Venice: Marcin Gierat
September 5 - October 10
Marcin Gierat, Portrait of Luigi Lucchetta, CEO Barovier&Toso, 2019. Fotografia al Collodio Umido su vetro di Murano. 25×25 cm. Courtesy of the artist and Zuecca Projects, Venice
“MAN IN THE GLASS”
On the occasion of The Venice Glass Week 2020, the Venetian organization Zuecca Projects is glad to present the exhibition “Man in the Glass” by Marcin Gierat, curated by Marica Denora and Alessandro Possati. The exhibition will be hosted at Squero Castello, from September 5 to October 10, 2020.
Involving in the project a selection of historical and prestigious furnaces from Murano – Barovier&Toso, NasonMoretti, Schiavon Art Team – Polish artist Marcin Gierat has created a photographic series that celebrates the great artisanal tradition of Murano glass-makers: a series of portraits of the masters, directly captured on glass plates made by them.
Through the Wet-Collodion process, an early photographic technique, and the use of a camera from the XIX Century, Gierat realizes his pictures on glass plates, instead of photographic film. The result is a unique work that can’t be reproduced.
Each furnace involved in the project created its specific series of glass plates, with its characteristic techniques and iconic colours. The glass plates produced have been used as the capture medium of their portraits.
Resulting artworks can be consider as “photographic objects” with a multifaceted meaning: they communicate their sense to the viewers not only through the pictures of the Glass Masters, but through the glass plates too. A double-portrait in which the image of the represented man and the characteristics of his glass, reveal the identity of the subject. The series is a celebration of the artisanal creation: it pays tribute to some of the best Glass Masters from Murano, adopting a photographic technique that is an artisanal process itself.
At the center of the project there are the Men, guardians of the know-how that keeps the artisanal practice alive, and a recovered relationship with the Time, essential to create and appreciate an artwork.
Included in the exhibition, the short-movie made by Illumina Film and directed by Alessandro Possati and Marcin Gierat, focused on the simple as well as unique daily life of the masters, between the furnaces and the streets of Murano. Through the film you can discover the men and values that lead each creation. You can discover the unique heritage of each involved furnaces: from the excellence and passion for the relationship between light and glass of the oldest furnace of Murano, Barovier&Toso; to the celebration of tradition and design innovation of NasonMoretti; passing through the bold experimentation of the artistic furnace Schiavon Art Team.
In a time characterized by the overabundance of images, the immateriality of the digital realm and a increasingly rush to experience the world, Gierat’s photographic works offer us a pause of contemplation. Contemplation is necessary to observe the portraits, to discover the surface they are imprinted on and how the glass interacts with the images. In “Man in the Glass” the “analogical mastery” of photographic creation predominantly returns not only in the dynamics of its creation (through the Wet-Collodion process), but also in the craftsmanship of its support (the Murano glass plates on which the images are imprinted on).
The project is a reconquest of the luxury of time. A time that is necessary to create glass from the fire, to shot a portrait that comes to life from a chemical reaction, and to appreciate that unique “aura” of the works of art.