1992 - Andrea Gibellini

Andrea Gibellini, “Nel contegno di uno stile,” in Algol, January–March 1992

There is a picture entitled Magazzini del Sale. It is a painting that dates from some time earlier than the series of what we could call “The Houses.” The picture, painted in acrylic, is laid out within a number of sequences dominated by the volumetric depth of rectangular reliefs, fixed in the darkness by the intimacy of a beam of light: a time, the inner one, seems to have stopped, to have gathered into itself a tragic silence that presages a catastrophe, a destruction, the deep beating of an unknown heart that has to traverse, as in the most difficult of exploits, not a chaos, a clamor, but a deafening background noise, a dramatic condensation of sounds. What emerges, in this picture, is a new spatiality—“an almost Gothic spatiality,” writes Lombardi, “where the horrific fear of death and its grotesque mysteries is exorcized by a methodology of construction that is extremely rigorous, but not as a consequence less steeped in fantastic elements”—which lives its “allusion” to reality with violence. There is however, among the objects, a real condition of alienation on the artist’s part: the subject—as in some of Morandi’s copper etchings, such as the Landscape (Chiesanuova) of 1924—manages to establish a contact, despite the transience of the forms, with the nature of the things observed; indeed the figures themselves relate to one another, taking on new meanings, maintaining unaltered the initial feeling that justified the possible realization of the work. Lombardi finds a way forward in the aphasia generated by the situation, a chink that allows him to recognize an impotence, an unattainable remoteness, and then a deviation, a probability of establishing a tension between him and the object (“figures” that can reflect and generate an experience in the eye of the person who sees).