Italians have an intrinsic love of the aesthetic, such is their rich history. From the grandiose architecture of Ancient Rome to Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo’s defining artworks, Italy is a cornerstone of European art. It’s not all classical though, there’s also a vibrant contemporary art scene, with artists pushing boundaries as their forebears did. One of the leaders of this new gang is sculptor Edoardo Tresoldi.
Ghostly apparitions of structures stand where Tresoldi has once been. Leaving behind the remnants of a thought he’s had, or a place he’s imagined, the wire mesh sculptures are bold in one light and almost invisible in another. Their sensorial presence provokes instant curiosity, an urban oasis, a momentary lapse in a busy day.
In our increasingly secular world, religion jars with the contemporary collective conscience that has rebelled against religion as a mandatory practice, yet still longs for its spiritual guidance in a profane landscape largely bereft of deep meaning or ancient connection. That’s why, in architecture, churches are heralded for their blend of practical - after all, it’s built with a distinct purpose - and decorative vision. When one is in a Holy building, it is felt as much as seen.
Monastic in their silent virtue, Tresoldi’s creations have the awe-inspiring power of such a building, one where visitors can be transported from one world to another, even if only for a moment. The transparency of his works makes them seem otherworldly and deeply atmospheric. Tresoldi’s background in film and scenography has clearly informed his process.
Enveloping his audience in a quasi-mystical realm, the Italian artist’s immersive works are experiential - something to be seen and felt in the flesh - just as a film is best experienced in the cinema. A lot of his works coalesce with the environment; human, natural and architectural. This intended interplay juxtaposes ideas with reality. A combination of what is (whole, solid) and what could be (transparent, mesh).
The ‘poetry of absence’ in his work is a profound idea that hinges on the notion that the silent evidence of a situation - the truth that isn’t yet known, the unread books in a library - are of more worth than what is in front of us and what we already know and can see. When the light catches the structural framework of the mesh, it imbues it with motion. It is this optical illusion that gives it its true sense of absence.
Clearly, the works are physically there, yet it’s only there inasmuch as if you rubbed your eyes, it might have disappeared by the time you look again. Just as the real and the imaginary seem to weave between each other, so does the classic elements of his Italian history with the contemporary elements of his novel approach to art.
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