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Opening our winter season, UK artist Riccardo Iacono brings together a comprehensive programme of his films and videos produced over the last nine years, including the world premieres of ten new works. Iacono’s art ranges from abstract hand-painted film and digital animation to performance-to-camera and process-based video installation. Central to this exploration are themes of denial and difference; the formation of language, identity and culture through physiological and technological process and interface. By turns giddy and serene, these glimmering short films and videos are musical and poetic meditations on light, colour and memory. This is a rare opportunity to see this collection of works, and to discuss film/video imagemaking process with Riccardo Iacono afterwards.
Root, 16mm, colour, silent 5:00 min., 2003
Series A, 16mm, colour, sound, 2:00 min., 1994
Open, 16mm, colour, sound, 2:00 min., 2003
Pour, 16mm, colour, sound, 2:00 min., 2003
Deluxe, 16mm, colour, sound, 2:00 min., 2003
From Memory, 16mm, colour, silent, 16:00 min., 2003
Hard Light, 16mm, b/w, silent, 2:00 min., 2002
Letters, 35mm, colour, silent, 3:00 min., 2000
Fuzzy Lover, 16mm, b/w, silent, 1:00 min., 2003
SKZCP, DVD, silent, 2:00 min. loop, 2000
Myeyeye, dv, silent 3:00 min., 2000
Double, 16mm twin screen, sound, 2:00 min., 2003
Radiator, dv, stereo, 4:00 min., 1994/6
Cold Tape, dv, stereo, 1:00 min., 2000
Island, dv, stereo, 2:00 min., 2001
Walk, dv, stereo, 4:00 min., 2001
Play, dv, stereo, 4:00 min., 2001
Universe Energies Sustain Us, dv, stereo, 13:00 min. 2002
The Psychology of Abstraction
“There is something strangely elusive about the films and videos of Riccardo Iacono and it’s not just because he works predominantly in abstract animation. Unlike other abstract animators like Stan Brakhage, whose esoteric films are firmly grounded in abstract expressionism, Riccardo’s work operates on a psychological level where mesmerizing and vaguely representational images both haunt and comfort the viewer. It is a strange and powerful form of visual thinking and it is a pleasure to watch.
There is a lyrical quality unique to Riccardo’s brand of abstraction. In a way, these peculiar abstract animations present us with the subjective eye of the filmmaker. This subjectivity appears obvious in his more representational works like myeyeye or walk where the reflection of the recorded image or the softness of the focus duplicate the visual experience of the filmmaker.
Yet, in his abstract camera-less works, the lyrical quality emerges in the psychology of associative logic and it is startling in its inventiveness. From Memory contains imagery that glistens like the frosting on top of a cupcake. Moments later, a mysterious organic entity appears to scurry across the surface of the film (perhaps in search of some something to eat!). And then there is what appears to be ice -we are after all in the middle of a frigid winter– that glistens like…ice. At the moment that one makes an association with the imagery, a transformation occurs and a new set of subconscious material is revealed. Shapes, images and colours appear as if they are released from the unconscious as artifacts of light.
One thing is for certain: Riccardo’s films and videos represents a new and dazzling contribution to abstract art where the richness of meaning rises above the materiality of the medium.” (Roberto Ariganello)
by Riccardo Iacono