Protestant Madonnas. Third Act.

01/09 - 04/09
Ridotto e Foyer del Teatro Masini

Friday, September 02, 12 noon

Friday, September 02, 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Saturday, September 03, 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Sunday, September 04 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Protestant Madonnas: act three
In Paolo Porelli’s artistic research, the anthropomorphic figure constitutes a load-bearing theme, declined from time to time in the language of painting, drawing, and ceramic modeling, and placed at the center of a coherent operative methodology open to continuous sampling and reworking of reality.

On this principle of appropriation and manipulation insists the installation Protestant Madonnas: Act III, a project originally conceived by the artist in 2019 in the Dutch workshops of the European Ceramic Work Centre (EKWC), from which she derives both the distinctive orange glaze-the color of the royal House of Orange-and the titling, which is meant to cite the predominantly Protestant religion of the Netherlands, first installed at the Firma van Drie Gallery in Gouda, then at “Èthos Keramikos 2022” at the Palazzo Doebbing Museum in Sutri, and now installed in Faenza at the Ridotto of the Teatro Masini on the occasion of Argillà 2022.

The figure of the Madonna of Civitavecchia, the classic devotional simulacrum of the collective imagination, is taken out of its original context but in continuity with its character as a religious pilgrimage souvenir, as a miraculous icon of popular consumption, it appears reproduced and replicated in more than two hundred copies made by casting from a mold made on a
3d model.

A multitude of small sculptures whose identity oscillates between the poles of the “primary” and the “secondary”; in fact, the serial nature of the statuette is contradicted by the artist’s gestures, who acts on it through a series of interventions aimed at deforming its figure, coming to define one of the essential concepts of his work: the transformation of the stereotype into an archetype.

The closed and defined structure of the clay cast undergoes, at the moment of its plastic state, a complexity of cuts, punctures, deflagrations, but also combinations with other elements, in a proliferating process of successive states of disintegration that borders on abstraction. A metamorphic process that while destroying the form of the massified object, also primitizes it by revealing in the living ceramic material the individuality and great evocative power of archetypes.
Daniela Lotta

Paul Porelli