Giuseppe De Mattia “Produzione Propria” at OPR gallery, Milan

Lots of artists deliver on their own at a time when the classical ideas of possession and authorship are invested by the logic of profile, anonymity and local community. From this consciously not comfortable position, one can categorical oneself freely, vulgarly. 

Ladri di piastrelle

In the installation and overall performance work Nunca fui turista em Lisboa! Giuseppe De Mattia interprets the illegal trade in azulejos, glazed ceramics of Arab origin that adorn the walls of several Iberian metropolitan areas, composing figurative, abstract and geometric motifs into a gallery room. Azulejos thieves secretly remove the tiles to sell them to tourists as souvenirs, building a black market that supports entire people by exfoliating their cities. Furthermore, the 300 tiles mounted on the partitions of OPR Gallery are destined to be eradicated and then bought independently by the exhibition audience for the modest selling price of a memento. The De Mattia’s tiles are a individual interpretation of the most popular square form. All with each other they make up a attractive floral sample. But taken one by just one they expose the stylisation of a male member. The parallelism concerning black industry and gallery reveals how the artist showcases the mechanisms of art to refer to broader economic and social narratives this sort of as the actual estate speculation that plagues some spots and the part of individuality in the management of prevalent merchandise. The fake testimony of a thief of azulejos, which Giuseppe De Mattia presents in audio sort, is in actuality centred on the self-legitimisation of the delinquent who, like any great artist, finds inside of himself the good reasons for his steps. At the stop of the functions, it is hence significant not to be fooled by the enthusiasm of the exchanges. Just take a fantastic glance at what continues to be in just about every person’s hands. 

Ingegno di Mola 

This is not the initially time that De Mattia has applied procedures and units typical of road trading, also making irony out of the artist’s will need to market in buy to make a dwelling. In Ingenuity and Independence (That is It, MAMbo, Bologna, 2018) he collects 7 performances targeted on clandestine exchanges. In Esposizione di frutta e verdura (Materia, Rome, 2019. Curated by Vasco Forconi) he transforms the exhibition place into a shop by making use of a massive show for authentic and faux fruits and greens. Ingegno di Mola sequence is also together these traces, which reworks the illegal follow, prevalent in the South, of location up a chair close to the entrance doorway with illustrations of products for sale in the personal home. For the black and white silver salts photographic series, Giuseppe De Mattia shoots on site, portraying true chairs/displays from the village of Noha, in Salento. A backdrop sketched with a white fabric, having said that, pretends a studio reproduction, abstracting the object from the urban material and supplying the representation an idealised value. In the sculpture, on the other hand, the artists substitutes the Salento chair for one particular developed subsequent the instructions dictated in the 1970s by the designer Enzo Mari, who saw in self-structure an escape route from the logic of capitalism. On this historicised chair, nevertheless, food stuff has turn out to be pretend and the valuable yellow gold, oil, is mediated by a black and white photograph. 

Piccola storia ignobile che gli tocca raccontare

De Mattia works by using historical and conventional languages and gadgets in an unexpected way. In the formality of the vintage, he drops the tale of negligible or marginal episodes, circumventing the narrative domain of highest systems to denounce underhand economies and moralities of a various variety. A listing of values and behaviour, often sweetened by the artistic narrative of the current, needs criticism and consideration. Gimmicks, thievery, petty malfeasance, deceit and subterfuge describe historical connivances among man, graphic and landscape. The representation of art as a metaphorical, social and anthropological item is the price about which the overall Giuseppe De Mattia universe finds its raison d’être. The terracotta whistling mask Testa di Gianni, Fischia! tells of the time when De Mattia paid out his artist friend Gianni D’Urso to whistle on command and files the acceptance. The do the job evokes the Apulian custom of translating costume scenes and serious people into a terracotta whistle. The seem that goes through Gianni’s head can make the memory at any time existing and applicable. The entire exhibition merges into a one genre scene, from Bari to Lisbon, traversed by a breath of vitality that phone calls the audience to participate in the feast (or slaughter) of the worldimage. Mustard all’ancienne “Those who have not acknowledged the Ancien régime can by no means know what the sweetness of life was”. PrinceDuke Talleyrand, 1 of the greatest exponents of political chameleonism, thus fed the reactionary cravings of the French, manipulating the earlier in the form of a memorable lost paradise. Like the mighty Talleyrand, De Mattia presents an graphic of the artist self that is suitable for all seasons. On the a single hand, he is able of pandering to the retro-refined preferences of the cultured (a dollar blackens the pupils at the clap of the income sign up). On the other it is nimble in relocating, candidly, in the poor undergrowths of the unbiased scenes. To be an artist, just one could possibly say, just one must be able to invent at minimum just one (of artists). And to bring it to the phase. Giuseppe De Mattia is an sophisticated, anti-magic and tragicomically practical just one. A man who, with the order and approach of an archivist of folklore, builds symbolic credibility in get to expose its falsehood, sowing doubt on the genuine beliefs of white hetero cisgender Westerners and finding their fear of taking it or, even worse, of not currently being in a position to place it on. 

Gabriele Tosi

at OPR gallery, Milan
right until November 15, 2022

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