely diverse in size, technique, and subject, were hung on the largest wall of the gallery, without any obvious common denominator. The viewer received no help in understanding the mechanisms that determined Padraig Timoney’s choices—a reticence typical of this Irish artist’s work. In this exhibition, “One Year Speaks Clear Some Years’ Peaks Clear,” Timoney drew us along a difficult path, in search of a theme.

    Arranged on the upper portion of the wall, on a large canvas hung lengthwise, appeared some multicolored lettering. With difficulty, one could read the