Palazzo Cipolla hosts Quayola’s first Italian solo exhibition, open until 30 January. The works on display, created between 2007 and 2021, provide an overview of the artist’s creative process, the passage of time, including projected futures and reconstructed pasts. The exhibition project is divided into three thematic areas: classical iconography, unfinished sculptures and the tradition of landscape painting.
Using robotic systems, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and generative software, Quayola transforms computational technology into a new artistic palette. Using computational methods Renaissance and Baroque paintings are transformed into complex digital compositions while sculptures, inspired by Michelangelo’s unfinished (non-finito) technique, are sculpted with the use of robotics. This is followed by representations of nature, the product of a generative art that highlights the fascinating – albeit paradoxical – similarity between the natural and digital worlds.
Despite the change in the medium of expression, the character uniting artistic research characterising the past and continuing into the present emerges throughout the exhibition – a reinterpretation of the “classic” compared with the great works of the Masters reproduced on “pedagogical labels” not only to facilitate the spectators’ visit, but also to act as a guide in the exploration and understanding of the “Quayola code”.
In Quayola’s work the constant dialogue with great masters of classical art – such as Raphael, Botticelli, Rubens and Bernini – anchors the artist’s technological experiments in tradition. In a setting such as the historic Palazzo Cipolla and with such a ‘classical’ programme, this exhibition represents an important part of the President of the Fondazione Terzo Pilastro – Internazionale Prof. Lawyer Emmanuele F. M. Emanuele’s attempt to “bring the purists of tradition closer to the new expressive codes deriving from the most up-to-date technologies which, far from being aseptic and ‘dehumanised’, place themselves at the service of the creative act in all its forms, offering artists and their users new tools to explore the ineffable mystery of making art.”
Quayola’s robotic sculptures are on display, consisting of a sculptural body made with the support of an AI robotic system inspired by Bernini, together with his algorithmic landscapes. His botanical series, such as Jardins d’été, explore parallels between organic and algorithmic life. Covering a range of techniques – prints, sculptures and videos – visitors experience transitions and paradoxes between the material and the immaterial and their reciprocal incarnations.
The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue divided into three thematic areas: classical iconography, unfinished sculptures and landscape painting. Developed as a fascinating journey through images and an unpublished visual itinerary, the catalogue brings together texts by Adriano Aymonino, Valentino Catricalà, Attilia Fattori Franchini, Lucia Longhi, Jérôme Neutres, Federica Patti, Camilla Pietrabissa, Domenico Quaranta, Daniel Rourke and Nadim Samman.
QUAYOLA, «Re-coding», Palazzo Cipolla, 2021, curated by Valentino Catricalà e Nadim Samman (catalogue Skira)
images: (cover 1) Quayola, «Remains: Vall e de Joux», 2018,Series of inkjet prints, photo: Alessandro Benvenuti (2-3-4-5) QUAYOLA, «Re-coding», Palazzo Cipolla, 2021, photo: Alessandro Benvenuti (6) Quayola, «Jardins d’été», 2017, Suite of 4K Videos, photo: Alessandro Benvenuti