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Zinc wings

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7000 EUR

Zinc wings

From the series the wings of Icarus








80 x 100 x 30 cm
31.50 x 39 x 11.81 in


7000,00 €

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  • About the work
  • Bibliography

Similar to the manner of Arte Povera, of which some references are evident, he departs from it to the depth of thought, inherent in his work, which leaves out some complacent aspects, often present in the works of the great sanctifiers universally recognized of this movement.

He keeps his barbarous, hard look, spurious from formal and stylistic complacency to favour that dialogue with matter and with the materials that are his stylistic sign. Politano converses with the elements that chance and often the neglect of time and of people has at first sight made unusable. Refuse, of a world and of a humanity by now lost in its madness and which in Politano’s hands or better, in his mind, return to live ennobled by a gesture that becomes art.
Prolegomena of a way of living the very personal artistic language in a vision of art, that of Politano, that comes from far away, dense as if it is of ancient echoes, references which evoke shamanic ceremonies in which who watches does not remain simple spectator, but unconsciously becomes officiant, integral part of a work made of visible, tactile and olfactory sensations.

In the work of Politano there is a barbarous, often brutal echo which reminds of the bleak poetics of Blade Runner, in which, in the chaotic aimless spread of the protagonist the dim light of hope can be seen. The works of Politano have, in their material poverty, the same glimmer of hope, of rebirth, renewed vitality able to give to who watches the echo of a world, far away but inevitably tending towards a future.
A future that sees, in my opinion, Franco Politano among the great protagonists of art of our time.

Vincenzo Sanfo

Published in the Verso Sud catalog by E. Crispolti, editions Dietro le Quinte.

About the Artist

1952 Catania, Italy

In 2011 he was invited to the 54th International Exhibition of Art of the Biennale of Venice, Italian Pavilion with the work Army of the souls. Also in 2011 to the Biennale of Sacred Art of Venice, Grimani Palace, curated by Vittorio Sgarbi, with the work St. Francis. In 2013 at the Premio Termoli with the work Towards the Future.
His works are in numerous public and private collections.

Grandson of a Sicilian cart maker and son of a carver, Franco Politano breathes, in the family workshops, the desire and the freedom to do,  which remain the strong sign of all his artistic search following. The fertile craftsman humus of the familial environment fertilizes the innate predisposition of young Francesco towards artistic expression, which finds early systematization at the Institute of Art of Catania. The teaching of neoclassical orientation of the sculptor Domenico Tudisco directs Politano to figurative settings, which during the ‘70s, however, is corrected in the direction of more conceptual interests. These are the lively years  of frequenting the Academy of Fine Arts of Rome under the guidance of Pericle Fazzini and Umberto Mastroianni, and later the Braidense Academy in Milan, where Politano with Alik Cavaliere gradually matures a stricter and more autonomous language. Meanwhile, in 1973, the encounter with Enrico Crispolti allows him to enter the circuit of art exhibitions, be it with the participation in 5 painters and 2 sculptors or specially in the important international event Volterra 73 (recalled this summer in Volterra 73.15).

The union with the Roman critic continues during the following years, and in 1986 Crispolti signs the dense essay of presentation of the exhibition Percorso di Vita (Path of Life), which assembles, around Franco Politano, numerous consents. In his critical test Crispolti emphasizes “the presence of two referential, nearly opposite poles” in the Politano’s work:  the physicality, pushed and enjoyed, on the one hand, and the more clearly symbolic and conceptual assumption of the value of the image, on the other” (Crispolti 1986 pp. nn.) For the rest it is the artist himself in those years to accentuate the role of these two components, which are inserted in a special field of action: the triad formula is born: “visual thought – environmental space – material object” which accompanies the figurative experimentations of Franco Politano for all the early ‘80s. In these years, a constant symbol recurs  in his figurative repertoire, the bi-phallic figure, which, according to the lucid reading of Enrico Crispolti, is “an archetypical symbol of life, naturally, but in the concreteness of an anthropological-social collocation that becomes explicit exactly in the ”path” rather than somewhere else, therefore in precise references to a typology of education, of Catholic tradition, not only on a national, but, I would say, a basically clearly Sicilian level; according to the definition of this, however, the symbol explicitly assumes valency of distant, archaic, Mediterranean reference” ( E. Crispolti in Leone 1986, pp. nn.)

During the ‘90s Franco Politano intensifies his participation in the cultural life of Catania and its territory, with the opening of the gallery “La Porta Rossa”, supported by Francesco Gallo, in 1990, and, in 1995, with the institution of the Trecastagni Museum, which through a series of temporary exhibitions soon shows itself as a place of convergence and comparison for the cultural tendencies of the island. The frequent expositions in the rest of the national territory indicate that the identifying facts of the Catanese artist’s art are by now well defined and solid, who shows autonomy of thought and action with regard to the historical-critical balance called for from time to time for his work: poor art, conceptual art and ecological art are categories that Politano’s path continuously intersects, without however abstaining from the irreducible nucleus of interest around which his artistic actions rotate: man.

Franco Politano is indeed the man who turns to other people by means of “a work full of Mediterranean ‘cordiality’ that wants to talk to the heart and not only to intelligence” (Pappalardo 2007, p. 7). Anthropological art is, in fact, the definition that the artist himself loves to give to his actions. In the triad elaborated in the ‘80s the agent subject indeed has remained, concealed or better understood: the only motor able to start the mechanism of interaction between the facts is man, in a double acceptation which could better be defined in the relationship of sender and recipient. Indeed the artist as a person created a “material object” and transports it from macrocosmic “environmental space” of its interiority to that microscopic one of expository space in order to transfer his “visual thought” up to the person as observer. What fascinates even more in the personality of Franco Politano is that the strict critical awareness of his own artistic actions do not lead the artist to erect a wall in the binomial between handicraft and art which stayed at the base of his artistic imprinting in the family, but rather gives vital force to interchange and contaminations. In this way, the language of Politano orients itself always more towards a “poetics of recovery of fragments” (F. Musotto in Gallo 2000, p. 1), which allows the Catanese to go beyond the visible, perceiving and intuiting in the wreck and in the carcass of the object that has been, another life, another dimension, a new breath” (A. D’Amico in Basili, Arionte 2008, p 9) which often turns out the extreme and most appreciable attempt to conserve an identity and a new genuinely peasant memory, in which the “remote, archaic, Mediterranean recall”, pointed out by Crispolti, is still most alive.

“The objects talk, communicate, have their history, are history, bodies full of life which remain there. Motionless waiting for someone with whom to enter a dialogue, someone who understand them, who rediscovers them, who gives them a new life. Useless scrap metal which speaks close to destiny, shoulder to shoulder they tell each other their histories and moments of their original function, each of them feels less or more important than the other, and they talk, talk, bla bla, bla bla, and when someone stops to watch them, the objects put themselves on display, but unfortunately not all are interesting, taken by other voices, by other sounds. Some object, more brazen, calls me Sir, Sir and I stop, I watch and pick it up. I talk to it, put some question, to which maybe it will not answer as I would like, and now, in spite of itself, sees itself placed again in the pile, maybe because my attention has been captured by another object which stood there instead, still and sad in an angle waiting for one of the few, no, just me, to give it the possibility to live again through a new identity, another life” (F. Politano in D’Amico 2008, p. 10).

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About the Gallery


Catania CT, Via S. Michele 32

Among the most important art spaces in Catania, since 2003 Arionte's Gallery is characterized by a strong commitment to the promotion of contemporary art with an emphasis on innovative and experimental approaches. The gallery owner develops the comparison and the dialogue between italian and international historicized masters of the twentieth century and y...

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