Bagnante 2000 - 2020
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- About the artist
I started painting on steel with the aid of oxidation in the summer of 2012, and since then the concepts of “time”, “will” and “chance” have been crucial to the development of my research.
The first phase of my work requires the welding of steel plates followed by their oxidization with water and salt (no chemical acids) in the shape of the figures I plan to represent. Then I proceed to painting with oil colours, sometimes adding etching parts and bitumen, and protecting the work with several layers of varnishes and wax.
Like other artists I try to control the technique in all its details but, since the will to control also extends to my everyday life, I consider my work of painting on steel a form of therapy. Inevitably, in some phases I am compelled to accept that the process is beyond my control. This process usually occurs in the design of the areas that will be oxidized and, above all, in the evolution that these oxidations will cause on the metal and under the painted surface after the final phase of varnishing.
The artwork’s evolutionary characteristic reminds me of life: we are born, we grow up and we become mature. All along, unpredictability plays a determinant role especially in the effects of the decisions we take, and as it follows us towards the final stages of our lives.
Art is historically considered eternal, but these paintings underscore art’s metamorphic nature. Here, we witness artwork as it is developing, shifting, and in some cases, mutating into other forms, much like the elements of nature on the planet.
It’s no coincidence that my subjects are never smiling. They do not pretend to pose in fictitious scenes. Rather, they are real people harboring or working through real emotions, dilemmas and uncertainities. While each subject is a different person (mostly friends or acquaintances), they mirror constellations of humanity in tiny particles. In doing so, they feature many of the commonalities shared among human beings across culture, language, gender, and race.