Newman Popiashvili Gallery is pleased to present the second solo show by Italian artist Italo Zuffi.
Italo Zuffi will present two new sculptural works. The first one – La replica meticulously recreates the building blocks in marble from Carrara and a carved tiny semi-precious stone. Each group of objects is a one to one, exact reproduction of the original bricks. These work comment on the human nature and our desire to build and destroy. Since childhood we play with Lego and Tinker Toys with this idea of constructing and razing. Italo Zuffi embarks on an absurdist task to manually replicate industrially made materials in precious stone. La replica has a strong connection to architecture since the bricks refer to the ABC of the construction. The presence of small toy-bricks, carved in a semi-precious stone, and placed on the top of some of the ‘real’ bricks, is meant to suggest the often destructive attitude typical of the childhood, in contrast with the more conscious and stable awareness of adult time. The concepts of construction and destruction are here, subtly, singled out as the two primary activities between which human nature is constantly oscillating.
The second set of works, titled Masters Spanning (2007), is a group of geometrical, rectangular ceramics with writings on them. The lines modelled on the surface of these works are, in fact, a combination of names of artists that Italo Zuffi has been studying joined in such a way that it is not possible to discern where the domain of one artist ends and that of the second one begins e. g. Agnes Martin Kippenberger or Douglas Gordon Matta Clark. Through these arranged names the artist wants to state the inability of clearly establishing the boundaries of memory and knowledge, as well as their range of action and influence. These names also testify the perpetual struggle in trying to classify or organize the information stored in our memory with particular reference to the artist’s own background and artistic training.
Italo Zuffi has been shown extensively throughout Europe. His recent solo exhibitions were at FPAC, Palermo, and at Museo dell’Arredo Contemporaneo, Russi in Italy; CRAC Alsace, in France; Altkirch and Volume, Rome; Galleria Continua, San Gimignano, among others. His work has been included in group shows at Fondazione Arnaldo Pomodoro, Milan; Musée d’Art Moderne de Saint-Etienne; Coleman Project Space, London; W139, Amsterdam; Galeria Arsenal, Bialystok; Palazzo Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin and De Appel, Amsterdam.