P420, Bologna, H5
P420 presents a solo presentation by Laura Grisi. Since the beginning of her career in the mid 1960s Grisi , who divides her time between Rome and New York, has broken through the conventions of traditional painting and sculpture by pioneering new forms and media.
For Spotlight, P420 focuses on Grisi’s involvement with Pop Art from 1966 to 1969. The stand will feature her ‘Neon Paintings’ such as Subway (1967) and the ‘East Village’ series (1967), which was exhibited in the exhibition ‘Young Italians’ at the Jewish Museum, New York, 1968. The stand will also present work from the ‘Variable Painting’ series, such as Seascape, 1966, which was exhibited at the Venice Biennale and Natural Elements, a work made with spiral neon lights.
As Grisi explains, ‘I was interested in exploring the idea of variability, in making a painting that allowed viewers to change the image as they liked. Each painting has two or more sliding panels of painted canvas and coloured Plexiglass that can be moved by the viewer to create different superimpositions. In ‘Neon Paintings’, neon, metal and wood were added, moving the works out from the wall and into the space.’
Germano Celant in Laura Grisi’s monograph says she was one of the first artists to work in neon, evoking the culture of advertising and commercial design.
The works presented at Spotlight create the effect of night space in which people’s shadows move on unknown errands, coming and going in an urban environment of glowing neon signs and glancing reflections.