Galleria Anna Marra presents Regeneration, Aron Demetz’ solo show which opens the new exhibition season.
The exhibition features the typical sculptures made of bronze, charred wood and plaster, with the surfaces “wounds” through lacerations.
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Aron Demetz starts from traditional processing techniques, including modelling, fusion and combustion, to give life to human figures “regenerated”, purified by fire and heat, witnesses and custodians out of time of a human awareness to keep alive.
Regeneration is the natural process through which an animal or vegetal organism reproduces partsof its body identical to itself following a traumatic or physiologic mutilation that occurs over its life cycle. Almost without our realising it, this phenomena goes on continually, as plants grow, a natural event or one determined by a man’s action causes a branch to break or a root to be cut, the plant survives and develops, substituting the damaged parts until finally it too ceases to live. This process can be defined as a form of perseverance of the biological matrix, the same one regulating a human being’s instinct to survive, and characterising Demetz’s sculptural language.
In fact his research into the expressive potential of wood has shown an undoubtable perseverance in wanting to give new life to this organic material which has lost its vital functions. Aron Demetz walks in forests in search of fallen trunks and uprooted trees, he never cuts down a tree which is still green, alive; he carefully evaluates the colour and the grain of the wood, its compactness and the “accidents” of time and finally he observes the local ecosystem to understand the aesthetic potential inherent in the unique and particular piece of wood he has found. Once removed from its natural environment, the trunks and roots suitable for sculpting are moved to the artist’s studio, where the artisanal working process that will regenerate them into sculptures to be viewed in the round begins, though he leaves visible traces of what they were in nature and what they will be. The animist idea of the continuity of life and the memory of past times are found in the knots, in the grain and in the colours, the breakages and the holes that the artist assumes as expressive stylemes.
Through a journey that involves the spectator physically and psychologically, the exhibition traces the entire research of Aron Demetz, developing a dialogue between sculptures belonging to different series: Advanced Minorities, Burning and Autarchy.
In addition to the real-sized human figures, some of which made specifically for the occasion, the exhibition is enriched by some small bozzetti, which allow us to intuit and perceive the creative process of the artist.
Aron Demetz was born in 1972 in Val Gardena, Bolzano, where he still lives and works. To express his art he adopted sculpture in wood, traditional in Sud Tirol.
His works – which represent human figures in classic or strange and unusual positions – explore the possibilities and limits of wood as a medium.
The strong physical presence of these works profoundly involves the spectator on a psychological level.
After carving the figurds out of the block of wood, the material is subjected to one or more of three processes or lacerations. Its surface is roughened, burned or covered with drops of resin. In fact rather than present works with perfectly smooth surfaces Demetz celebrates the wood’s texture and its transformations through these several natural processes.
His human figures are charged with a series of strong ethical and existential valences, appearing regenerated, purified by fire and heat and as witnesses and custodians outside time of a human consciousness which must be kept alive.
Among his main exhibitions we note: MANN – Museo Archeologico Nazionale, Napoli, Italy; Museo de arte y historia, Guanajuato, Mexico; Museum of Modern Art, Korea; Art Center Hugo Voeten, Belgium; Hans Arp Museum, Rolandseck; MACRO, La Pelanda, Roma, Italy and Museo Archeologico, Milan, Italy.
His artworks are in important public and private collections, among them: Museo Daez-Centrum, Lichtenstein; Museo Trautmannsdorff, Merano; Museo Omero, Ancona; Museo Ladin San Martin de Tor, Bolzano; Museum Tirol Panorama, Innsbruck; Museum Beelden Aan Zee, Den Haag; Hans Arp Museum, Rolandseck; Museum Artcenter Hugo Voeten, Herentals; Fondazione Michetti, Francavilla al Mare; Fondazione VAF, Rovereto; Fondazione Fendi, Roma; Fondazione Barth, Bressanone; Senato della Repubblica, Palazzo Madama, Roma; Regione Trentino Alto Adige; Nuovo Cimitero di Jesi.