Nicola Samorì

March 18, 2016 – April 30, 2016

Via Sforza Cesarini, 43A-44 Rome

Monitor is delighted to announce its first solo show devoted to the work of Nicola Samorì (Forlì 1977).

Through the various paintings, sculptures and installations created specially for the show, Samorì expects to transcend the visual relation between viewers and works, involving the public in a deeply physical experience.

With their masterful fusion between Renaissance or Baroque dramatic intensity and the uncontrolled essence of Informal, Samorì’s paintings and sculptures document the persistence of an ‘un-actual’ trace within the contemporary. Thanks to his entirely personal way of interacting with the entity of the museum, Samorì in fact stretches the syntax of a vast repertoire of works almost to breaking point, after which he documents their vulnerability by sabotaging their codes with either heavy ‘incursions’ or minimal adjustments.

Each of Samorì’s compositions is characterised by a systematic, ceremonial deconstruction, a mechanism able to delegitimize academism in the shortest possible time lapse. A number of different possible approaches underline this artist’s personal dialogue with his works but all issue from a nucleus derived from the degeneration of a form project that is then expounded on with surgical precision. In some cases the viewer traces the artist’s match against an obstacle that, to be overcome, requires rigour and perseverance.

The new body of works that Nicola Samorì has completed for his first solo show at Monitor documents an ‘involuntary chorus’, an underlying correlation that is stated piece by piece, with subjects/objects prey to a kind of infective urgency. It is as if the insistent osmosis that breathes life into the body of these works obliges them each to imitate the substance of the other, or deprive the other of it, in a continuous interweaving between painting and sculpture and vice versa. Within this chorus a “Stanza dei fuochi” (room of fires) and a “Stanza delle crisi” (room of crises) contend for the same matter of which each is made up.

The depicted elements outline a small Martyropolis, taking on and developing a broad spectrum of iconography offered by Eternal Rome. St Peter is thus thrown into a large, arched canvas, seemingly containing his own weight behind an outstretched arm, an excess of peeling paint with the fluids of Rubens emerging beneath his opaque skin. It is the weight that speaks here, in the form of a crepuscular image reverberating at the miniature – at times minimal – discretion of the smaller boards nearby; feminine apparitions of a supremely subtle solemnity. Among these, the Traspirazione della Vergine (Transpiration of the Virgin), unleashes an optical conversion of a Flemish Madonna within a head hidden by a burqa, portrayed via the flaking of the painted surface that reveals the brown of the board beneath it rather than with a predictable painting of the subject itself.

The processual element features also in La Madonna dello zucchero (The Sugar Madonna), which introduces a new compositional aspect in the form of the fresh skin of the face redrawn by the traces left involuntarily by an insect. The insect has thus upset the Memlian order with its unpredictable embroidery, echoing Huberman’s thoughts on accidental forms. Peter’s gesture is echoed by other ‘falls’, such as that of the skin of St Bartholomew after Luca Giordano (Ascia romana), which is verticalised, despoiled of landscape and ‘depopulated’. The martyr literally opens up under the scalpel, and the Classical sculpture at his feet required by traditional iconography is projected outwards, a timeless head carved from a fossilised tree trunk, with large sections of petrified bark still remaining. This agony is surveyed by another work in wood, a pole with the features of the Risorto, whose vertical symmetry has once again been broken up by the work of insects devouring the sides during their feasting on the softer tissues of the walnut wood. Even in L’estasi trascendentale dell’idolo anemico (The Transcendental Ecstasy of the Anaemic Idol) in white Carrara marble, the punctured surface resembles the irregular work of stone-eating bacteria.

Just as in his paintings, Samorì develops his other works by subtraction –‘burrowings’ that breathe new life into his models. In his sculptures, he seems to explore the idea of spontaneity by exploiting the natural defects of the surface he is developing, and on its lost integrity – from the deformities of fossilised wood to the patterns within a tree trunk eaten by larvae, the imitation of a chink in a stone, or the interpretation of geodes.

Opening March 18th | h. 6,30 – 9 pm

Palazzo Sforza Cesarini
via Sforza Cesarini 43a
00186 Roma
T: +39 0639378024

Opening times
Tuesday – Saturday
1 – 7 pm