ET FIAT LUX

What you see in these pictures are simulacra, perfect imitations of real flowers.
The copies are made of plastic, nylon and polyester, and are commonly used for scientific proposes, or sold as articles for commercial or residential decoration – consumer products. The industries that realise them are specialized in different production processes and are located in the Guangdong area (China), where this business started as early as 1980. Since then, every year thousands of flowers are exported to a great number of countries in the world.

The project Et Fiat Lux involved the folding of over two hundred flowers into ikebans, according to the traditional Japanese art of flowers cut. The meticulous compositions also echo the aesthetics of Dutch Baroque still life paintings (nature morte), producing an initially familiar image for the viewer, that actually stems from a carefully built trans-historical and trans-cultural configuration. The subject and
the result of the work rely on its ambiguity: the bouquets look composed of real fresh flowers from afar, and only by getting closer it is possible to notice that they are fake. Their liveness is constantly evoked by the light, and by the sculptural precision of the bouquets itself. The light becomes the source of action, the principle of the movement able to transform the plastic materials into an archetypical
example of beauty.

Description of the project:

The entire Et fiat Lux project is constructed with different media and all of them share the investigation of a certain number of elements, approaching them through different methodologies and approaches. Between these elements, ambiguity, flowers and light are of pivotal importance.

The first part of the project (Et fiat Lux) is made by 9 photographs. Inspired by baroque still life paintings, these images are pure colour compositions that evoke classical aesthetics.

The second part of the project (Untitled, Tesla) is a photographic installation and represents the process of the ikebana making in the artist studio. The sculpture produces electricity by the generator that powers two neon lamps outside the sculpture. The alternating electric waves, produced by the generator, cause the constant blinking of the neon lamps. The vision of the installation seems to suggest the latitude of transfiguration, that presents the same ambiguity as an alchemical transformation, hovering between illusion and scientific precision.

The installation Untitled (Tesla) is related to the last part of the project, the photographic series (After Et Fiat Lux)– series still on process. The photographs are taken with the old tungsten film and the same ikebana are composted just with the vegetal bushes (without flowers), while the presence of flowers is rather evoked by the light. The light irradiation occurs in the darkroom, after the film exposure, and it is controlled by the shielding, to allow a selective passage of the light. The resulting image is animated by the red glows that create the illusion of a flower. At the moment I am working on a series, to create different colour compositions, as they would represent different typologies of flowers. In this series, the flowers are not present, but the light suggests the forms and shapes of them.

The lenticular installation (Untitled, Lenticular) is composed by 20x25cm images, realised with lenticular Plexiglas.
The animated images evoke the moment in which flowers blossom, through two prints, composed together.
The optic illusion gives vitality to a dead flower, just like a reproduction that has never been alive. The installation
alludes to the confusion between fictional representation and reality, through the sensation of the observer to be
in front of real flowers.
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