Andrea Chisesi's tribute to Gabriele D'Annunzio and Michelangelo at Versiliana

Through Aug. 23, Villa La Versiliana in Marina di Pietrasanta is hosting an exhibition by Andrea Chisesi that pays homage to the connection between Gabriele D'Annunzio and Michelangelo.

Until next August 23, the Villa della Versiliana in Marina di Pietrasanta is hosting the exhibition Pietre della Memoria. Homage to the Kinsman, a solo show by artist Andrea Chisesi (Rome, 1972), curated by Marcella Damigella, and dedicated to the bond between Gabriele D’Annunzio and Michelangelo (whom the poet called “the Kinsman,” hence the title of the exhibition). An exhibition linked to the territory, then: from the quarries of Mount Altissimo, behind Pietrasanta, Michelangelo drew marble for some Medici commissions, while in the Versiliana park the Vate composed the sublime verses of La pioggia nel pineto.

The exhibition displays 41 previously unpublished paintings on canvas and 70 works on paper, arranged over thirteen rooms to evoke the relationship the artist and the poet. Among the works appear several “fusions,” a term the artist calls his technique, dictated by the grafting of painting and photography, and which here has as its subject several works by Michelangelo, as well as a portrait of Gabriele D’Annunzio. Then there are the “drippings” on Chisesi’s canvas, which make the image appear almost impalpable, in a combination of water and white color to create lines flow across the canvas creating a dense rhythmic pattern against the dark background.

“Andrea Chisesi,” says Alfredo Benedetti, president of the Festival della Versiliana, “is an artist of great value who impressed me from the first moment, and the works on display in this exhibition represent a combination of art, territory, and poetry in which our Festival fully recognizes itself. Gabriele d’Annunzio will be the common thread that will run through many of our events this year, including the laying of a bronze bust right in front of the Villa that hosted the Vate’s stays and a series of meetings curated by Giordano Bruno Guerri, a leading expert on D’Annunzio’s figure and work.”

“Chisesi’s poetics,” says curator Marcella Damigella, “is based on the extension of temporal connections and memory. This network of relationships binds the sensation of a continuous present, like the concept of relativity elaborated by Einstein, which we find in the artist’s canvases; in this sense, pictorial preparations can wait up to 10 years before finding the right image, and that is why he also paints several canvases at the same time, adding parts or denying others in search of a balance in perpetual becoming.”

At the Versiliana, Chisesi also previews the canvas Il Vate, which is a preview of Tempora Vatis, the new exhibition that the artist will soon dedicate to Gabriele d’Annunzio and which will be held at the Vittoriale in Gardone Riviera, on Lake Garda, at the invitation of President Giordano Bruno Guerri, who says: “the growing interest that Gabriele d’Annunzio arouses even in young and very talented artists (Andrea Chisesi has both characteristics) is proof that the Vate still speaks to the intelligence of the world, arouses emotions, awakens passions. With Chisesi’s work, moreover, the virtuous and natural link between Vittoriale degli Italiani and Versiliana is strengthened, benefiting the public above all.”

Image: Andrea Chisesi, The Vate, detail (2020; mixed media, 100 x 120 cm)

Andrea Chisesi's tribute to Gabriele D'Annunzio and Michelangelo at Versiliana
Andrea Chisesi's tribute to Gabriele D'Annunzio and Michelangelo at Versiliana

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