Feather and Stone

La piuma e la pietra (Feather and stone), Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Contemporanea (National Gallery of Contemporary Art), The Republic of San Marino

I believe that Vincenzo Scolamiero is extremely fond of being considered an inaccessible painter, from his pilgrim imagination to his elect and ultra-refined execution. I don’t want to deny this starting point, but it seems reductive to resolve the complexity of a mentality and of dozens of applications in the game of hiding fleeting and images that are hard to define and classify. After a long and honored career based on full-bodied figures, dense and sometimes imperious colors, in the last decade, Scolamiero has achieved a more introverted and secretive painting that tends to put an end to communication rather than open it. Whoever wants to penetrate the circle of elusive figures illuminated by improbable, cutting, phosphorescent light, had better demolish the symbolic structure and put it back together piece by piece inside himself rather than abandon himself to the fullness of the colors and figures that glimmer like jewels in the half-light. I had already realized that the spongy bodies suspended in the void like immobile meteorites had a certain “Goya-esque” something; they worked more because of the dark element, because of the subtraction of light that made them impenetrable and mysterious as idols. It was the “negra” style, the persistence of the shape inside a flexible mass that penetrates like the night into the crevices of consciousness and beauty.

Enzo Bilardello, 2005