Walking down the stairs and into Pierluigi Calignano’s solo show, “L-Ray,” was like being catapulted into another time, different from today’s reality—a time that has existed and might still exist, in part, but which cannot be sorted out in linear or chronological fashion. One could say the show seemed to take place in the imperfect tense—a tense for describing repeated actions or ongoing states in the past—and that the temporality of Calignano’s “constructions” is an ironic and sentimental mix of eras, both of history (especially art history) and of an individual life story. Thus, ingenious machines from Leonardo’s or Agostino Ramelli’s Renaissance studies of hydraulics coexist with light sculptures like something out of the American minimalism of the ’60s, Duchampian bachelor machines, and an approach to color reminiscent of Pop art, the whole ensemble evoking childhood games.
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