Coming up in May from the ever super Arcade gallery on Lever St (EC1) is an exhibition that pairs two Italian artists, painter Luca Bertolo and photographer Alessandra Spranzi. Exploring the commonalities of their practice which both have a tendency towards the impulsive chance action, everyday subject matter/material and an aesthetic style that shows the material making process (as the gallery  puts it – the tricks of the trade) – Arcade looks at the precarious midway point between image making and surface.

Spranzi is exhibiting several photographic collages from the series Nello Stresso Momento ("At the Same Time") (2012). Using images taken from 60’s and 70’s design magazines, she cuts out shapes, overlaying them with other images – creating coloured voids with jagged exacto knife borders. These uninhabited environments have been sliced open to reveal another world lurking underneath.

Bertolo new painterly collages use the tricolour flag as their starting point in the series Bandieres (“Flags”). The flags are not painted but are dirty paint rags that have been used by Bertolo to clean his brushes and then glued to the surface of the canvas. The work touches on ideas of the life of an object – the canvas becomes both a museum and mausoleum for the object, acting as both a tribute and the confining unescapable pin that holds down the butterfly. The collaged shapes constructed into the flag image also have a resonant ideological power - reminding the viewer that despite their muted colours – not specifically political in any way – they still have a potential energy – the potential after-life or perhaps just one moment in the moving trajectory of the world of a grubby cloth.

 Luca Bertolo and Alessandra Spranzi runs at Arcade from May 1 - May 31. Preview is 18.00-20.00 - April 30.

87 Lever Street, London, EC1V 3RA

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AuthorSacha Waldron