AL FRESCO – Al-Alban, Bailey, Erspamer, Iannelli, Kelly, McCoy, Murray, Thone, Warner.

Curated by Tatyana Valova assisted by  Ivana Malvoni and Lisa Torquato

Students: Rashed Al-Alban, Kennedy Bailey, Mirko Erspamer, Michael Iannelli, Mary Kelly, Casey McCoy, McKenna Murray, Madlyn Thone, Madeline Warner.

April 2 – May 6, 2014

Opening on April 2 at Ganzo

11 works made in  techniques such as fresco and sgraffito by the FUA Fresco Painting class, by professor Paride Moretti.

School has always been a place where you are bounded by some rules and restrictions; yet, it is also a place to create and express oneself. In an art school, students are encouraged to share ideas and develop specialized skills, to learn the rules and, often to break them, especially if the teachers are open to broadening the horizons of an everyday teaching vision. All these premises will be shown at the exhibition Al fresco in Ganzo, the creative lab of Florence University of the Arts, starting on April 2, 2014 by students of FUA Fresco Painting class under the guidance of professor Paride Moretti.

The controversial point of this exhibition starts from its very beginning – the title. It goes without saying that it springs from the technique the art on display is produced, the fresco. The Italian language allows us to play with this word. In Italian affresco is a fresco by itself, while the Italian expression al fresco means “in jail”. It is natural therefore to question the use of these terms and expressions. At first sight, it may seem that there is not a real connection between them; however, fresco is a kind of painting made on the wall where the wall becomes an irreplaceable material element of the artwork. At the same time walls are parts of any prison. Artists express themselves by painting on a wall. And what do prisoners do when they have to spend many hours, years, or even decades, staying in one room where there is nothing except for the walls? They express their anger, fury, expectations, hopes and fears on the only thing they have, a wall. It will be interesting to see how the students interpret the merging of these separate yet close conceptual areas and how their individual ideas of the subject will be portrayed.

One essential point is the visual rendering of the idea. Students are quite free in their creative work, while the professor plays an important role to guide students in a clear direction. For this particular project, they have been given a lot of flexibility by professor Moretti. An exhibition that wants to embrace subjects and feelings as far as jail, walls, angers, and hopes, can include works which interpret these topics in many different ways. The students have had the option to work on their own piece, or in group, similarly to a Renaissance workshop. The walls for them are not only surfaces to paint on, but a kind of mirror that saves memories and moments of life. At this point, of their life in Italy.

To see the complete photo-report by Lama Kaddura, click here.