ARP 2014 – NOT a LINE (a shadow line) – Paolo Baraldi a Cape Town

NOT a LINE (a shadow line)
A project by Paolo Baraldi selected for the Artistic Residency in Cape Town, South Africa, September 1- October 15 2014

The second edition of the Italo-South African artist’s residency exchange programme, facilitated by the Centro Luigi Di Sarro, Rome Italy and SMAC Art Gallery is marked by the arrival of Italian artist Paolo Baraldi in Cape Town. This follows on Paolo Bini’s visit to Cape Town from September to October2013 and South African artist Jake Aikman’s visit to Rome from May to June 2014. The Art Residency Project in South Africa is supported by the Consulate of Italy in Cape Town and the South African Embassy in Italy.

PAOLO BARALDI will be living and working on a specific project in Cape Town for a period of 30 days, after which , he will present a solo exhibition at SMAC Art Gallery in Cape Town. The project “Not A Line (a shadow line)” is an urban art intervention, focused on and projected onto the grid map of the new MY CITY bus route in Cape Town which has revolutionized public mobility in Cape Town. The title “Not a Line”, in its literal sense is relevant as the map or network of bus routes is far from linear. Baraldi also sees the movement of people as a form of human exchange. My City buses concurrently run through the well-known tourist spots, and the various suburbs of the city. Each bus stop will represents a new discovery and encounter for the artist with places, people, situations and images which he aims to reproduce in shadow form, creating a body of work which is both a social survey and study in urban ethnography.

Paolo Baraldi describes the project in Cape Town as follows:

Drawing, photography and engraving, are steps in a process of memorization: the faces, the lives, the lights and shadows of people who might meet in my experience will be stored and played back in memory.

This project fits into the body of work which I have been developing around public spaces over the last few years, in Bilbao (Spain), Tampere (Finland), Rome and Bergamo (Italy). Recurring themes and devices in my work are issues surrounding equality, as well as highlighting the acquiescence and complicity of the individual to change appearance within the public context, reflecting a specific visual and cultural aspect, which is provoked and encouraged through artistic intervention. The extent and nature of these interventions relaxed or intensified, depending on the context.”

The timing of the project coincides with various initiatives surrounding the City of Cape Town as World Design Capital for 2014, and the conceptual basis of the project aligns itself with this theme: artistic intervention and urban intervention are interrelated and connected as tools in contemporary new social planning. In recent years, there has been increased criticism and concern about commercial art practices and the art market which stifles creativity and authenticity in artistic production and there is a move back towards a vision of art which is more closely linked to the creative act, where the artist is an interlocutor, engaging with its audience, operating from within an open/public space.

Paolo Baraldi will also have a live workshop with the photography and graphics students from the “Ruth Prowse School of Art” based in Woodstock working with them at the near My City bus stop.

ARP 2014 – Jake Aikman art residency in Trevignano, Roma

Jake Aikman – Confini Velati
5 – 20 giugno 2014

Confini Velati is Jake Aikman’s first solo exhibition in Italy, following a residency in Trevignano Romano, Rome, facilitated by the Centro Luigi Di Sarro and his ARP – Art Residency Project. In 2009 Aikman participated in an official collateral exhibition to the 53rd Venice Biennale titled L’Anima dell’Acqua, presented at the prestigious Palazzo Ca’ d’Oro. Since then Aikman has presented three solo exhibitions and participated in numerous group and curated exhibitions both locally and internationally. His last exhibition, titled At the Quiet Limit, at SMAC Gallery received widespread critical acclaim and has cemented his reputation as one of South Africa’s top contemporary painters.

The veiling he deploys, gives an eerie sensation of the image (Nature) withdrawing, along with the sets of codes that were once embedded in our culture to assure us that our assumptions about the natural cycles of life and the existence of God were real and true. The irony is that this is conveyed by the tradition of easel painting, in a culture where nature has been reified and we are saturated with either glossy photographic images of ‘nature’ as something healthy and whole (and ultimately artificial) or sensationally cataclysmic images (documentaries) of our destructive exploitation of the ecological balance of the earth. Cunningly, painting is deployed to point to the gap between these two, contradictory sets of representation, leaving an uncanny sense of suspended meaning behind or in the veils of paint. (Julia Teale – extract from “At the quiet limit”, 2013)

In a time of rediscovery of classicism by young artists who return to investigate the image of reality through the reproduction of what surrounds them, the modernity of Aikman’s reflection on painting is not only the idea of a Nature ‘indifferent and selfstanding’ – almost calling back the vision of the philosophy par excellence of romantic poetry, Leopardi’s  poem “La Ginestra” – but in the meticulous research on technique of the color and the brush stroke – the use of oil painting is a further confirmation – showing in this how elusive can be the picture of reality that we try to capture in order to survive. That is the water of the sea , or rather that of the lake – in the case of the residence held in Trevignano , on the shores of Bracciano Lake , near Rome during which a series of works in the exhibition were made – the depth of the Aikman’s research always gives us the same question : can the artistic image to fully grasp the meaning of reality? how much of this is ‘ real ‘ and what is the projection of our expectations or fears ? (Alessandra Atti Di Sarro)

Jake Aikman - Confini Velati
Jake Aikman – ‘Confini Velati’ opening










ARP 2013 – Brink of the Ocean – Paolo Bini in Cape Town

Paolo Bini – Brink of the Ocean/Dinanzi all’Oceano

In collaboration with the Centro Di Sarro in Italy, the Italian Consulate in Cape Town and SMAC Art Gallery, Italian artist Paolo Bini presents his first South African solo exhibition entitled Brink of the Ocean/Dinanzi all’Oceano. Bini chosen by the Centro Di Sarro presents a new body of work completed during his one month residency, facilitated by the ARP – Art Residency Project, in Cape Town.
This exhibition will be hosted at the Provenance Auction House in Cape Town and runs concurrently with the program of the 13th Week of Italian Language in the World under the High Patronage of the President of the Italian Republic.
Brink of the Ocean/Dinanzi all’Oceano continues Bini’s experimentation with lines and colours while incorporating the unique South African geography that permeates into the fabric of this new body of work.
An artist deeply inspired by geographical forms, colour and abstract landscapes, Bini has acknowledged that the context of this residency has had “an important impact on the directions and gesture of [his] art,” remarking that he can see a transformative difference in what he has produced during this period.

In response to his new environment, Bini searched across his own personal colour palette and points of reference. Bini believes that colour directly reflects emotion, which he dubs as “emotional chromatics,” citing the influences of Neo-Expressionism and artists such as Julian Schnabel.
The effect and significance of rendering “the line” is part of the artist’s vision as well. Affected by the unique landscapes that he absorbs, from the winelands of Stellenbosch to the rugged terrain of Cape Point, Bini has created spontaneous paintings of a fluid and transcendent nature.
The materials used are of importance to Bini. Monochromatic and fluorescent paint is applied to various surfaces ranging from canvas to long stretches of paper tape on wooden board. When the tape is covered in acrylic, the work acquires a new dimension, highlighting a “transformation” of his materials. The artist feels free with paper as he finds the medium “poetic, soft yet textural, and able to take colour passionately,” creating abstract compositions with a vibrancy of colour and line in response to the landscape and sights he encountered in South Africa.



ARP 2011 – Somewhere on the Other Side – Marilena Vita in Cape Town



Erdmann Contemporary/thePhotographer’sGalleryZA – Cape Town

Opening Wednesday 5 October
6 – 31st October 2011

The Centro Luigi Di Sarro is going again to Cape town, with an exhibition by Marilena Vita. Somewhere on the other side forms part of an ongoing exchange program between Erdmann Contemporary and Centro Luigi Di Sarro in Rome. It has the patronage of Società Dante Alighieri, Cape Town Committee and the Italian Consulate in Cape Town. It also forms part of the cultural program of the Italian Week in South Africa.

ARP 2010 – Future Memories – Manfred Zylla in Rome

Future Memories – Manfred Zylla

19 ottobre – 18 novembre 2010

Manfred Zylla was born in Germany in 1939, living as a child through the ravages of World War II and its aftermath. Resident in South Africa since 1970, he became prominent as an artist highly critical of apartheid in the 1980’s with a stream of drawings, prints and paintings. These works are widely acknowledged as critical for understanding resistance art, an important chapter in South African art history.

The era of resistance art drew to a close in 1994, when South Africa held its first democratic elections. Zylla has, however, continued to work within a paradigm of social critique, producing works about globalisation and the social and political circumstances, forces and ills at play in South Africa and the world at large. In this respect, he has made works about pollution, global warming and natural resources, capitalism, crime, drugs, refuges, alternative energy and transport, attitudes towards disability, and Africa as a playground for the rich.
Zylla’s paintings are dealing with issues, which affect all of us –  says Heidi Erdmann, curator  – They tell the plight of the world, and point to Zylla’s strong concern with the destiny of humanity, the future of the planet and most importantly art as a tool for change.

Future Memories: Art from South Africa Manfred Zylla
Manfred Zylla – Future Memories
Manfred Zylla – Future Memories

ARP 2009 – The Family Safe – Erik Chevalier in Cape Town

in collaboration with

Erdmann Contemporary/thephotographer’sGalleryZA

“I’ve always been fascinated by family albums in general, for what they say but especially for what they don’t say. these pictures were taken in the countries that are important to my personal history but the triks they contain, the missing parts are about what they, as all family albums, don’t say.

My personal family, as far as I’m concerned, starts in the spring of 1915 when my two grandfathers fougth the same battle on opposite fronts. It’s considered one of the lowest points of history, the first time poison gas was used. It was fierce, cruel and immoral.
But the next generation set up family together and started another album….” (Erik Chevalier)

ARP 2009 – The World Needs Us – Karlien de Villiers, Nomusa Makhubu, Collen Maswanganyi, Norman O’Flynn – Curated by Heidi Erdmann

The World Needs Us, curated by Heidi Erdmann is a group exhibition of South African artists: Norman O’Flynn, Nomusa Makhubu, Karlien de Villiers e Collen Maswanganyi. They are four emerging talents who live and work in Grahamstown, Cape Town and Johannesburg.

Well known for his big ironic paintings and sculptures, Norman O’Flynn is deeply interested in the human condition. His visual language is reflected in his canvasses full of comic strip hero’s, half-gods and the typical cow-hide spots.
In his work Nomusa Makhubu assembles the inputs of what he sees around him, between identity and history. He uses in fact his own self image in the majority of his photographic works.
Karlien de Villiers explores the murky waters of the sub conscience, but is not looking for either explanations or interpretations of the visions created by dreams and nightmares.
The works of Collen Maswanganyi are wooden hand-carved and painted sculptures, inspired by typical South African stereotypes and idiosyncrasies.
Whereas some of these artists reflect the reality around them, others address the more complex issues affecting their society.

This is therefore an occasion to get to know the young art of the most vivacious of African countries, whose great achievements in terms of democracy and multiculturalism not hide to the artist perception political and economics contraddictions already existent.

The Centro Luigi Di Sarro keeps on promoting international exchanges, by hosting the South African artists as part of a cultural project with Erdmann Contemporary, whose second stage will be the exhibition of an Italian artist in few months time at PhotographersGalleryZa in Cape Town, under the supervision of Heidi Erdmann, who has also selected the artists for the exhibition in Rome.
The collaboration between the “Accademia di Belle Arti” (Academy of Fine Arts) of Rome and the South African Universities of Grahamstown and Stellenbosch has allowed the organisation of some conferences and workshops with Italian students from different disciplines of art. A similar initiative is being planned with the Italian artists that are going to be hosted in South Africa.

The project has obtained the patronage of the South African Embassy in Rome, the Italian Embassy in Pretoria, the Italian Consulate in Cape Town, the Province of Rome (office for cultural policies) and the Academy of Arts of Rome.  Sponsor: Alpitour World

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