How many exhibition works:
- 20 - 29
Pontone Gallery is proud to present a new sequence of paintings by the critically-acclaimed, Italian artist, Matteo Massagrande. These pictures explore vistas of sun-bleached, Greek architecture that disclose fragmented views of Mediterranean land, sea and sky. Painted in a cool, blue-tinted palette, they are masterful evocations of a particularly atmospheric quality of crystalline sunlight.
This painter’s superlative representational technique is evident in his deft handling, comprehensive understanding of colour and, above all, a remarkable ability to accurately define values of light and shade. His scenes are meticulously constructed. Built over a solid framework of line and contour that defines the three-dimensional space, they are fleshed out by a careful marshalling of closely-observed and fluently-expressed shade, tint and hue. Massagrandes’s considered and painstaking approach produces images of meditative sophistication. This makes for flattering correspondence with the classical masters he so reveres.
Massagrande is a great manipulator of perspective. His compositions are complex, carefully wrought structures that contain, mask and reveal, to lead the eye into, through and beyond the picture plane. He implements subtle distortions and combinations of views that sustain an illusion of coherent physical space. The eye is seduced and invited to wander seamlessly, investigating, resting and moving on through his evocative interpretations.
These scenarios are uninhabited, but not empty: human activity and occupation has left its mark on time-worn interiors. The paint on walls, doors and windows is often scuffed and peeling; tiles are cracked; metalwork rusts; plants grow wild and penetrate the buildings’ fabric. These are sites shaped by time and use. They are ambiguous: sometimes it is uncertain whether they are abandoned. Nevertheless, there is a palpable sense of imminent presence, an absence about to be filled. In these works we sense a continuity of lives lived and the implication of more to come.
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