Glaucocamaleo

Luca Trevisani

06.12.2014 - 22.12.2014

Pisztory Palace, Štefánikova 25, Bratislava

curatore: Lýdia Pribišová

foto: Adam Šakový

Luca Trevisani’s project consists of the film Glaucocamaleo /2013/, presented in the cinema Film Europe, and a solo exhibition in the spaces on the ground floor of Pistori Palace in Bratislava.

Decay and the subsequent emergence of a new order. The works of Luca Trevisani interpret the laws of the natural sciences. He works with both organic and inorganic materials that are in a constant cycle; he is not interested in the given state of things, but in the process of their transformation. The space he operates in is a provisional one and instability his tool. The individual elements of Trevisani’s works mutually re-group. Many objects reappear in several of his compositions; we rediscover them in his photographs and prints, or in simple photocopies. The element frequently at the center of his attention is water, capable of evoking cyclical movement. Alchemical processes, the transmutation of material from one group to another, transformations of identity; from the Heracletian "panta rei" to Lavoisier's postulate - one of the cornerstones of physics – that "nothing is created or destroyed, but only changes from one form to another." His works are open-ended and apparent incompleteness is an important component of his artistic strategy. In the work of Luca Trevisani we can identify various points of departure: Epicurus, Euclides, Leibniz, Foster Wallace or Bruce Nauman.

Luca Trevisani’s exhibition is composed of the two videos Platinoiridio /2008/ and A tribute to Geoffrey Nathaniel Joseph Pyke, /2014/, a site-specific installation and a series of prints on UV-irradiated aluminium titled Placet Experiri /2014/.

The main protagonist in the video Platinoiridio obsessively measures the space around him, unsuccessfully trying to dominate it. The video is a metaphor for the human desire for a generally applicable order, for rules, which, however, do not operate perfectly. In 1899 a rod made from an alloy of platinum and iridium was made as the prototype for the standard meter and kilogram. It is considered the international standard of these measures and is kept in the International Bureau of Weights and Measures / Bureau International des Poids et Mesures in Sèvres, France. Iridium is the metal most resistant to corrosion and, according to some studies, is of extraterrestrial origin, since it rarely occurs in nature, but is contained in greater concentrations in asteroids. Based on this knowledge, Luca Trevisani created a projection of the human desire to dominate infinite space.

The author considers the Placet Experiri series as a certain cultivation, as the result of the process of freezing a processional sculpture by means of photography.

In the video A tribute to Geoffrey Nathaniel Joseph Pyke, Luca Trevisani worked with crystalline structures created as a result of an intentionally flawed technical intervention into video. The artist dedicated the piece to the journalist and inventor Geoffrey Nathaniel Joseph Pyke (1893-1948), the inventor of the material pykrete, consisting of sawdust and ice, which is more resistant to melting than ice alone. Trevisani’s site-specific installation is an open, variable structure, reminiscent of a laboratory, in which, alongside physical and chemical reactions such as crystallization, decay and melting, chance constitutes a creative component.

The title of the film Glaucocamaleo /2013/ comes from the 1961 book Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut, in which a scientist discovers "ice-nine", a microparticle that is capable of crystallizing, and can start a chain reaction with disastrous consequences – freezing all the water on Earth. In the book the cycle of mutation of water in nature is suspended. That situation is the starting point for the film Glaucocamaleo.

Trevisani created a set of ice forms in which various physical processes occur, induced by releasing water containing various compounds into an ice system. Alongside the ice structures, he designed apparatuses in which he observed the different ice melting processes. The coexistence of sounds and forms which vary in the process of the flow and gradual transformation of the water disrupt the boundaries between forms and create an integral environment in constant transformation. The footage in the film is taken in various natural environments – glaciers and ice caves. The unifying element carried from one environment to another consists of a mobile laboratory in a van. In this intimate, clinical environment, scaled-down experiments take place that are subsequently applied in nature.

Glaucocamaleo is a hybrid of various genres: video, documentary and sci-fi. The film was created in a dialogue with the scientist Kary Mullis, one of the most controversial scientific authorities of the present day, who in 1993 won the Nobel Prize for Chemistry, and who has often expressed skepticism about the existence of global warming. The scientist is also the narrator of the film. The work arose on a number of sites in Italy, various European countries and the United States, for example in Casa Saldarini, a symbol of radical organic architecture in Italy, in the largest European glacier in Furca Pass in Switzerland, in Skagen at the northernmost tip of Denmark where the North Sea and the Baltic Sea meet and on the shore in Newport Beach where Kary Mullis lives.

With financial support of The Ministry of Culture of The Slovak Republic and of Italian Cultural Institut in Bratislava.

Luca Trevisani (born in 1979 in Verona, lives alternately in Berlin, Milan and Rome) deals in his work with natural processes and the fusion of art with various scientific disciplines. He exhibits in Italy and abroad. Solo Exhibitions /selection/: 2013 MACRO, Museum of Contemporary Art, Rome, Italy; 2011 ReMap 3 Festival of Contemporary Art, Athens, Greece; 2010 NIMK Nederlands Instituut vor Mediakunst, Amsterdam; 2010 MACRO, Museum of Contemporary Art, Rome, Italy, Museum Carlo Zauli, Faenza, Italy, Künstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin, Germany; 2005 GAMeC Gallery of Contemporary and Modern Art, Bergamo, Italy; 2004 Viafarini, Milan, Italy. Group exhibitions /selection/: 2013 Art on TV: ikono On Air Festival, ikono, Berlin, Germany; 2012 MUSMA Museum of Contemporary sculpture, Matera, Italy; 2012 MAXXI Museum of XXI Century Art, Rome; 2012 Künstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin, Germany; 2010 Stelline Foundation, Milan, Italy; 2010 Arnaldo Pomodoro Foundation, Milan, Museum of Contemporary Art in Trento and in Rovereto, Italy.

Awards:
2013 Moroso Award for Contemporary Art - New York Prize; 2010 New York Prize of the Italian Cultural Institute in New York; 2009 Emerging Talents Award, Palazzo Strozzi Foundation; 2007 Premio Furla, Bologna.