Gea interviews me below. Scroll down for the interview translated in Italian.
THE SONGS OF THE SPHERES IN THE PALM OF YOUR HAND
I SUONI DELLE SFERE NEL PALMO DELLA TUA MANO
5 MARCH - APRIL / 5 MARZO - APRILE
Opening: 5 March, 7pm - featuring a collaborative series of performances curated by Matthew Stone
Inaugurazione: 5 Marzo, ore 19:00 - con una serie di performance curate da Matthew Stone
|Gea Politi: Andre Berne-Joffroy, Paul Valéry's secretary, said of Michelangelo Merisi: "What begins in the work of Caravaggio is, quite simply, modern painting." Do you consider yourself modern or a revisionist or better a modern revisionist? |
Matthew Stone: Modern is such a difficult term for me. It could be that to refer to anything as modern would be a revisionary act. There is a tendency to assume that following these paths of thought can only lead to nihilistic dead ends, but I don’t think so.
I like the idea of being beyond history. I know that if I was born in any other age, in essence I would still be working on the same things as I am now. I see parallels, echoes and interconnections linking throughout all of time. In that sense my work is trans-historical.
Why do you choose some sort of radical naturalism (you even show imperfections in bodies) combined with a dramatic, even theatrical use of chiaroscuro?
MS: I am keen that my work is aware and honest about its own aesthetic. Lots of artists seem to use a minimalist visual language to imply that they are free from the trappings of aesthetics.
I simply make no such claims.
When we are looking at your work it is quite clear that you are stealing from different times and medias…
MS: I wouldn’t deny that.
For me it could be the cave painters of Lascaux, Caravaggio, Abramovic, Klein, Hirst, Beuys, my closest friends and lovers or Warhol. I see them as contemporaries; it doesn’t matter if some of their bodies are gone. Their ideas are alive.
In your works there are people who are part of your trusted inner circle, who always stay. May you explain this working process?
MS: I believe in collaboration. The people in my work are always part of my life and I love and respect them creatively. I would hope that people see the magic I see in that process and in them as individuals.
"I have no single connection with a single other person: I am the most solitary of persons" – Kierkegaard - Are you one person or part of it?
MS: I feel like I am trying to find the edge of where one person ends and the other begins. I feel so much a part of it, that I often wonder whether we are really individuals at all.
Sexuality is the lyricism of the masses – as Baudelaire wrote in Mon coeur mis à nu - is your heart getting more and more naked through the bodies you show in your work? Are those bodies your journal intime?
MS: Yes definitely. But with it I am not just putting myself out there, I am putting us there. Us is very important. And by us, I mean humanity.
Gea Politi: Andre Berne-Joffroy, segretario di Paul Valéry, diceva di Michelangelo Merisi: “Ciò che ha inizio con il lavoro di Caravaggio è, semplicemente, pittura moderna”. Ti consideri moderno, un revisionista, o meglio un revisionista moderno?
Matthew Stone: Moderno è una parola talmente difficile per me. Può darsi che definire qualcosa “moderno” sia un atto di revisionismo. Si tende a credere che seguire questi schemi di pensiero possa solo portare a esiti nichilisti, ma io non la penso così.
Mi piace l’idea di essere oltre la storia. So che se fossi nato in qualsiasi altra epoca, nella sostanza starei ancora lavorando alle stesse cose su cui sto lavorando ora. Vedo parallelismi, echi e interconnessioni che si collegano attraverso il tempo. In questo senso il mio lavoro è transtorico.
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