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Dealing with the gaze

Dealing with the gaze

Onishi Gallery

New York

June 14- 27  2018

Artisti: Augusta Bariona, Marije Bijl, Rosaspina Buscarino, Judith Cordeaux, Gabriele Corni. Paolo Mazzanti, Lucrezia Roda. Paolo Rossetto


“Gazing is such a strange and marvellous thing, about which we still know so little; when gazing we tend entirely towards the exterior, yet at its most intense things seem to happen in us which awaited with passion not to be discovered”

Rainer Maria Rilke. 1907, “Letter to his wife Clara”

This exhibition investigates the theme of the gaze, not just intended as a representation, but extending to the different declensions of interiority and like a series of reflecting mirrors, it leads to the gaze of the onlookers and to their interpretative power of the work of art.

And it is the work of art which becomes an emotional field, where various energies converge, a significant platform of reality and reaching to the spiritual dimension. From a nominal form the gaze is here intended beyond its narration and representation even to the symbolic form. The eye sees in function of the relation, it throws a bridge onto the world, it reflects the soul, it tells a story, it implores, witnesses, seduces. It circumscribes spaces mediating the exchange between reality and imagination. It is life itself in the form which makes it most relevant: that of communication.

Our times require us to plunge deeper in a more integrated way compared to traditional artistic practices. The lack of attention and the absent mindedness of contemporaneity are replaced by the need to be more than ever connected to the reality which surrounds us.

The speed we are used to makes us party to a change in tendency as concerns how the fruition of the work of art comes about. In a time in which the eye finds it more and more difficult to rest its gaze, distracted by the present moment and projected towards an elsewhere, contemplation thus becomes a thing of rarity when confronted with the endless requests of reality. “the disease of the modern age” said Nietzsche in “fragments of Human, All Too Human” is an excess of experience, and the risk is to suffer the same end as Narcissus trapped in his own reflected image without seeing anything except himself Perhaps only art, in all its forms can anticipate the changes, can open one’s eyes, shake dulled minds, communicate with the collective conscience. The geometries of reason and the geographies of emotions come to our succour, they open wide a world in the moment our gaze comes to rest on the work of art and meets the gaze of the artist.

At the beginning of every creative process there is chaos, only in a second moment do the intricacies and the objects of our imagination take shape, the atmospheres and the settings. In art this process is a continuous tension, it is a subtle balancing game. In order to keep its existential value it is necessary to avert one’s gaze and then return there to see the world through different eyes, purged of useless superstructures, as if it was the first time that one looks at things, without the fear of falling into the void, into nothing. It is a sort of solar communication which interacts with our self-perception and reaches the areas of the mind and of the heart of free human beings who wish to evolve.

It is true that the world is what we see and it is equally true that we have to learn to see it and behave as if we knew nothing about it, as if we had all to learn. Art is the possibility to establish this dawn-like contact with things, a poetic impulse always reaching towards another dimension. It is a leap into the depths of existence, a world drifting from gazing, that line which traces the limits of the embrace between the visible and the invisible.

Physical and mental images are the result of the desire to stop that which is changeable, transitory and contingent. The observer is himself observed, his eye is absorbed by space and matter captured in their metamorphosis. Gestures, postures and relations dwell in suspended time as if the happenings, the everyday situations were useful to patch up art and life, between the space of the work of art and the space of reality, a challenge and a conquest in the incessant flow of time.

Stefania Carrozzini

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