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Article by Emanuele Beluffi for ARTUU on Mauro Reggio’s exhibition in Varese

MAURO REGGIO, a dreamlike journey through the Italian landscape

If you want to do like Immanuel Kant who got to know the world without moving from his Königsberg, then you just have to visit Mauro Reggio’s solo show at PUNTO SULL’ARTE  in Varese, which opened on a Saturday morning at an apparently unusual time (but there is a very valid reason, nothing better for art aficionados than to see an exhibition in the late morning and continue the cultural trip out of town on the weekend,  and then maybe go back to the gallery in the afternoon). Un-reality is the title of Mauro Reggio’s exhibition that can be seen until March 16 and there you already have everything: unreality but with your feet on the ground, an apparent contradiction in terms that goes back to the meaning of all the works, that is, urban views characterized by the principle of the excluded third, where the aforementioned excluded third are the potentially disturbing elements that would alter the constitutive furnishings of these urban landscapes.

So: only buildings, bridges, roads and ring roads, squares, palaces and monuments, total absence of intruders that mean humans, zero people, zero planes, zero cars and anything else that recalls the presence of living creatures and/or constructs that ex post testify to their presence apart from the infrastructures and works of ingenuity, silent protagonists for what is a bit the stylistic code of Mauro Reggio’s painting.Call it metaphysical if you want, but without disturbing muses and melancholy, take me away: forget Sironi, it’s not the same championship and it’s not even the same sport, and Alessandra Redaelli, author of the text in the catalogue, who presented the exhibition to the public on the morning of the inauguration, rightly pointed this out.

The light in Reggio’s paintings is sometimes interstitial, reminiscent of the Niccian/De Chirico stimmung (translation for the people: Nietzsche/De Chirico atmosphere) of an autumn afternoon: see the painting Portici di Varese to believe it. Elsewhere the same light is psychedelic (take a trip looking at Via del Corso) and a kaleidoscope of colors and long shadows (every now and then the hand of the famous self-proclaimed pictor optimus reappears), as in the series of the Tangenziali, where no one goes to command apart from painting. Mauro Reggio’s exhibition is a journey through the cities of Italy, from Piazza Duomo in Parma to the Colosseum and Piazza Esedra, passing along the orange and purple ring roads to the Castello Sforzesco in Milan and Santo Stefano in Bologna: a tour of Italy like Goethe’s but with a different connotation, the eyes of Mauro Reggio,  who has assimilated Cézanne’s experience (“Treating nature according to the cylinder, the sphere and the cone”) and then takes geometric reality transfiguring it into unreality – Un-reality – made up of flat and saturated backgrounds that denote space (we all recognize the geographies depicted on the fly) but go beyond time (you don’t know if it’s day or night and it’s not even your fault,  because what matters here is the stimmung that is renewed).


Di Emanuele Beluffi per ARTUU

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Published on 20/02/2024