Juxtapoz Magazine – Fabio Viscogliosi Takes Us Through a “Palazzo” @ L21 Gallery, Palma, Spain


The doors open and we enter L21’s Room 5. Before we know it, we find ourselves walking through the “Palazzo” that Fabio Viscogliosi has created for us. A palace with gleaming floors and greenish walls where a series of paintings with a strong cinematographic character will accompany us throughout the visit, as if they were ancient tapestries.

The green walls on which some of the paintings hang emphasise the scenic character of the exhibition, where the same colour that has been used on the canvases escapes from them to invade the space, in the same way that a soundtrack invades the room and makes us disappear from our own world to inhabit a much more attractive and exciting one for a short period of time.

Each of the paintings that we come across along our journey through the Palace seem to tell us very different stories. Just as when we choose a title from the billboard when we go to the cinema, it is up to the spectator to choose which painting to stand in front of, and to imagine the multiple narrative possibilities that the work offers us.

In “Rocky landscape” an imposing rock formation, worthy of any John Ford “Western”, seems to await the arrival of a band of outlaws covered from the nose down in dark bandanas under the blazing midday sun somewhere in the Arizona desert, riding at full speed and carrying sacks of money after a bank robbery.

“Paradiso”, the largest painting in the exhibition, seems to depict a meeting between a medieval lord and his vassal, perhaps to honour him after a great feat of war and with the aim of knighting him. While in “Rainbow Man” we can see a subject straight out of Al Capone’s own gang, heading towards some part of the city with the invisible but present pistol hidden under his long green coat.

Finally, we meet the solitary Jacques Cousteau-like character from “Bagno Paradiso”, looking out over the ocean at sunset, enjoying the last few hours of calm on land before setting off on a new ocean adventure in the morning.

With his characteristic style of flat colours, delimited by a vibrant line that envelops everything, and with a strong comic influence that can also remind us of the cinematographic story board, the artist builds a series of “Palazzos” and gives us the key to all of them so that we can wander through their corridors and rooms, escaping for a moment from our reality to live other stories. —Enrique Suasi

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