The work consists in a series of six paintings. Each ones of the six canvases represent a piece of my body and their set up should approximately reassemble it.
This series is about the cycle of life-death-rebirth, a classic (but even universally eternal) theme of the mediterranean culture, inspired by the ancient myth of Dionysos Zagreus (similar to Osiris story in Egypth and to which refers also the story of the death/resurrection of the Christ), a half-god hunter that was killed and made in pieces and then reassemble and called to life again becoming a god. But what is central for me (and that is what more interest and influenced me of the ancient Greek culture) is the centrality and importance given to human being more than to the divine aspect.
What also recalled in me the reflection about this myth and the idea of representing through painting a “ritual and sacred” dissection of my body was the terrible and shocking chronicle of the hostage assassinations perpetrated in the last years by muslim terrorists in Afghanistan and Iraq (above all Daniel Pearl who was first
publicly decapitated and then had his body dissected in 10 pieces).
I first painted the head in 2007 after the traditional iconography of the 15/16th century that represents the decapitated head of St. John the Baptist in several ways.
Then, remembering also the work of Géricault, while developing the idea and working to a series of body parts I was invited to participate to a group show titled "Art Pulled in Pieces" ("Arte Fatta a Pezzi" in italian, about the question of the fragmentation of the idea of “Art”, as an absolute and unifying unity dismembered in and by the multitude of individual “artists”) that was a perfect occasion to show them for the first time.
A further level of reflection is about painting in our times, after the modernism de-costruction and destruction of classical idea of the art of figurative-realistic painting. The position of the painter, in a autobiographical and general sense, after modern and post-modern culture; the possibility of a return to the consideration, use and appreciation of the magical power of images and representation of the reality: my self-portrait in pieces, as a man who will die one day, maintains its integrity through and thanks to painting.
Another remark is about the human body as subject/object in our contemporary culture. So it has to be considered not only a “self-portrait”, portrait of a subject, but also a “still-life” (that in italian, “natura morta” and french, “nature morte”, sounds as “dead nature”), the representation of an object, just as a flower pot or a
The six paintings here presented were realised between 2007 and 2008 and are painted with tempera and oil on canvas.
The series is still in progress with new paintings on which I’m working in view of an exhibition dedicated to this theme.