Gianni Caravaggio. Per analogiam
GAM, Turin
1 November 2023 - 17 March 2024

Gianni Caravaggio. Per analogiam

curated by Elena Volpato

GAM is happy to present the anthological exhibition of Gianni Caravaggio, whose work has been part of the museum’s collection since 2001. The exhibition consists of a nucleus of works created over a period of almost thirty years, from 1995 to the present. Five new works have been produced for the occasion.

One of these, a black marble leaf, entitled Quando nessuno mi vede(When nobody sees me), has been placed in the museum’s garden, in the shade of a bush. Within the museum itself, it is echoed by a green marble sculpture, mirroring the first, entitled Alla luce del sole(In daylight). Other works respond to each other along the way, drawing relationships and mirror images.

What emerges from the exhibition as a whole is the evocative power of the works and images which, in presenting themselves, always also refer back to further images and further meanings. The thought that recognises such cross-references is a thought per analogiam, by analogy, where every form is also a metaphor and where in every grain of matter one can recognise inscribed the emblem of the whole. Thought by analogy finds the memory of the infinite in the finite and the presence of what is above usin the smallest reality: among the works, visitors will find a cloth laid on the ground, a black blanket embroidered with white stars, arranged in a precise order. Their arrangement repeats the position of the constellations above Turin on 31 October at six o’clock in the evening, the day and time of the opening. Visitors will thus find themselves included in a perfect mirror image between the microcosm of embroidery and the sky above the museum.

The exhibition dedicated to the work of Gianni Caravaggio is the third in a cycle devoted to the work of Italian artists, each time juxtaposed with certain poetic reflections. The first exhibition in 2021 dealt with the thought of contradiction in a collective of five artists. The second considered metamorphic thinking, in the exhibition Hic sunt dracones of 2022, in a dialogue between an artist and a collective. In this solo exhibition, thinking by analogy is emphasised.

“In all these exhibitions, the area for reflection has been suggested by the expressive fabric of the exhibited works. We avoided presenting collectives of many artists to ensure that the theme did not overlap like an over-determined interpretative grid, but that it was the individual voice of the works that specified the paths of thought,” writes Elena Volpato. “Contradiction, metamorphosis and analogy are three territories of the indefinite that since its birth, philosophy has tried to expunge as aberrant forms, contrary to logic, rationality and deductive scientific thought, relegating them to the space of myth, symbolic and pre-scientific imagination. However, they represent not only some of the most natural processes by which the human mind gives meaning to the experience of the world, but are the very birthplace of poetic and artistic expression. In this sense, the paths developed in the three exhibitions are neither ‘themes’ nor ‘content’. They are the essential core of the nature of what we call art, whose authenticity lies in the forms of excess of meaning, in a beyond of meaning that goes beyond the plane of literal reality. The work of art lives in that space of expression that is ineffable yet necessary, and it is there that any reading or attempt at interpretation must try to encounter it.”

The exhibition is accompanied by the publication of a catalogue by Corraini Edizioni, with texts by Gianni Caravaggio, Elena Volpato and Federico Ferrari.

We would like to thank the Fondazione Guido ed Ettore De Fornaris and the Fondazione per l’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea CRT that have acquired some important works by Gianni Caravaggio for the GAM collection in recent years.

photo: Andrea Rossetti