“It was a path one had to walk, straight and alone…until one crossed the dark and desolate valleys and finally reached the pure air to linger on the edge of a high and limitless plain. Imagination, freed from the chains of fear and law, then became one with vision. And the Act, intrinsic and absolute, was its meaning, and the bearer of its passion.”
There is something that unites these words written by painter Clifford Still in a Letter to Gordon M. Smith and Andrea Marchesini’s action. Perhaps that individual and intimate path that, over the years, has liberated a style that to this day is specific and personal, albeit constantly evolving.
In our time there is determined the coexistence of various and dissimilar modes of expression and, unlike what had happened in the twentieth century, there are no homogeneous and unitary movements but individual personalities whose creative value of the ego is exalted. We are in the age of the “egocalypse,” says Vincenzo Trioni, and Marchesini’s work is concrete proof of this.
Marchesini delves into the interstices of the present, into a complex, layered and elusive temporality that is not approached as an obstacle or barrier but as an extraordinary challenge and stimulating opportunity. He composes the contours of its appearances, does not shirk, shows implicit roots and unexplored intentions. Seemingly unspecified forms speak with some precision of what the creative perceives. They coincide with what is outlined in front-and then erased. From the way the figures emerge and fade, distance and juxtapose with one another, one senses an expansive web of forces, a continuous questioning of the subjects’ assertion. It is the configuration of a sensation, the natural growth of the need to express in form and color the prism of imagination.
The canvas in front of us thus possesses an overtly autobiographical value; Marchesini speaks to us of his “I” openly. A perturbed feeling is perceptible that, without a prejudiced approach, is concealed by the use of garish color. Green squares, pink shapes, bright yellow backgrounds and precious fabrics build up works in which there is truth.
They are interpretations, extraordinary and exuberant, emerging in the form of humanoid, alien, fluid and geometric figures that ask to be scrutinized in detail to discover their identity.
His configurations are explosions of mystical meaning that find justification not in any duty of the artist to society, but in what he owes to himself, in his need to make visible the intimate core of his being.
The Marchesinian imaginative world possesses a subterranean sense of pure unconscious revelation. It was up to the Surrealist movement, in the postwar period, to codify this type of discovery and erect it as its own principle. Surrealism fascinated by Freud’s discoveries, through the doctrine of psychic automation, saw art as a means of revealing the hidden world of the unconscious. Marchesini, whose work differs in other substantial respects from the Surrealist painters, evokes some references to them (Miró) along with slight influences of an expressionist nature (Francis Bacon, Jackson Pollock, Clifford Still). Chromatic forms germinate in images that remain unknown, or at least unexpected to their creator until the moment of their appearance. Enigmatic and complex presences originate to the point of becoming labyrinthine tangles, vegetable, organic and mental circumvolutions. According to the somewhat ingenious observation of the creative, it can be said that he replaces the repressed microcosm with an unattainable macrocosm. He expands the limits of our perception by deepening the cosmology of a subjective and mental universe, through a repertoire of images in which Marchesini retains his own and characteristic elusiveness, as if he has now gained ready access to his subconscious that he no longer has much reason to fear what it contains.
These works are the vigorous expression of his intellectual energy and sensitive perception, the telltale signs are half-hidden among the whimsical painted surfaces. For example, the perfect, flat layering of the background is fundamental basis, a temporary tabula rasa from which everything begins. Once the first spherical form is generated, dripping effects are combined with rapid, seemingly improvised brush swirls, branching, dense drippings are extended, fabrics, lacework and, in recent productions, fragments of rounded mirrors are inserted. Forms and materials that in the overall view generate a relationship.
Pure visual aesthetics become something else in the eyes of the careful observer. Volumes, chromatic and stylistic details together compose and convey different moods, allude to different possible values: a continuous contrast in search of coexistence.
These are not immediate works; they require time.
Marchesini’s is an alphabet that we cannot easily translate but the recurrence of symbols and forms, the result of a kind of obsessive component, implies the presence and construction of meaning.
The canvases are composed as Logos for the artist, a discourse that unifies and collects in images the multiplicity of being in order to find, more than a balance, a logic of existence.
Marchesini’s painting witnesses a new vision that describes and identifies the multiplicities of the sensible, obviously departing from achieving a primacy of absolute truth. It stops, however, and highlights on the canvas, the aspects of an ever-changing image of thought.
It can be said that Marchesini generates and operates the concept that Nietzsche identifies with Will to Power, the creative freedom of man, the Act that is the source of meanings and interpretations that becomes the possibility for the artist to become what he is. The Will to Power consists in creating, or rather in re-creating being to the measure of one’s own beyond-humanity, and as an interpretative force one grasps the essence and origin of perspectival multiplicity. Thus, at every moment, a relationship is established between sensibility and becoming in which the main features are grasped and brought out through an aspect traceable to a form. This is why Marchesini’s painting style is a means of self-assertion.
In his action, the painter from Vicenza encodes signals, indications and horizonless perspectives of his own perception in the contemporary age, coloring the exuberance of his reactions and involving us in his own spectator-actor being.
Marchesini’s work can be said to announce a poetics of the relationships between creatures, imagery and their temporalities. Marchesini’s introspective and conceptual vocation is the element, which, like the technique, makes him an emerging figure of relevant interest in the panorama of Italian painting of our time.