Andrea Santarlasci
Riflessi da un luogo invisibile
Curated by Arabella Natalini
Galleria Passaggi, via Garofani 14 – Pisa
Opening 6 pm Friday 30 October, 2015
From 30 October 2015 to 23 January 2016
Galleria Passaggi is pleased to present Andrea Santarlasci’s solo exhibition
Riflessi da un luogo invisibile (Reflections from an Invisible Place), curated by
Arabella Natalini.
The exhibition falls within Santarlasci’s multifaceted artistic research, often
leading to the “discovery” and the “reminiscence” of places that are barely
visible or little known and can evoke a symbolic dimension: “ … the place
“suggests”, somehow even “begets” the artwork… in my opinion, to define a
place as such, and not just as an abstract and non-specific space, it must
have or allude to a “meaning”, to an “image”. It must refer to something that
evokes and at the same time takes us to an elsewhere, toward a dimension
that is not of this place, that comes to us from another context, and yet, at the
same time, it belongs to the place and is intimately preserved inside it. Very
often what appears foreign to us, that very unfamiliar element, is what
identifies a place in its specificity. Only at this point, I believe, it is possible to
speak about that exact place and not another one. This is its most interesting
aspect, the feature that makes us understand the profound specificity of a
place…” (Andrea Santarlasci).
Since the end of the 1980s, Andrea Santarlasci has been developing a
language where many and various techniques meet and intersect, such as
painting, sculpture, photography, and installation. As a result, a close
interaction of space, light, color, and sound is created.
Since his debut, the artist has been developing the themes and motifs
characterizing his poetics: the relation between the natural and the artificial,
private space and external environment, personal reflection and collective
dimension, along with the visual suggestions connected to the concepts of
doubleness and reflection, shadow and time - in a constant balance between
the emotional and the conceptual dimension. All these themes are often
characterized by either a juxtaposition or a fusion between the material and
the virtual.
The ongoing and deep meditation on the notions of place and public space highlighted especially by the relation between man and his environment seen
even in its most disquieting aspects – is a key element of the artists’ research.
Each of his artwork has an enigmatic side that offers material for reflecting
upon the condition of estrangement and amazement of the contemporary
man, in his confrontation with reality whose borders are expanding, hardly
recognizable, with its complex and contradictory aspects.
The works exhibited in Pisa stems from a larger project connected to an
ancient place in the city, a specific site where the old river Auser (now called
Serchio) merged into the Arno. Over time, the confluence of the two rivers
along with their ramifications have changed the shape of the land, whose
configuration appears today quite transformed. The original place, now
disappeared, is evoked in the gallery exhibition space, where the artworks are
connected via a sort of karstic thread tying together past and present through
a reflection upon the flowing of time and the ways we perceive it.
Among the artworks exhibited: a large installation made with recycled wooden
boards that appears like a fragment of architecture, a stair flooded by the
waters of the river, “the threshold of an old dock precariously sliding down
until it adheres to the floor”, a tree branch collected at the mouth of the
Serchio and whose edge is transformed into a sculpture reminiscent of a little
boat’s prow, flanked by a series of small pictures of fluvial landscapes and by
a painting hinting at possible, old routes along the river. Finally, a light box
diptych bearing a “fluid” writing – with the letters composing the word Auser
barely highlighted – reenacts philosophical meditations on permanence and
change, stimulating a reflection upon human existence.
This last work in particular refers to an earlier project envisaged by
Santarlasci, a project where a luminescent writing had to be placed at the
confluence of the two rivers, which is now between the urban space and the
natural bank of the Arno. In the artist’s words “An intervention that invites us to
reminisce a place that does not exist anymore and, by locating it in today’s
landscape, envisages the encounter between two different and yet
simultaneous moments in time, like in an heterochrony".
For Santarlasci, then, “the water of the river becomes that substance allowing
us to contemplate and imagine time. Liquid and dissolving, illusory and
reflecting, the water is that element that can always be compared to the other
elements…Water can dig into the mysterious depths of the earth, create,
divert, and destroy underground paths able to leave traces of their old
Biographical Info
Andrea Santarlasci was born in Pisa in 1964, where he now lives and works. After graduating
from Liceo Artistico Statale in Lucca, he attended the Accademia di Belle Arti in Venezia and
in Carrara. Between the end of the 1980s and the beginning of the 1990s, Santarlasci has
developed a form of artistic expression characterized by the coexistence of different
techniques: drawing, photography, sculpture, and installation. Starting from such topics as the
relation and opposition between the natural and the artificial, private space and external
environment, individual reflection and collective dimension, over time the artist has made
installations in industrial archeology areas, historical locations, and public spaces, opting for
natural contexts or urban locations that are quite far from traditional and conventional
exhibition spaces. Many of Santarlasci’s enviroment installations can be enjoyed both from
the inside and from the outside, as they put the different elements of the artwork in relations
with the space-place.
Among the most recent solo exhibition, we can list: Sul limite di un’altra soglia, curated by
Marco Senaldi, Sala ottagonale of the Ex Convitto Vittorino da Feltre, during Marble Weeks,
Carrara, 2014; Atopie del luogo, curated by Saretto Cincinelli and Ilaria Mariotti, Centro
Espositivo SMS and La luce che resta, installation in the bell-tower of San Michele degli
Scalzi, Pisa, 2013; Fughe senza centro, Fondazione Mudima in Milan, 2012; Nella visione
probabilmente, Inner Room - BRICK - Centro per la ricerca e cultura contemporanea, Siena,
2011; Le direzioni inverse del tempo, Galleria Davide Di Maggio, Milan, 2010.
Santarlasci’s participation to group exhibitions includes: Attraversare nuovi percorsi,
Wegallery, Berlin, 2015; A Group Show Not an Archive of Mussels, Blu Corner-project room,
Carrara, 2015; I loro desideri hanno la forma delle nuvole, Takewaygallery, Rome, 2014;
TotalSpace/Spazio Totale, D’A Spazio D’Arte, Empoli, Florence, 2014; Spazio E23, Galleria
Studio Legale, Naples, 2014; Artenatura, curated by Gianluca Ranzi, Antico Palazzo della
Pretura, Castell’Arquato, Piacenza 2013; Ripartire dalla musica per superare il terremoto,
Galleria La Nuova Pesa, Rome 2013; Abitare L’Arte e il Design, Intragallery, Naples, 2012; 25
anni con la Nuova Pesa, Galleria La Nuova Pesa, curated by Laura Cherubini, Rome, 2012;
Alfabeta2 è un’altra cosa… Riflessi dell’arte italiana, curated by Davide Di Maggio, Casinò Ca' Vendramin Calergi, Venice, 2011; The Bearable Lightness of Being-The Metaphor of the
Space 2, curated by Andrea Bruciati, Davide Di Maggio, and Lorand Hegyi, Arsenale
Novissimo, Tese di San Cristoforo, XII Biennale Internazionale dell’Architettura, Venice
Biennale 2010.
Exhibition Info
Venue: Passaggi Arte Contemporanea, via Garofani, 14, 56125 Pisa
Tel.:+ 39 050 8667468 - Mobile: +39 338 35 25 236
[email protected]
Title of the exhibition: Riflessi da un luogo invisibile [Reflections from an Invisible Place]
Curated by: Arabella Natalini
Duration: from 30 October 2015 to 23 January 2016
Hours: Tue to Sat from 4pm to 8 pm, and by appointment.
Press office: Silvia Pichini, [email protected], mobile: + 39 347 45 36 136

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