Caterina Silva, Soggetto. Oggetto. Abietto.
Preview 29th April 2015 h. 6.30 pm
30th April – 18th July 2015
Riccardo Crespi gallery presents Soggetto. Oggetto. Abietto. (Subject. Object. Abject.) a solo show by the Italian artist Caterina Silva based at the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam.
Caterina Silva investigates, through painting, the primary emotions – fear, joy, delirium – that drive the human being to the creative act.
The title of the exhibition plays on the musicality of words that recall – well away from a nursery rhyme - the complexity of the dialectic as studied by Julia Kristeva in her text Pouvoirs de l'horreur. Essai sur l'abjection, 1980 (Powers of Horror: An Essay on Abjection). According to the renowned linguist, abjection is a necessary step to build the identity, likewise it becomes part of the works by Catherine Silva packed with characters and imaginary stories embodied by forms and signs in summarized narratives.
Oil on canvas is the starting point for a careful analysis of the potentialities of painting itself and its ability to convey a meaning: Caterina Silva asserts that her works are full of meaning, and yet she refuses to establish a code (or perhaps to reveal it) in order to adhere completely to a non-systemic and non-hierarchic ideal, parallel to and consequent on gender studies – a recurrent theme in her work – and the influences of Hindu culture.
Emblematic in this sense are the works, Durgality and He, which refer respectively to the Hindu Mother Goddess, a creative and unapproachable force, and to the male principle, embodied solely by its pronoun. While the representation of the female assumes a freer form, to the point of presenting an addition of canvas on canvas, the work He frames – in the real sense of the word, as it is the only canvas with a frame – an absence. To be precise, the recurrent motif of the hole in the canvas or the fragment of earlier works that have been destroyed, broken up and put back in a new context, as in Kali, is the clearest image of that – necessary – abjection from which we would like to free ourselves, but which is always there, present.