b. 1943, Italy
Untitled (libreria), 2008
Smoke and soot on board
127 x 121.5 x 7 cm
Claudio Parmiggiani's connection with literature resonates in the conceptual nature of his works, which frequently draw references from philosophy and poetry to delve into themes of time, memory, and absence.
Over four decades, Parmiggiani has crafted a distinctive series known as Delocazioni, which translates to "delocation" in Italian. Inspired by silhouettes of dust naturally formed by objects placed against a wall, Parmiggiani employs fire to create haunting shadows out of ash, particularly of books.
To achieve these evocative forms, Parmiggiani ignites flames in close proximity to a panel adorned with objects, skillfully controlling the fire for hours to distil the essence of each item. After the blaze recedes, he removes the objects, leaving only lingering forms and memories captured in the shadowy outlines of smoke and ash.
An alchemical quality permeates Parmiggiani's concept and execution, where fire serves as a conduit for transforming the tangible into the intangible. This transformative process not only alters the object but also reshapes the surrounding space, challenging viewers to reconsider their notions of permanence through an exploration of various dimensions of existence.
Claudio Parmiggiani (b. 1943, Italy)
Claudio Parmiggiani is an Italian artist whose works explore the themes of time, memory, and absence. He is best known for his Delocazioni series, which utilises fire and ash to create haunting and ephemeral works of what used to be. Through his pieces, Parmiggiani challenges the idea of permanence, and engages with spatial dimensions of a space, as well as its unseen third dimension.
Parmiggiani has held numerous solo exhibitions including at the Frist Museum, USA (2019), Accademia di Francia Villa Medici, Italy (2015) and Ex Oratorio di San Lupo, Italy (2014). His works have also been showcased six times at the Venice Biennale, Italy (in 1972, 1982, 1984, 1986, 1995 and 2015), and acquired by various international institutions.