Sergio Zanichelli

Presence – Absence

I can use the term, “dis-location” to describe with just one word the work of Oscar Piovosi, characterized by the expressive term “presence-absence”,  in which characters seem to act outside the frame, and showing absence of relationship among themselves. Their behaviour is an absence-condition of the depicted scene. It is a non figurative conceptual abstraction, determined by the way in which Piovosi depicts the characters, who always appear looking at a thought and not an action. The issue of presence-absence is recurrent in painting, specially in the surrealist metaphysical research of R.Magritte, who takes the external space within the internal and the internal space to the external through the fantastic optical illusion. I could name as well another artistic work of the ‘70s by Claudio Parmiggiani: by moving the objects (frames) from a context, traces remain on walls and so the absence of the canvas becomes a new presence. A.Agazzani, in his wonderful essay for the presentation of the painting series of Oscar Piovosi: “UP- a journey with them”, recalls the concept of the absence through the measurable dimension of time whether it is the present , past or future, therefore unclassifiable and without dates. We cannot talk exclusively of a suspension in time through a metaphysical representation of the daily routine, but the perception is such that the scenography of each work, almost always monochromatic (clear and dark blue) is never in relationship with the gestures of the characters, who seem to be leaving the frame of the picture.
If we pay attention to the faces of Piovosi’s characters, their gaze is almost never towards the spectator but to an undefined “out of frame”, almost as a perspective that divides the picture in two: the statics of the scenography and the dynamic tension expressed by the characters.  A communicative silence and a lack of dialogue among them reminds the fantastic lyricism in the art of A. Sughi.If painting, in its expressive aspects, depends of its own time, then Piovosi’s work expresses in a straightforward way the behaviour and actions of our society. In a globalisation context, relationships -specially interpersonal ones- seem to be expressed through virtual relations that make use of technological communication tools, as iphones, tablets, cell phones and computers, taking over direct contact among people.
Piovosi’s art is expressed through snap-shots of a journey in which characters grow apart from the context, looking for interpersonal relationships but lacking their own identity. They are a temporary presence that becomes only evanescent by Piovosi’s expressiveness and painting techniques, his unvaried chromatic tonalism that makes them almost absent from the scene. A fragmented representation of a journey where the spectator is taken into the canvas to reinforce the concept of loneliness, expectation, silence, awkwardness and research that people seem to feel in our times. A picture of the present that looks at the past through its figurative gesture, which is not in style but a very autonomous expressive language, therefore becoming immediately a feature of the author’s production. An author trying to talk to us through his magical painting gesture. E. Scanavino reminds us that art follows or precedes events, the artist is a mystic as he uses art to show his feelings and offer to the spectators the chance to observe them. Piovosi’s art needs to be observed, because being an artist is being the owner of dreams, and his dreams seem to become real in his snap-shots-paintings. The work in the series “Phone and… Distance” seem to take us to a completely unexpected dimension, F. Nietzche reminds us that “art is the union of two elements: a great realism and a great reality”;  Oscar Piovosi takes us to this fantastic journey between realism and reality with his depictions, participating in this specific circumstance.
An infinite journey, with the great expressive skill of Piovosi reminding us that “art must be for a world to come and not for the world as it is” (K. Klaus), thus it could be said that art does not teach anything, except for the meaning of life. The meaning of life is poetically expressed in Piovosi’s fantastic journey.

Sergio Zanichelli
“Phone and… Distanze” Galleria comunale L’Ottagono, Bibbiano RE, Febbraio 2015