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Sotto: particolare di pavimento in mosaico, realizzato per la storica villa Rosnati di Appiano Gentile, che richiama le stesse forme visionarie dei piatti raffigurati nelle pagine precedenti.

H

uman creativity has witnessed a tremendous acceleration. Ever since E. J. Marey represented in 1886 the movement sequence of a man while running, artists have been able to produce a vast range of figurative manifestations, forms and expressive strategies, with no limits as far as materials are concerned. Today artist no longer set limits for themselves in the use of colour, they allow natural elements and technical sophistication (digital sounds, laser beams…) to combine with each other,

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installing these works in natural settings and utilising old materials with increasing frequency. Gillo Dorfles grasps and “reads” these new creative bearings; he elaborates and communicates them but is also able to artistically concretise figures and colours that bring to mind the pre-classic period of pre-Colombian civilisation as well as cultures linked to northern Europe. His sensibility produces a creative output that is more and more recognisable in terms of themes, emotions, touch and colour. Dorfles had already produced small statuettes (1944) that were painted and then baked in the Laiatico furnace near Pisa; his stylistic characteristics are shown in certain plates (on brass and sea shell supports) that echo North American culture that is in turn influenced by the Meso-American one. These signs have been so profoundly absorbed by indigenous culture that after a thousand years we find them once again in modern artists such as Wilfredo Lamm and Matta,

and even capable of influencing aspects of European culture, of whom Mirò is an example. Similarly, Gillo Dorfles’ material culture, arising from a rich and powerful imagination, provides us with two further examples of that communicative wealth and power that awakens sleepy emotions and fanciful frights in order to tell, once again, with irony and skill, another brief tale in ceramics. Dorfles has been able to semantically recharge the art of drawing by absorbing Kandinsky’s lesson as principally expressed in “Surface line point.” In this particular case, Dorfles has been able to produce two ceramic plates, with the technical know-how and tools available at the Erman workshop at Albisola and by utilising very bright enamels that highlight a number of visionary forms with scratches that define and outline the background painting so as to enhance both sign and colour. Today these plates express that graphic and pictorial know-how and determination full of vitality and luminosity that only ceramics can give. With a particularity: the colour in such high temperatures (just under one thousand degrees) produces a different result each time - something that surprises the artist himself. Just a few more degrees, an unusual position during the baking, is enough to produce different results, effects and hues, thanks to the marvellously tricky nature of this material - a material that can change, alter, deform and break during processing. Clay and its derivatives have always had a code that contains an idea that is initially conceptual and successively aesthetic. Ancient civilisations have expressed themselves through this material with recognisable stylistic features. It is no coincidence that many artists, after having matured often tortuous experiences, feel the need to go back to manipulating soil: Pablo Picasso, Wilfredo Lamm, Bridget Riley and Céline. Through these latest works Dorfles himself expresses, with images that are as clear and fresh as ever, the regained equilibrium between his cultural wealth and the obscure and luminous complexity of Nature.

Profile for Fondazione Cologni dei Mestieri d'Arte

Artigianato 52  

Italian Magazine about arts and crafts

Artigianato 52  

Italian Magazine about arts and crafts

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