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Vittorio Santoro

*1962 Zurich, lives in Paris/Zurich www.vittoriosantoro.info

  • «Rhinocéros sinon Bérenger», 2020
  • Lithography on BFK Rives
  • Edition of: 22
  • Size: 59,40 cm x 42,00 cm
  • Production: Thomi Wolfensberger, Zurich
  • CHF 680.00
  • available
  • Inquiry

Two metal intercoms with handwritten surnames. No matter how the sheet is held, one of the systems is always upside down. The names - Rhinocéros and Bérenger - refer to the play by Eugène Ionesco, first performed in 1959. In the play an epidemic of "Rhinocérite" breaks out, which gradually turns the inhabitants of a village into rhinoceroses. Only the protagonist Bérenger retains his human form until the end, even in his ambiguity, and vows never to capitulate.

When hanging up the picture you are faced with the choice: do I want to read Rhinocéros or Bérenger? Which is the "right" orientation for me? By directly involving the viewer, Vittorio Santoro invites them to deal with the central themes of Ionesco's play, namely conformity, systems thinking and totalitarian regimes. The choice of the "realistic" medium of photography to represent the intercom and the "trompe-l'œil"-like execution of the lithography and the embossed print contrast with the surreal character of the play and in a certain sense transfer fiction into our reality.

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  • Finally Unfinished..., 2016
  • Lithography with 2 folds each
  • Edition of: 21
  • Size of image: 76,00 cm x 56,00 cm
  • Size: 76,00 cm x 56,00 cm
  • Production: Thomi Wolfensberger, Zurich
  • CHF 640.00
  • available
  • Inquiry
  • They Seemed Mysterious..., 2016
  • Lithography with 2 folds each
  • Edition of: 21
  • Size of image: 76,00 cm x 56,00 cm
  • Size: 76,00 cm x 56,00 cm
  • Production: Thomi Wolfensberger, Zurich
  • CHF 640.00
  • available
  • Inquiry

Vittorio Santoro's 'time-based text drawings' oscillate between an experiment with language and a practice of poetic action. They condense within themselves a certain dimension of time, of duration experienced, of 'durée'. In an act of mental and physical concentration, the artist traces certain chosen terms, word series or sentences over long periods of time on a daily basis until the linguistic signs take on a sculptural presence on/in the sheet. For the viewer, a scenario emerges in which the artistic act - a ritual - carves itself into the indistinguishable layers of graphite. While the 'time-based text drawings' often seem condensed and condensed, they ultimately investigate the question of what consciousness or individual thinking is. For Santoro, however, the question involves complex scenarios: possible failure and missed opportunities or ambiguous or even compromising social conditions, but also integrity and personal strength. The drawings neither 'explain' nor 'describe' such aspects: They can only be felt in a detail or 'moment', both visual and pictorial, that focuses a kind of inner, seismic movement.

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  • Composition (Hêniokhos) 2014
  • Wall object, black varnished wood, serigraphy on copper
  • Edition of: 17
  • Dimensions: 61,00 cm x 47,00 cm x 1,45 cm
  • Production: Black Church Print Studio, Dublin 2
  • CHF 1800.00
  • available
  • Inquiry

The present multiple consists of seven copper plates mounted on a plywood plate primed with black printing ink. One of the copper plates is screen printed. The work combines the compositional structure of a painting by Piet Mondrian with a detailed view of the charioteer of Delphi, an antique full-figure statue from the 5th century B.C. The bronze sculpture - of which only the hand and broken reins can be seen - depicts a charioteer at the moment when he steers his carriage in front of the cheering spectators to receive the tribute of victory. Despite the magnitude of the moment, the athlete has his emotions under control and radiates stoic equanimity. Mondrian, for his part, abstracts the visible world into horizontal and vertical lines in his painting, creating a tension that "urges us to balance". The multiple of Santoro combines the seemingly static lines of modernist composition and the allusions to movement and dynamics of ancient sculpture. Seemingly opposed - here the figurative sculpture, there the abstract image - both are connected by a subtle concept of formal language: time is captured in a spatial coordinate and surface expands into space.

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