Guglielmo Castelli’s painting reveals an hybrid and subtly violent iconographic universe, where bodies and objects ceaselessly merge one into another. Human figures — investigated in both their physical and mental extension — are the subject of his representation, while space is his experimental field.
Castelli questions the relation between inner and outer space, between bowels and environment, and somehow overturns the precepts of Italian Renaissance painting, with its strict geometric and rational system. Released from any constraint, figures slip and overlap on either neutral backdrops or unfamiliar landscapes, flowing like lightning flashes, clouds at dusk and wind-torn vegetation.
From fluid and wide, his brushstrokes coagulate into thick knots that are used to portray melancholy, astonishment and wonder, while his characters melt in gentle yet cruel chromatic accents, suspended in uncertain postures that reflect an unsteady grip on reality.
On this occasion, Castelli presents a thorough selection of multiple format canvases, produced during the last months of his residency at Künstlerhaus Bethanien. Works on show witness the growth and evolution of his practice during in the period he spent in Berlin.
His palette grew brighter, while his painting technique became more complex, with a new, keen eye for details and ornament. The treatment of background and context is now more self-aware and structured: figures find themself located in psychological spaces, which are crossed by forces and dynamics they can decide either to contrast or surrender to.
Guglielmo Castelli was born in Turin in 1987, where he lives and works.