Alessandro Boezio: Temptations & Apotropaic Archetype
Inspired by the work of Hieronymus Bosch, Alessandro Boezio has created a series of sculptures dealing with the theme of spirituality and temptation. The distortion of the body, with focus on the hands and feet, manifests under the form of a hybrid, an unnatural entanglement between the human limbs or with objects and elements that resemble intimate, seductive, body parts, referencing hidden characters in Bosch’s masterpiece ‘The Garden of Earthly Delights’.
The installation ‘Temptations of St. Anthony’ also refers to Bosch, and Boezio explains: “San Antonio is encased in meditation to not be distracted by the temptation of the little demons that surround him. To meditate on the holy holds his hands in the traditional gesture of prayer and takes the body a closed position which is circumscribed within a circle. The installation takes up this idea of circularity of the saint and repeats through the gesture of prayer, so that it forms a circle inside another circle as concentric circles.”
In another series, ‘Archetype Apotropaic’, the Milan based artist reflects on the gestures meant to avoid bad luck. Fingers crossed obsessively, over and over again, try to somehow influence the outcome of possible events, in an attempt to control the unknown, the present and the near future. It is interesting that in this case the anatomical change often implies an absence, incompleteness, rather than multiplication. Even when some fingers are missing, the others are used to replicate the gesture and enforce its necessity in a continuous oscillation between fear (of bad luck), security (provided by the gesture itself, as a shield against evil), and reward (only anticipated at this point, but a direct result of the crossed fingers, turned into a sort of ritual to bring good into one’s life).
When in front of the sculptures, we may face uncertainty in witnessing the fragile limits and almost untraceable connections between real and illusive, holy and profane – and yet one cannot exist without the other. Isolated from what contradicts it, it would annihilate the other’s reason of being. The artist creates out of contrasts and builds on symbols that have become part of our behavior and mindset.
Exhibited in the artist’s recent solo show at Macadam Gallery, Brussels, Belgium.
‘Reunion of Delights’
‘Under the Bell’
‘Temptations of St. Anthony’
E3 Arte Contemporanea Gallery, Brescia, Italy.
‘Scaramanzia n.1 t.t.’
All images © Alessandro Boezio