By Magazzino Italian Art

Curated by Vittorio Calabrese and Chiara Mannarino

A special exhibition of new work created by eight New York-based Italian artists—including Alessandro Teoldi, Andrea Mastrovito, Beatrice Scaccia, Danilo Correale, Davide Balliano, Francesco Simeti, Luisa Rabbia, and Maria D. Rapicavoli—during the global quarantine. Originally launched as part of the Magazzino da Casa’s digital program, Homemade culminated with an in-person exhibition of the final artworks created over the project’s two-month duration. Curated by Director Vittorio Calabrese with Chiara Mannarino, the approximately 30 works on view demonstrate how participating artists pushed their practice during this period, using new methods and materials, and interrogating new issues—from concrete casts that explore polarized concepts, such as connection and separation, to large-scale painting that investigates cosmic natures. The exhibition presents these works alongside a selection of previous projects by the artists to shed light on their broader creative practices. Taken together, Homemade serves as a testament to the power and resilience of art and its ability to connect us all. 

HomemadeMagazzino Italian Art

Installation view of Andrea Mastrovito's works for HomemadeMagazzino Italian Art

At the end of May, Andrea Mastrovito and his family left their New York home to return to the artist’s birthplace—Bergamo—which has been tremendously affected by the Coronavirus pandemic.

Andrea, 367 Cumberland Street (2020) by Andrea MastrovitoMagazzino Italian Art

For Homemade, the duration of which marked the two months leading up to their departure, Mastrovito recorded the environment in which they experienced the quarantine together.

Francesca, 367 Cumberland Street (2020) by Andrea MastrovitoMagazzino Italian Art

Using an intimate frottage technique, Mastrovito archived his domestic space by creating pencil rubbings of the household objects that filled his home. Over the course of the project, he combined these drawings into three life-size collages of his wife, child, and self.

Mattia, 367 Cumberland Street (2020) by Andrea MastrovitoMagazzino Italian Art

Mastrovito carefully selected the items he used to form these portraits in order to authentically represent himself and his family through the articles that best define them and their lives at home.

Picasso/Mary Poppins (2020) by Andrea MastrovitoMagazzino Italian Art

Design e Comunicazione Visiva/Triumphs and Laments (2020) by Andrea MastrovitoMagazzino Italian Art

The Magic Grinder/Solid Chips Uncoated (2020) by Andrea MastrovitoMagazzino Italian Art

Installation view of Davide Balliano's works for Homemade, Magazzino (2020)Magazzino Italian Art

The use of color was a threshold that Balliano was, from the very beginning, hesitant to conceptually cross. However, creating his colorful studies allowed him to embrace the unknown and to understand his own practice with newfound clarity.

No title (2020) by Davide BallianoMagazzino Italian Art

No title (2020) by Davide BallianoMagazzino Italian Art

No title (2020) by Davide BallianoMagazzino Italian Art

His experience of having to carefully determine the balance between various hues inspired him to create a large-scale painting that celebrates the amalgamation of all colors: white.

No title (2020) by Davide BallianoMagazzino Italian Art

No title (2020) by Davide BallianoMagazzino Italian Art

After almost two months, Balliano returned to his characteristic mode of making with enlightened perspective and insight.

UNTITLED_176 (2020) by Davide BallianoMagazzino Italian Art

This final work metaphorically unifies Balliano’s numerous studies and represents just how illuminating the process of creating them has been.

Installation view of Alessandro Teoldi's project for Homemade (2020) by Alessandro TeoldiMagazzino Italian Art

Alessandro Teoldi explores themes of tenderness, intimacy, and care through intricate, large-scale collages.

Untitled (Delta, Norwegian, COPA, Lufthansa, Thomas Cook Airlines, Hawaiian and Iberia) (2020) by Alessandro TeoldiMagazzino Italian Art

He has, most recently, united plane blankets—which he manipulates into forms of human figures—in various combinations to create textile works that capture ambiguously motivated and fleeting moments of contact and touch.

In this time of global pandemic—during which our ways of connecting with one another have been forced to adapt and transform—Teoldi’s choice in material, which recalls the journeys we take and the distances we are willing to travel to be with loved ones, takes on entirely new significance.

Untitled (hug II, II, III, IV) (2020) by Alessandro TeoldiMagazzino Italian Art

For Homemade, Teoldi returned to these familiar subjects in a very different way. Using a variety of paper types—from old photograph paper to the encasings of “fette biscottate” (traditional Italian breakfast biscuits)—he created a series of collages depicting figures in a state of embrace or longing.

Once completed, he covered them with fresh, homemade concrete—one of the most foundational materials for home construction. Its heavy weight and liquid consistency destroyed the paper constructions while simultaneously assuming their unique imprint.

Teoldi’s final four bas-reliefs memorialize instances of human contact, which have become increasingly foreign during the quarantine, and serve as poetic meditations on what builds connection, comfort, and home.

Installation view of Maria D. Rapicavoli's works for Homemade (2020-07-09/2020-09-07)Magazzino Italian Art

Rapicavoli’s work explores conditions and experiences of power, alienation, and displacement through a critique of economic and political systems. However, having to adjust to life under quarantine and reckon with the unprecedented nature of our current moment, Rapicavoli chose to examine the ambiguities, fears, and uncertainties accompanying this time through photography and a series of written reflections.

Reminder Reminder (2020) by Maria D. RapicavoliMagazzino Italian Art

At the beginning of the project, she focused on life outside of her apartment by taking photographs of the unusual compositions she came across in her neighborhood. Most notable was the immense pile of glass shards she encountered outside of a broken storefront window.

Over time, she began taking photos inside of her apartment, turning her camera lens to the remnants of all the wine glasses she broke in quarantine along with the sunbeams that entered her bedroom every afternoon. In an effort to understand new rhythms of time, she divided her reflections into chapters.

If I Am In Pieces Is It Easier To See? (2020) by Maria D. RapicavoliMagazzino Italian Art

In the end, Rapicavoli returned to where her project began, creating an exact replica of the broken storefront window using glazed white ceramic. Through hours of meticulous molding and modeling, she was able to meditate on her own experience of having to rebuild and reimagine her current reality in this exceptional time.

Untitled (2020) by Danilo CorrealeMagazzino Italian Art

After what was meant to be a weekend-long respite on an island in Massachusetts turned into several months of isolation in the company of a small group of artists due to the announcement of the U.S. lockdown, Danilo Correale found himself far from his New York home and studio.

He began Homemade under these circumstances, having only the minimal possessions he packed with him— pens, printer paper, and his laptop—as his artistic materials. Out of his comfort zone, Correale turned inward, choosing to examine themes that are familiar to his practice from a more personal and vulnerable perspective.

Throughout the project’s duration, Correale created an ongoing and extensive list of his artistic projects and endeavors—realized, unrealized, yet to be conceptualized, or still in progress—at first through digital renderings of this data and later by incorporating his own hand into the work.

His shift towards manual labor allowed him to meditate deeply on the notion of time, especially as it relates to completing an artwork in this unprecedented moment. Through a time- and labor-intensive process involving rigorous and patient transcription of the typographic characters comprising his lengthy inventory, Correale charted and reflected upon his past, present, and future. His body informs the scale of the final work, in acknowledgement of its deeply personal nature.

Installation view of Francesco Simeti's works for HomemadeMagazzino Italian Art

For Homemade, Simeti chose to investigate these themes through a previously unexplored medium. Over the course of two months, he created a series of animations that expose how nature emerged as humans retreated indoors during the pandemic.

Unrelenting (2020) by Francesco SimetiMagazzino Italian Art

As we watch intertwined webs of foliage appear from both horizontal and vertical perspectives, we are reminded of our everyday experience of watching nature gradually come into view during the quarantine. His inclusion of music composed by his dear friend and collaborator Chris Cerrone adds an element of magical mystique that mirrors our wonder for nature while simultaneously introducing an eerie and alarming call to action.

Mandrake (2018) by Francesco SimetiMagazzino Italian Art

Francesco Simeti’s expansive practice includes explorations of the tensions between human beings and the natural world. These inquiries are embedded in his ceramic works, which assume the form of lush and abundant tangles of plant life.

The Wilds XVII (2017) by Francesco SimetiMagazzino Italian Art

Though their exteriors look inviting at first, their hardened form inevitably belies their initially welcoming appearance, alerting us to the reality that their seemingly soft leaves are, in fact, sharp and spiky.

Palmata (2019) by Francesco SimetiMagazzino Italian Art

By illuminating this strain between the natural and artificial, Simeti asks his audience to reconsider its relationship to non-human life—in particular, its role in causing harm.

The Wilds I (2013) by Francesco SimetiMagazzino Italian Art

Chorus, Luisa Rabbia, 2020, From the collection of: Magazzino Italian Art
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During this time of extended isolation, Luisa Rabbia has approached Homemade as an opportunity to remind us of what truly brings and keeps us together. She began by creating a series of small works on paper and canvas that feature compositions of abstracted and intertwined human figures which, together, reveal intimate experiences of physical touch. Towards the end of the project, Rabbia set out to create a large-scale painting that suits the cosmic nature of the themes she explores.

Her final work, Chorus, profoundly investigates human connection. By meditating on the belly button—a body part shared by all humans and a continual reminder of our connection to past and future generations—Rabbia looks beyond superficial means of being in touch and instead probes the more natural ways in which we are all interconnected. She incorporates her hand in the work—leaving its traces through fingerprints that mark the wet paint—and strips away at the coats that comprise the canvas’ surface—a process that mirrors our need to metaphorically remove the layers that obscure our deepest forms of relation. In its depiction of overlapped figures that radiate luminous yellows from the areas in which they intersect, Chorus illustrates how a group of distinct voices can create harmonious song through unity.

Installation view of Beatrice Scaccia's works for Homemade (2020-07-09/2020-09-07)Magazzino Italian Art

Beatrice Scaccia had been working on her My Hope Chest painting right before the beginning
of Homemade.

My Hope Chest My Hope Chest (2020) by Beatrice ScacciaMagazzino Italian Art

Since she first started studying art history, she has been captivated by hairstyles and their symbolic meaning—embodying various dualities, including power and its limits, as well as expression and suppression.

Her infatuation led her to accumulate large amounts of doll hair for use in future artistic projects. Interested in exploring the hoarding phenomenon that developed at the start of the pandemic, Scaccia turned to her own collecting habits. This painting initiated an inquiry that would continue throughout the duration of Homemade and lead her to venture into an entirely new medium.

She Hoarded Her Intention (2020) by Beatrice ScacciaMagazzino Italian Art

Long nurturing a desire to work three-dimensionally, Scaccia created a stop motion animation film for Homemade. Over the course of two months, she incrementally covered a hand-crafted bust with the various items she accrued over the years, including her copious quantities of doll hair. With every addition, Scaccia considered how the things we choose to shield ourselves with can shape or conceal our identity. Using a chalkboard backdrop to portray hand-drawn text and incorporating footage capturing evidence of hoarding in her neighborhood, Scaccia calls attention to the tragedy of waste and notes that, while objects may provide a semblance of comfort and protection, nature will always reign supreme

Reflections on Homemade: Artist Conversations. Webinar 1.Magazzino Italian Art

Reflections on Homemade: Artist Conversations. Webinar 2.Magazzino Italian Art

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