AboutThe Fine Art Society is delighted to announce the first UK solo show of works by acclaimed Italian artist Carlo Gavazzeni Ricordi.
The exhibition will showcase 12 large-scale, photographic works which capture the forgotten monuments of Rome. Amongst Gavazzeni Ricordi's favourite subjects is the 19th century theatre at Villa Torlonia, which he photographed before a recent restoration by Pirelli Cultura. This impressive structure was in disrepair for many years, but within its crumbling, graffiti-stained walls the artist was able to evoke the beauty of a neglected yet dignified interior. The space holds particular fascination for the artist, whose grandfather was principal conductor and artistic director at La Scala, as it is filled with memories of performances and unites his passion for art, music and theatre. He has also photographed landmarks of the Grand Tour including the Villa Medici, the Forum and the Castel Sant'Angelo, bringing their less familiar aspects into the consciousness of a contemporary audience.
An entirely self-taught artist, Gavazzeni Ricordi has developed his own techniques to create a range of effects in his work. His negatives are sometimes destroyed within two days due to the high level of chemicals and processes he uses. By heightening the three dimensional effect and repeatedly shooting the same negative to achieve different viewpoints, the artist communicates great immediacy in his works. They also have a fantastical quality, as the artist disguises the location by reversing or superimposing the images. Their âliquid' finish gives the work a highly contemporary appeal, yet their âsfumato' aesthetic also harks back to a long artistic tradition.
Gavazzeni Ricordi's whimsical depictions of landscapes and architecture have been compared to the series of prints Carceri d'Invenzione done by Giovanni Battista Piranesi in the eighteenth century, which have gone on to influence countless architects, artists and set designers. His Teatri d'Invenzione, like Piranesi's etchings, depict a Rome which is shrouded in mystery and imagination.