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In our contemporary setting, the excessive display of nudity and an aesthetic tendency towards the fetish of full positiveness, has created a variety of new pathways for artists to engage into. Andrea Respino focuses on a number of atypical aspects surrounding manhood and partial nudity, entering an expressive scenario made of uncertainty and unspoken weakness, aiming to communicate it to the viewer in all of its unstableness and continuous happening.

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Born in Mondovì, in 1976, Andrea Respino currently lives and works in Turin, focusing his research primarily on the medium of painting and its wide range of aesthetic possibilities. Coming from a various background, having taken part to the duo-project “Alis/Filliol” alongside Davide Gennarino, and having obtained the art world’s attention thanks to a number of solo exhibitions of the aforementioned project, Andrea Respino has recently directed his focus towards the sharp-edged world of painting. 

 

Andrea Respino, Siamo Devoti alle Nostre Acque, 2019. Oil on board.

 

If we look closely at the artist’s research, we may experience a variety of settings where spaces, objects and shapes, create a stage for a “world of men” in which the subjects’ partial nudity creates a feeling of what is defined as an “incomplete state of dress”. This specific narrative, has been researched in depth by Respino throughout the years, allowing the artist to create dialogues with other interesting persona’s like the one of Sara Enrico, Respino’s partner and colleague, with whom he was able to put up a duo-show at Quartz Studio (Turin), titled “Mai un vestito dunque, adeguato” (Therefor, never a suitable dress). In this interesting exhibition, the gestural and expressive approach of the painter, found a strong connection with the freedom expressed by the poetic and performative essence of the materials used in Sara Enrico’s sculptural practice, creating for the viewer an atypical setting in which diverging media find ways to combine and express their dialectic relations. 

 

Andrea Respino, Presenze, 2020. Pastel on board.

 

Besides all of Andrea Respino’s past collaborations and shared researches, his works stand as an example of painterly technique and chromatic sensibility. Working both on small and medium size, Respino uses canvases, paper and wooden boards to create compositions of powerful expressive presence, in which the element of manhood is analyzed in all of its uncertainty and fragility. Atypical poses, partial nudity and vivid colour tones, create for the viewer a feeling of shyness and delicacy regarding the unspoken weakness of contemporary masculinity. The openness of the backgrounds, combined with the expressiveness of chroma and the dynamism communicated by the subject’s poses, enhance a feeling of rejection towards stillness, activating a sensation of continuous happening and unstable incompletion, in which the subjects are allowed to express all of their shyness and uncertainty.

 

Andrea Respino, Verde Accanito II, 2021. Pastel on wooden board.

 

In the times of full positiveness, Andrea Respino engages completely into the beauty of uncertainty, expressing to the viewer a variety of interesting aspects that can derive from a dialectical and partially negative scenario. In our contemporary times, Andrea Respino reminds us viewers about the charm and elegance that can be expressed by unstableness. 

 

Andrea Respino, Fratelli, 2020. Pastel on wooden board.

 

Cover image: Andrea Respino, Un Vento Caldo Che Ci Vincola, 2021. Pastel on board.

Written by Mario Rodolfo Silva

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