Déjà vu describes the unsettling sensation of having experienced something previously, even when in reality it is for the first time. This illusion creates a small cerebral short-circuit which undermines our perceptual certainties. The latest photographs of VERA ROSSI and sculptures of GIANLORENZO GASPERINI conjure up in different ways a feeling of déjà vu.
Vera Rossi shot all her new photographs in an old villa inhabited by the same family for generations. Paintings and objects are reflected in cracked mirrors, becoming images charged with temporal overlaps just like the context in which they are set. The emotions triggered in the viewer resemble déjà vu thanks to the particular atmosphere which pervades them and which transmits a sense of familiarity and lived experience, and thanks to the effects of the reflections where images are multiplied in a game of mirrors that fragments the visual space, leaving us disoriented and bewildered.
The wooden sculptures of Gianlorenzo Gasperini instead seem to hark back to other forms from the sculptural tradition, giving us a sense of something we are already familiar with, that we have already seen: the crouching position of the work Falso Movimento brings to mind Giambologna's L'Appennino or Arturo Martini's Centometrista; the female portrait Busto di donna evokes the fifteenth-century busts that were often the subject of reinterpretation by sculptors in the twentieth century; while L’Obelisco clearly recalls Ancient Roman archaeological finds.
Vera Rossi was born in Milan in 1968. She has been photographing nature, still lifes and works of art since 1996 and in 2013, her photographs featured in an installation event at The Armory Show, New York’s premier international art fair. Since 2017, she has exhibited annually at the MIA Photo Fair in Milan while in 2019, she was invited to show at the Landscape Museum (Museo del Paesaggio) in Verbania and the prestigious Milan exhibition space of Italian stylist Antonio Marras, Nonostante Marras. Rossi’s work plays with the concept of transparency. Windows and vases are the subject matter of many of her photographs as she examines the way natural elements such as flowers and trees are seen through the delicate ‘lens’ of the transparent glass. Her research extends to her use of medium, her preferred printing support being plexiglass. Rossi’s photographs are present in many private collections including those of Morris Adjmi, the late Germano Celant, Steve Hannah, Peppe Servillo, Paolo Taviani and Milena Vukotic.
Gianlorenzo Gasperini was born in Civitavecchia in Italy in 1967 and is a graduate of Rome's Academy of Fine Arts where he specialized in sculpture. From 2001 to 2012, large-scale, bronze sculptures by Gasperini were on permanent display at the Opera Gallery in New York while in 2018, his work was showcased in a one-person exhibition at Italy’s first and only sculpture fair, Milano Scultura. In recent years, Gasperini has also been working with other materials including wood, synthetic resins, wax and gesso, creating a series of sculptures that possess a distinct sense of line and movement while exploring the theme of balance and equilibrium.
Given Gasperini and Rossi’s long-standing collaboration with the gallery, this exhibition has been specially chosen to help celebrate the opening of the new space at Via Giulia 13 in Rome and the gallery’s change of name from RvB Arts to Von Buren Contemporary.