Apr 2016
Cristiana Colli

Artesias a generously-sized round table, featuring a central base reminiscent of the cactus from which it takes its name. It consists of six curved, wedge-shaped, wooden panels, applied protruding over the central plinth. The panels are 3D printed.

The top (160 or 180 cm) features a rounded edge sub-divided, in the wood version, into four wedges that give rise to an interesting geometric pattern. Asterias can also be fitted with a practical accessory: a central Lazy Susan turntable, very popular in Asian countries.

He has talked about the Orient that has moved from its thousand-year-old past to become hypermodern in the extreme, shortcircuit, explosive energy, he has listened to the Sinologists; he has experimented with the selected focus technique which dematerializes, conceptualizes and blurs edges so that pictures of an actual city look like pictures of a model.

In Olivo Barbieri’s art there is the intelligence of the composition, the freedom of the linguistic leaps, the coexistence of meanings and aesthetics, the shifts in time and in history - captured in a pinball machine, in a city by night, in a view from on high in flight. Thus the density of the world and of that interior Orient lands on a table and sets it in motion - with that heightened mobility that sucks in rotating food and states of mind that unsettle the diners.

In the center of the horizontal scene, static and totemic in the milky rarefaction of the space, that table hosts a reversal, an exchange between proportions and perceptions, a process of infinite recomposition of the focal points. Enveloped and guided by a dynamic vertical presence, a black and white abstraction that caresses the surface that becomes a screen, perhaps a banquet, community. In the infinite circular movement, the sidereal dialogue between shades of white is interrupted by an intimate, domestic sentiment, the brown of the packaging, cardboard as a rug and anchorage, recollection and memories of countless arrivals and departures.

Olivo Barbieri

Is an internationally renowned artist. Since 1971 he has worked with images: he made Flippers 1977-1978, and in 1984 took part in Viaggio in Italia - Bari 1984. In the early Eighties he began a series about artifical lighting in European and Far Eastern cities, and since 1989 he has travelled constantly in the Far East, above all in China, conducting on-going research into the great changes underway and how they are depicted.

In 1996 the Folkwang Museum in Essen hosted his first retrospective exhibition. Since the mid Nineties he has adopted a photographic technique that enables him to keep only certain points of the image in focus.
In 2003 he started the site specific project which involves 40 world cities. The site specific series (2003–2013), Parks (2003-2014), Real Words (2008-2013), Images (1978-2007), Virtual Truths (1996 2002) and Artificial Illuminations (1980-2014) share a common reflection on the amount of reality present in our way of life, on the way it is perceived and understood. In 2015 he made the film La Città Perfetta, presented at the retrospective Olivo Barbieri. Images 1978-2014 exhibition at the MAXXI Museo Nazionale delle Arti del XXI secolo.

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