Jacopo Dal Bello's Elegy of the Flesh exhibition
"...reason is not, in any way, a transcendent feature of the universe or of disembodied mind. Instead it is shaped crucially by the peculiarities of our human bodies, ... and by the specifics of our everyday functioning in the world.”
- George Lako and Mark Johnson.
Elegy of the Flesh exhibition
Dal Bello creates poetic images of the flesh and organic forms, aided by figurative memories. Emphasising the painted surface as a bodily surrogate through which space is experienced, his focus is on matter and its presence, in quiet opposition to those forms of communication that distance.
Work presented in the exhibition explores the relationship between classicism and contemporary practice, often with an iconic painting taken as a starting point. The original work, or part thereof, is reduced to its structural base, in an attempt to shift elements of classicism toward a contemporary aesthetic that challenges not just the reification these famous works of art suer, but also the flattening and distortion of history and memory.
The body is “suggested” rather than described fully. With an open and fragmentary aesthetic that solicits reconstruction, Dal Bello’s paintings draw their ingredients from a range of contexts, including popular culture, art iconography and found material.
Dal Bello biography
Jacopo Dal Bello is a recent graduate of the Cass, London Metropolitan University (2014). Growing up in Italy’s Veneto region, the materiality of painting was ever-present for Dal Bello in the work of Alberto Burri, whose work is embedded in an exploration of the material. Dal Bello is a deft handler of the work of other artists, including the erotic distortion of the body of Hans Bellmer, the architectural framing and paintwork of Francis Bacon and the notation of Cy Twombly.
5th Base gallery
5th Base is an exhibition space on Heneage Street, near the famous Brick Lane in East London. Since September 2012 the gallery has held over 200 exhibitions.
Image: DETAIL: As if you could kill time without injuring eternity, after Michelangelo (2016)
Acrylic, oil paint and pencil on canvas, 185 x 174 cm