Curva Blu is INCURVA’s artist residency programme. Curva Blu unfolds in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, on the Island of Favignana, a diverse natural environment, a territory of exploration and discovery.
Its specificity and peculiar location intend to harmonise with the artists’ processes and researches.
The project aims to offer a place for artists who search a totally unique condition, where geographical, historical, and social peculiarities can become source of inspiration, base for experimentation, new dialogues and exchange.
The first edition of Curva Blu, held in September and October 2016, focuses on the dialogue between artists and the territory.
Seeing the concept of dialogue as a dialectical form of encounter and exchange, in this first edition the curators have paired artists from diverse nationalities, Lupo Borgonovo (IT) and Samara Scott (UK); Nicola Martini (IT) and Stephen G. Rhodes (USA).
The artists are invited to use the time offered on the island to research and deepen themes and processes already present in their work, whilst being contaminated by the other artist’s presence and the specific characteristics of the territory.
By using each practice’s process and discourse as creative point of departure we wish to initiate new forms of artistic production focused on collaboration encouraging also new critical perspectives and visions.
Marianna Vecellio and Attilia Fattori Franchini
Lupo Borgonovo (b. 1985, Italy)
Lupo Borgonovo searches for the boundless pleasure in experimenting with materials and shapes. He proceeds through mixing and associating materials, confronting solids and liquids, existing and imaginary objects, refined and brut materials. His surrealist sculptures seem to (re)become organic and living, edible, adoptable. Yet hard to grasp, since they emerge from a chemical and poetical kitchen which provokes a strange fascination, as if something exotic; extraterrestrial organs, mutant machines, transfigured moods. The impermanence of the process and the instinctive dimension of the relation to the material urges Borgonovo to create sculptures that seem ready to convulse. (Marie Villemin)
Samara Scott (b. 1985, UK)
Samara Scott uses materials that mix the bodily with the industrial or chemical which create confused reactions of both familiarity and disgust. Her work has an intimacy and repulsion that is tied up within the body, which combined with such familiar everyday materials, has a sense of place rooted in contemporary culture. Samara Scott’s practice revolves around the devouring of stimuli, her interdisciplinary background has given her a thirst for discovering the material properties of substances. She often equates material with her experience of the body and uses everyday matter to describe sensations and evoke feelings.
Nicola Martini (b. 1984, Italy)
Nicola Martini’s practice is characterized by an intrinsic dualism in which empirical research and ritual coexist. Ancestral procedures such as baking, mixing and melting take Nicola Martini’s work to a sort of ground zero of sculpture, in which the artist allows the physical properties of the substances to guide the final form of the object (or of the space activated by the artist’s intervention) that is almost dictated by the physical characteristics of the materials and their reciprocal interactions. This cognitive tension, expressed through continuous experimentation, emerges into a category of thought that is common to different cultures and eras: revelation. Revelation to be interpreted as the vital link between material and idea, a link through which a chemical process dismantles preexisting paradigms in favor of a new system of understanding, and a mathematical formula opens the way to metaphysical speculation. Through his works, Nicola Martini reveals to himself – as well as to the viewer – the fundamental relativity of physical and perceptive assumptions. Incongruous materials such as bitumen of Judea, shellac, concrete and colophony interact to create reactions that change with time, that generate physical tensions and unstable equilibriums, which remind us that matter is never static nor inert.
Stephen G. Rhodes (b. 1977, USA) & Barry Johnston (b. 1980, USA)
Starting with references ranging from myths about the first president of the United States, George Washington, to the biographies of historical thinkers like Immanuel Kant and Aby Warburg, or films like Walt Disney’s The Song of the South (1946), William Friedkin’s The Exorcist (1973) and Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining (1980), Stephen G Rhodes builds up immersive multimedia installations that collapse the distinctions between immediacy and representation, history and fiction, conscious and unconscious. Using Hollywood green- screen technology, Rhodes might insert himself into a preexisting filmic source, while also using the cinematic apparatus as a sculptural element, whether by projecting it onto or through disparate surfaces, or by setting the projector itself into motion. These mechanisms destabilize our relations to cultural conventions, and throw even the position of the viewer into doubt. (Andrew Maerkle, Extract from «(NON) POSSE (NON) PECCARE», in: ART-IT online, 29.01.2016)
Barry Johnston’s sculpture, poetry, and performance are simultaneously destructive and ecstatic. Drawing from a wealth of influences ranging from Jean Genet to Norman O. Brown to Patti Smith, Johnston’s work asserts the liberatory potential of a kind of violent celebration of presence, each piece another attempt to find the exit, another temporary threshold further into the present moment.
Marianna Vecellio – chief curator
Curator, researcher and writer she is an art historian. In 2012 she has been appointed as curator at Castello di Rivoli Museo d’Arte Contemporanea, Rivoli/Torino – where she works since 2007. She has curated various exhibitions and publications such as Andres Serrano’s Via Crucis, Massimo Grimaldi’s Before The Images, Intenzione Manifesta ePaloma Varga Weisz, and the monographic catalogues John McCracken e Luigi Ontani. She collaborates to numerous editorial projects with a particular attention to historical research in the compilation of chronological and anthological histories. From 2009 she is in the commitee board of Public Art of the City of Torino. She has contributed to numerous Italian and International magazines.
Attilia Fattori Franchini – curator
Associate Director of Seventeen and founded the online platforms bubblebyte.org and Opening Times. She regularly writes essays, criticism and interviews for various publications including Kaleidoscope and Flash Art International. Fattori-Franchini was part of the curatorial Team for Material Art Fair, Mexico, 2016, Open Source Festival, London and Bold Tendencies London, both in 2015, and she is currently working on a series of online commissions for Kiasma, Museum of Modern Art in Helsinki that will launch in 2017.
Upcoming and recent projects include: ARS17 Online, Kiasma, Helsinki, 2017 (upcoming); Europa and the Bull, LambdaLambdaLambda, Pristina, Kosovo, June 2016; Oa4s, Temra and David in four parts, Sorbus, Helsinki, May 2016; Yves Scherer, Snow White and The Huntsman, Mexico City, 2016; Basic Instinct, Seventeen, London, 2015.
Curva Blu studios are set in the wonderful estate of Museum Ex-Stabilimento Florio delle Tonnare di Favignana e Formica (museum’s website)
Curva Blu is supported by our forward-looking technical sponsors:
Curva Blu is made in partnership with the following institutions:
Heartfelt thanks to everyone who helped and experienced Curva Blu in 2016:
Isabella Bortolozzi Galerie, Galleria Monica De Cardenas, Ermes-Ermes, Kaufmann Repetto, The Sunday Painter, Giuseppe Pagoto, Luigi Biondo, Renato Alongi, Calogero Gammino e il team delle guide del Museo, Peppe Nnue, Renato Leotta, Gianni Politi, Ignazio Mortellaro, Laboratorio Saccardi, Laura Barreca, Orit Gat, Thom O’nions, Dominik Arni, Lisa Rampilli, Jacopo Menzani, Nicola Ratti, Elena D’Angelo, Ilaria Orsini, Lara Favaretto, Rosario Riginella, Lorenzo Barbera, Manuela Trapani, Grazia Palmisano, Fabio Pantaleo, Antonio Lo Presti, Gaspare Ernandez, Pina, Antonio De Luca, Vincenzo Ritunno.