SEHNSUCHT NACH FARBE - News - Silvia Aigner




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Copyright Katharina Gossow

MICHELA GHISETTI - Dr. Antonia Hoerschelmann, Übersetzung ICT Translation Dr. Stevens

This is the first time that a museum has shown a comprehensive retrospective of the works of artist Michela Ghisetti who was born in 1966 in Bergamo, Italy, and moved to Vienna in 1992. This publication is appearing to mark the occasion. Ghisetti’s work ranges between the poles of abstract and figurative art. In her works, biographical and emotional elements merge with issues of philosophy and art theory. This gives rise to conceptually rigid, humorous and intuitive groups of works in which the artist constantly tries out new content and a wide variety of materials, challenging their fundamental principles. Right from the outset she has preferred using paper, working with its different qualities ‒ from transparent Japan paper to the cards used for her most recent works. Whether white or coloured, the painting or drawing surface also takes on aspects relating to the content and makes a significant contribution to the overall impression of the works. Moreover, observation and reflection of the sequence of movement find their expression in the creative process in the course of which the material and size of the image surface exert a major influence.

Woman and her socially defined roles have long been present as a theme in Ghisetti’s work in a wide variety of facets. In 2012, in her triptych Afua ‒ Afua/The Path ‒ Maximum, Ghisetti does not only address gender-specific dimensions of the presentation and representation of woman in today’s society, but also questions of integration and diversity that are increasingly shaping global events. The work is positioned between the greatest possible degree of photorealism and complete abstraction. This contradiction also defines her most recent works presented here for the first time.

Dots and circles have appeared in Ghisetti’s work right from the start, as a small drawing from 1994 with the title “Per-sonare” shows. In the series “Tutto”, begun in 2016, they take over the entire surface of the image: small and large spots unfurl a universe of infinitude in which the vision of a conciliatory juxtaposition of a wide variety of colours, shapes and sizes becomes a political statement calling for a life of respect in the midst of diversity. In the case of In Whose Watery Vastness Life Began it is not only the format that explodes, but in relation to the content the title adds water as a metaphor for the source of life, the subconscious that has a determining influence on us, to the dot as a mystic symbol of the source of all things.

The room-filling sculpture Unus Mundus consists of two chains, one made of black spotted glass balls, the other of pale turquoise ones. Designed to be complementary, they touch and overlap each other. With this work too, Ghisetti aims to demonstrate the necessity of integrating apparent opposites and permitting diversity.

Che Bambole! is a group of ten dolls, as Ghisetti calls them, engaged in a cheerful exchange. Each has its own name and its own character and structure. And yet they form a community, a unit. Ghisetti spent an extended period of time in Africa where she was inspired by tribal art sculptures. The series revolves around the theme of appreciation of female diversity represented here by the dolls made of the widest variety of materials. In our time shaped by the pandemic, Michela Ghisetti’s most recent works in particular constitute an appeal to understand ourselves as part of a whole and to accept responsibility for the world and for society.

Video (german): Antonia Hoerschelmann im Gespräch mit Michela Ghisetti