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Solo show of a comprehensive collection of works

invitation card

invitation card

 

EUR_Libya, photographic series, Giclée prints on cotton paper on dibond panels, variable dimensions, 2010-12.

With his new photographic project, shown now for the very first time after two years in production, Federico Baronello analyzes the symbolic representation of power in its purest form, through architecture. The starting point for his research is the «Fascism embodied in stone» mentioned by the Italian historian Emilio Gentile: the ideology of power illustrated by the magnificent buildings of Italian rationalism spread between the two poles of new Fascist Rome, the Foro Italico and EUR.

EUR-3779, installation view at the group show 'The Materiality of a Dream' at the Brodbeck Foundation, Catania 2013.

Left: EUR-3779, installation view at the group show ‘The Materiality of a Dream’ at the Brodbeck Foundation, Catania 2013.

Already its title, EUR_Libya, points to the paradoxical sense of the work. The artist further suggests a metaphysical aspect: the architecture depicted appear as archeological monuments abandoned in the empty midday sun, reminiscent of the De Chirico’s Italian Piazza, but also of the Italian colonial landscapes in Africa.

EUR-3779, installation view.

EUR-3779, installation view.

Lost in time, a surreal landscape fixed in sunlight, monumental but empty, silent, found here in Italy, but it could be anywhere in the Mediterranean or even in Africa. Indeed, on closer observation, the architecture in the photographs of Federico Baronello is transformed through a surreal manoveur by the very transgressive nature of the artwork itself (i.e. the photo-montage).

EUR_3779 Headquarters of the Central Bank of Libya at the “Palace of Civilization and Work” designed by Giovanni Guerrini, Ernesto La Padula, Mario Romano, 1938-43.

EUR_3779
Headquarters of the Central Bank of Libya at the “Palace of Civilization and Work” designed by Giovanni Guerrini, Ernesto La Padula, Mario Romano, 1938-43. dim.cm.150×100.

A visual strategy inherited from the Dadaist who through the process of appropriation and de-contextualization developed the neo-avantgarde criticism during the ’60s and ’70s. However for Baronello the combination and overlapping of images and places, reminiscent of the strategy of visual artists such as Hans Haacke, without any direct bearing, does not embody the same ideological criticism. Baronello’s investigations are not a work about the real, as is the case of the German-American artist, but rather it is about the freedom of imagination, the utopia of the possible, inscribed by a minimal and discreet gesture.

As if Libya, or better North Africa, according to the definition of the ancient Greeks and then the Latins, might become Rome, and Rome in turn could really become the capital of a unified Mediterranean world. By inquiring into the meaning of Fascist architecture today, the artist questions the political and symbolic role of the institutions and of the cultural landscape in its broadest sense. In these photographs the ideological result of architecture undergoes a profound transformation, as if the original imperialist ideology had passed through the anthropophagous assimilation theorized by Brazilian modernist Oswald de Andrade, as the ultimate destiny of colonialism.

An economic post-colonialism, indeed. The names and logos of national companies that have long held trade and economic relations with Gaddafi’s Libya, appear as imprints on the surface of the «Fascism embodied in stone» photographed by Federico Baronello.

Anna Cestelli Guidi, presentation text for the solo show at the galleria collicaligreggi, Catania 2013.

Also, see the interview by Giuseppe Mendolia Calella (in Italian)

*Candy Factory Projects

*CANDY FACTORY PROJECTS is a Japanese based platform for international collaborative multimedia based art projects, a mobile art institution, organizing curatorial projects, exhibitions, web projects and publications based on long term collaborations.

Takuji Kogo, *CFP founder, has worked and developed projects with artists such as Thomas Bayrle, Federico Baronello, Mike Bode, Young Hae Chang Heavy Industries, Charles Lim Yi Yong, Keiichi Miyagawa, John Miller, Ola Pehrson and Sean Snyder. They transform standardized everyday life and the distorted landscape of the global economy into digital kaleidoscopes presented as pavilion sculpture using multi computer projections.

Federico Baronello has been a member of the Candy Factory Projects since 1999 and produced:

'Online Ads' from Kitakyushu Biennial World Tour 2013, installation view at the Olica Phone Center, Catania 2013.

‘Online Advertisements (from #1 till #13)’, short ad messages to learn Italian / Japanese while singing and having fun.
Installation view from Kitakyushu Biennial World Tour 2013 at the Olica Phone Center, Catania.

ONLINE_ADS_1

ʻOnline Adsʼ (with Takuji Kogo), installation view at *Candy Factory Projects in Rome, AuditoriumArte – Rome 2012.

Installation views of ʻOnline Adsʼ at *Candy Factory Projects in Rome, AuditoriumArte - Rome 2012.

ʻOnline Adsʼ (with Takuji Kogo), installation view at *Candy Factory Projects in Rome, AuditoriumArte – Rome 2012.

EUR (with Takuji Kogo), still from two Shockwave Flash movies, length 3'44'' and 4'34'', 2011.

‘EUR ROME’ (with Takuji Kogo), Arab Spring’s aftermath in Rome.
Still from two Shockwave Flash movies, length 3’44” and 4’34”, 2011.

'Vittoria', installation view at the group show 'IMIN' Kitakyushu Biennial, ex-JR Kyushu office bldg., Moji-Ko Kitakyushu (Japan).

‘Vittoria’ (with Takuji Kogo), a project about large scale Sicilian cherry tomato production backed by Romanian and Tunisian migrants.
Installation view at the group show ‘IMIN’ Kitakyushu Biennial, ex-JR Kyushu office bldg., Moji-Ko Kitakyushu, Japan 2009.

'Portopalo', installation view at the 'IMIN' KB.

‘Portopalo’, a comparative aesthetics between religions in the global age.
Installation view at the ‘IMIN’ KB 2009.

'Lampedusa (How To Reach)', installation view at the group show 'Cute or Creepy?' Kitakyushu Biennial, ex-JR Kyushu office bldg., Moji-Ko Kitakyushu, Japan 2007.

‘How to reach Lampedusa’ (with Takuji Kogo), a promotional video clip for the holiday resort on the border of Italy next to an African asylum seeker’s detention center.
Installation view at the group show ‘Cute or Creepy?’ Kitakyushu Biennial, ex-JR Kyushu office bldg., Moji-Ko Kitakyushu, Japan 2007.

'Librino New Town Project' (with Takuji Kogo), a re-mix and Japanese dubbing of a TV documentary about squatters in abandoned public housing project in Sicilia designed by the Japanese architect Kenzo Tange. Installation view at the group show Transformer (with Candy Factory), Akiyoshidai International Art Village, Yamaguchi, Japan 2005.

‘Librino New Town Project’ (with Takuji Kogo), a re-mix and Japanese dubbing of a TV documentary about squatters in abandoned public housing project in Sicilia designed by the Japanese architect Kenzo Tange.

librino@AIAV2

‘Librino New Town Project’ (with Takuji Kogo), installation view at the group show Transformer (with Candy Factory), Akiyoshidai International Art Village, Yamaguchi, Japan 2005.