With a 28-gauge shotgun, he shots on the canvas on which he places containers of color
IN THE SILENCE OF THE VALLEY AT THE FOOT OF THE MATTERHORN, THE ARTIST REFLECTS ON THE SENSE OF THE EXISTENCE
. In the introductory text of the “Bing Bang” catalogue, published for the personal exhibition of Gabriele Maquignaz (Aosta, 1972) at the Lattuada Gallery in Milan, Guido Folco writes about how the artist is trying to subvert the expressive order of our time, with courage and a measured recklessness, the typical features of a visionary man. His research, since the last years of the past century, “stands between spirituality and the overcoming of matter” which underpins a sensibility for the creative action that goes beyond the artistic dimension. Indeed, the place that Gabriele has chosen as shelter and home (in the silence of the valleys at the foot of the Matterhorn) drives him to a deep reflection on what it means to be alive. The question on creation has always fascinated the human being, for its aesthetic connotations and, most of all, for the most complex features on the meaning of life. The relationship with the divine element inside the creative act – which in our case it’s an artwork – strongly persists in the gesture, in the author that realizes it and in the resulting object, all of them equally endowed with attraction and fearfulness. Embraced by the peace of its mountain, Gabriele Maquignaz reflects on the inability for the man to replace God.
"THE SHOT, FROM BEING A VIOLENT ACT, TURNS INTO CREATIVE GESTURE IN ORDER TO CAPTURE THE ETERNITY OF THE UNIVERSE"
And here comes the gesture of shooting with a 28-gauge shotgun, controlled with a still and regulated hand, as the symbol of an innovative artistic technique. He places the canvas at the right distance and inclination, with the container of colors adhering to the surface, just waiting to be shot by the bullet and to free their power. In the words of The artist himself claims: “With this mystical and spiritual gesture I created and imprinted the big bang on canvas for the first time in the history of art”. Accord to Philippe Daverio etc. a “objectively cruel gesturality that redeems itself in a mystic inspiration”.
"AN OBJECTIVELY CRUEL GESTURALITY REDEEMS ITSELF IN A MYSTIC GESTURE"
Likewise, Flavio Lattuada says that “the shot, from being a violent, harmful, lethal action, with Marquignaz it turns into the quintessential creative gesture, and the perforated canvas, wounded and full of color, turns into a passage for grasping the eternity of the universe”. But here is where the human being stops. The control is limited on the intentions, fate does the rest. Here is when the uncontrolled gashes with a spatialist taste arise, here is when its unpredictable juxtaposition of tonalities come to life: this is how Maquignaz juggles in between the metaphysic acceleration and the informal apathy, a renewed historicistic-style spatial research and the expressive (un)conscious of the Gutai group, such as that kind of action painting that transcends the idea of control for acting in a complete gestural autonomy (even if we know that it’s not precisely like that). So, the moment of a creation which is intended in its deepest conceptual sense. The aesthetic will be only an evident and inevitable consequence, the most part of it will be the result of a manic planned structuring. All the rest is art.