New York

Franco Ciarlo

Iolas Gallery and Fordham University Library, Lincoln Center

Riding New York’s elevated subway lines, one looks down at what Franco Ciarlo calls “contemporary antiquity”—sides of to-be-demolished buildings with peeling paint and dirt silhouetting the absence of radiators, armchairs and paintings. His work has been inspired by the imprints of objects, spaces and lives which remain on the flanks of those buildings that once adjoined structures now razed to rubble.

Titled “Reflections of Demolition,” Ciarlo’s technique and product are reflections both of the site of demolition and the act of demolishing. The pigment of these “murals” or “frescoes” is carefully removed from the buildings and transferred to a stained canvas. The large canvases often consist of more than one panel, separated by a gap which represents the wall that once divided two rooms. Ciarlo’s method and completed work are at once an act of destruction and an act of restoring that which

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the May 1977 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.