Milan and the Mountains according to Velasco
Leonardo da Vinci and Claude Monet among his sources of inspiration
HE PORTRAYS THE CITY AND NATURAL LANDSCAPES
IN AN UNMISTAKABLE AND UNIQUE STYLE
THAT FUSES THEM TOGETHER
Until May 25, M77 Gallery houses the solo show called “Velasco Vitali. Veduta” (“Velasco Vitali: View”).
The exhibition, which is curated by Danilo Eccher, occupies the two floors of the gallery and focuses on the city of Milan and the mountains the artist loves so much. The first room of the exhibition, on the ground floor, is an extremely evocative and fascinating place. In the centre, there is a large canvas portraying a landscape of the Prealpi of Lombardy. The work draws inspiration from a little drawing by Leonardo da Vinci, created, they say, from Milan Cathedral. Vitali represents the same landscape da Vinci did, but on a larger scale; moreover, he enriches it with the colours and personal feelings that characterise his relationship with the place. In front of an artificial lake that was built on purpose, he creates an interesting play of reflections and shifting perspectives that seem to double the work and create a sort of vision that gains new meanings. The lake represents a place to meditate, where the reflections of the artist, and of the observer, are reflected and deepened.
Upstairs, the exhibition focuses on Milan Cathedral, which is portrayed in four different moments of the day: at dawn, at noon, in the afternoon and at night. Clearly, the artist has drawn inspiration from the Rouen Cathedral series, in which Claude Monet portrayed the building in different light and weather conditions, in order to prove their strong influence on human perception, which is very different from objective reality. Differently from the impressionist artist, who focused on colour, Vitali continues using black and white only, still succeeding in rendering changing light and weather conditions with the utmost skill.
SOMETIMES THE AUTHOR GIVES UP COLOUR
AND USES BLACK AND WHITE ONLY, STILL
SUCCEEDING IN RENDERING LIGHT VARIATIONS
The exhibition hinges upon two themes that are dear to the author’s heart, the city and natural landscape, and features works that show Vitali’s unmistakable style and his aspiration to reconcile and reunite these places, in a fascinating play of references between the rocky outlines of the mountains and the towering pinnacles of the cathedral.
The artist, painter and sculptor, was born in Bellano, a small town on Lake Como, in 1960. The onset of his career dates back to his first meeting with Giovanni Testori and the participation in the “Artists and Writers” exhibition at Rotonda della Besana in Milan.
Since 1987, Vitali has dedicated a series of works to the tragic hydrogeological instability that affects the Valtellina; the works were then collected in “Paesaggio Cancellato” (“Cancelled Landscape”, curated by Roberto Tassi). In the late ’90s, he participated in the Rome Quadriennale and focused on Mediterranean ports and Southern Italian cities. Since 2005 his works have been featured in the Macro collection in Rome. Among his many exhibitions, we can mention: the Venice Biennale in 2011; the Triennale di Milano in 2013, where he presented a solo show about ghost cities that was called “Foresta Rossa” (“Red Forest” ); and the Berlinale – Berlin International Film Festival in 2015, where he was awarded the FIPRESCI prize for the documentary called “Il Gesto delle Mani” (“Hand Gestures”, 2015).
Sonia Lucia Malfatti