2018 Mantra

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Mantra

Ferruccio Ascari here returns to using the technique of fresco transferred to canvas, typical of his painted works. But there is an element of innovation: the element of writing, previously used episodically in the fabric of his works, becomes the key element of this work, which is also a text.[read more=”Read More”less=”Read Less”]The range of colours is limited to just two: a very dark green for the almost-black background, and gold for the words of the text flowing across twenty-seven canvases, hung not in a line but in a pattern that recalls a musical score. At first glance, the text seems unfathomable, but as the title suggests, it is a fragment of a mantra of Vedic tradition. The text is a threshold to cross, an enigma to decipher in order to reveal its content of truth. Mantra is part of a cycle of compositions the artist has been working on since 2017. They all fall within the same province: a spiritual tension, a questioning of the sense of our being in the world in this historical period of radical transformations. The sense of these works that refer to different religious traditions lies in their quest for a common core, able to preserve us from hate and intolerance. The message contained in Mantra goes in this direction, but not only. The artist’s formal choices are in themselves a declaration of intent: the drastic reduction in figurative elements as well as the gold and the dark green make this work an object of meditation with a contemporary slant and with an implicit reference – also via Malevich’s Black Square – to the icon and its theological as well as artistic significance, its being a ‘presence’ and not just a simple artistic depiction.
[BIAS 2018 – Biennale Internazionale di Arte Contemporanea Sacra delle Religioni e Credenze dell’Umanità (Padiglione Filosofico) – MUSEO RISO Cappella dell’Incoronazione, Palermo][/read]

Mantra. Fresco transferred to canvas, gold and iron, 27 canvases, 30×40 cm each, 2018

2017 Ex Voto

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Ex voto

Ex-voto 1, Ex-voto 2, Ex-voto 3, the three works located in the church of San Bernardino alle Ossa in the context of the personal exhibition of Ferruccio Ascari “Silenzio”, recall the authentic ex-voto offerings covering the walls in front of the ossuary. Here, the intentional choice of the artist has been to integrate these “soft voiced” works in continuity with this “special” place.[read more=”Read More”less=”Read Less”]This also permitted to avoid any overlap with the mood coming from this place. The three works intertwine a dialogue with the authentic ex-votos, thus suggesting to think about the likeness, but also on the difference, between the two: apart from a certain formal reference with those artifacts, which don’t pretend to be anything else than signs of devotion for some received blessing, these three works are situated in a different horizon, that of art as an interrogation, as the search for a sense and also as creation of a space further than that of the daily existence.[/read]

Ex Voto I. Perforated alcantara paper, approx. 40×48 cm, 2017 
Ex Voto II. Plate of perforated graphite, 
approx. 17×28 cm, 2017 
Ex Voto III. Foil of perforated rubber, 
approx. 38×58 cm, 2017 

Ex Voto I. Carta alcantara traforata, circa 40x48 cm, 2017 Ex Voto II. Lastra di grafite traforata, circa 17x28 cm, 2017 Ex Voto III. Lamina di gomma traforata, circa 38x58 cm, 2017

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2017 Rumore

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Rumore
[Video]

The seven minutes of Rumore (Noise) simply present, frame after frame, a barefoot man walking through the city centre of Milan without ever stopping. The flow of images is, however, constantly ‘disturbed’ by other images that are overlaid, a film-within-a-film that interrupts the first one.[read more=”Read More”less=”Read Less”]This element of discontinuity consists of unexpected intercuts that assault the viewer with images of poor down-and-outs, homeless people and beggars. The unfiltered parallel world of marginalization is revealed through the raw, aggressive noise of the city. Instead, the uninterrupted walking of the key figure through the crowd is accompanied by a particularly alienating soundtrack, taken from ‘Vibractions’, a sound installation by the artist dating from 1978. We never see the face of the barefoot man. During his wanderings, he enters three churches, and the noise of the world goes in with him. Each time a churchgoer is disturbed during their silent contemplation, and they shush him. Forced to leave, he returns to the outside world, the noise following him like a burden he carries. The last scene shows him walking away, disappearing into the sky. His identity is never revealed. The whole framework of the video develops as an investigation of an unknown person whose wanderings – in a crowded Milan, full of people shopping, everyone with their mobile phones ready to snap a photo or a selfie – are a disruptive element. The ‘request for sense’ that Rumore puts forward is urgent, forcing the viewer to reflect. The intercuts of the marginalized world disturb our daily lives, casting a crude light on a reality that cannot be ignored.[/read]

Rumore, 8’03”, 2017
Rumore, 8’03”, 2017 (teaser 0’26”)

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2007 apparente

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07

Apparente

Apparente (Apparent), a work made with 36 panes of glass arranged on six overlaid registers. The white silhouettes that emerge in each are captured as if in flight,[read more=”Read More”less=”Read Less”]blocked for an instant in a sort of snapshot that conveys only a partial image. As the title suggests, in its etymological sense — apparent is that which is evident, manifest — this is something that seems to appear for a fraction of a second in our visual field, imprinted on the retina, and then vanishes due to the force of an unstoppable movement.[/read]

Apparente. Enamel on glass, 36 panel of glass 25×35 cm each, 2007 [DG0076]

2003 Cuori (Ex Voto) III

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Cuori
(Ex Voto) III

Cuori (Ex Voto). Curcuma on paper, 50×70 cm, 2003 [DG0052]

Cuori (Ex Voto). Curcuma on paper, 50×70 cm, 2003 [DG0053]

Cuori (Ex Voto). Curcuma on paper, 35×50 cm, 2003 [DG0054]

Cuori (Ex Voto). Curcuma on paper, 35×50 cm, 2003 [DG0055]

Cuori (Ex Voto). Curcuma on paper, 50×70 cm, 2003 [DG0026]

2001 L’ordine dura un istante III

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L’Ordine Dura
Un Istante III

L’Ordine Dura Un Istante. Perforated paper, detail, 2001 [TR0006]

L’Ordine Dura Un Istante. Perforated paper, 280×140 cm, 2001 [TR0001]

L’Ordine Dura Un Istante. Perforated paper, 280×140 cm, 2001 [TR0019]

L’Ordine Dura Un Istante. Perforated paper, 280×100 cm, 2001 [TR0020]

L’Ordine Dura Un Istante. Perforated paper, 280×100 cm, 2001 [TR0021]

L’Ordine Dura Un Istante. Perforated paper, 280×100 cm, 2001 [TR0022]

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Contact

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    Biography ENG

    Biography
    Ferruccio Ascari (b. 1949) lives and works in Milan. After his degree in Philosophy in 1973, he became interested in Eastern thought and particularly the Yogic tradition, in a way that has deeply informed his artistic practice. In the mid Seventies, while traveling frequently to India to expand his knowledge of the discipline, he debuted as an artist—spanning a wide array of media, from painting and sculpture to site-specic installations at the crossover of visual and time-based arts (music, dance and performance). During those years, the artist’s work gained international attention and he took part in prominent exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale and the Biennale des Jeunes of Paris. From the mid Eighties, he dedicated himself mainly to painting and sculpture, exploring the properties and transformations of materials, and particularly to the technique of the fresco transferred onto canvas. In recent years, Ascari’s latest series of works—including charcoal drawings, perforated paper works, and sculptures in iron and terracotta—testify to a shift from an anthropocentric perspective to one that embraces nature’s forces and cycles, pursuing an investigation on the origin of form and the perennial dialectics of permanence and change. Ferruccio Ascari’s work has been exhibited internationally in public and private institutions, such as Galleria d’Arte Moderna, Rome; Rotonda della Besana, Milan; Palazzo dei Priori and Pinacoteca, Volterra; Castel Sant’ Elmo, Naples; Symposium international d’Art Performance, Lyon; Lenbachhaus, Munich; International Biennal of Graphic Art, Ljubljana; Museum der Stadt, Waiblingen, Museo d’Arte Moderna, Ascona.