MATtam 26

Manto Arte Temporanea | Temporary Art Manto
short exhibitions in found spaces

Isolo17 Gallery | Piazza Isolo 17 | Verona

Aldo Grazzi

Ghimma

Saturday January 24 2015
only between 4:30 and 6:30 PM


I started working with glass beads towards the end of 1987 after a trip to Kenya, where I had been invited by the art patron and collector Giulio Bargellini to produce a sculpture in wood. As I returned to Italy, I kept thinking about the beauty of the ornaments worn by the Masai and Samburu whom I had crossed in the streets of Malindi.
After that first encounter, during following journeys there I managed to meet young warriors who were particularly skilled in working with beads and I shared with them the making of small works on leather based on my designs. While I was the guest of the families of two dear Samburu friends, Kanta and Kenedy, in their wide home at Marallal, a vast highland raised 2500 meters above sea level between lake Turkana and lake Vicoria, I had the privilege to work with women even more skilled in the Shanga craft.
During those years, until my last trip in 1993, I have changed my attitude not only towards the making and the system of art but also my life itself.
The bead works I had produced in Italy on the loom have received some scant response, but as for my collaborations with the Samburu, just about no one wanted them. These small works have never been exhibited, even while cultural hybrids have become sought and presented as an ill-defined trend.
The one and only exhibit of the works that were made in Africa happened in Deruta in 2004 and was titled "Ghimma", fire in the Masai language. Here now I am presenting the art art made with Michel Lelesas, Kenedy Lesiopa, Kanta, Tomas Pepayale, David Lerumaki, Letowuan, Kumbei Lekichorumogi (Abadè), Molly.

Aldo Grazzi, born in 1954 in Pomponesco (Mantova), lives and works in Perugia and Venice. He has taught in the Perugia, Sassari and Carrara Academies. Currently he teaches Painting and Outer Media Techniques in Venice. After graduating from the Fine Arts Academy of Bologna, his research evolves in a way that is radically different from the Transavanguardia trend, as he participates in the birth of a new cultural climate pioneered by a new generation of artists. He eventually proceeds in refining manual techniques that also extend to painting.

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