Oil and graphite on paper and digital video animation, 2020
The first version of Cerami’s art project is unusually intimate.
Primarily realized with oil plates later transposed into a video installation, the work records and represents the artist’s creative process in the act of redesigning the world.
An instinctive and hectic universe that reorganizes itself according to a logic of connection, transmission and dialogue.
Tracing a plan of the southern walls of Castel dell’Ovo (Naples) on large sheets of paper, Cerami develops a narrative that unfolds through multiple juxtapositions. His hands at work divide and multiply, generating a visual simultaneity that reflects an original mixture of a both cyclical and linear temporality that breaks the boundaries of space and time.
His aesthetic experiments exceed any traditional communication mode and enhance the perceptive capacity of the viewer.
No longer merely contemplative, the artistic expression succeeds here in effectively translating the artist’s idea into an experience accessible to the public.
The symbols of Neapolitanism recur, outlined by scratches, cuts and lines that define and then erase, only to start all over again, in a motion that emulates the determination of a rhythmically redesigned city, evoking a warped plan of ascents and descents, like a phoenix that rises from its own ashes.
The esoteric power of the Lord Vesuvius, the distal soul of the city and an ambivalent divinity that alternates fertility and protection with scourge and punishment is here reimagined in a contemporary key to interpret its wonder and fierceness.
The iconic features of San Gennaro , patron and protector of the city, are imperative for he represents an omnipresent figure in the actuality and in the imagination of the Neapolitan people as the arbiter and the impartial judge of the fate of the many and the few.
The divine being who rewards or condemns the merits and faults of his faithful with miracles or misfortunes, between paganism and Christianity.
By drawing the effigy of the saint, Cerami designs a new image yet faithful to the original, which he multiplies infinitely as invariable and yet iridescent … Finally, the ear of wheat, the gold of Naples and of all people, a ray of sunshine represented and praised by man since the age of cave paintings, a primary element of prosperity and abundance that generates political, social and economic stability.
The sites and legends of Naples are an essential part of its inhabitants life and are often known to foreigners, although they are rarely elaborated on a conscious level or in rational terms.
With this project, Franz Cerami generates a personal narrative translation aimed at revealing the equation that integrates the past with the present. A city that plunges into contemporary existence by embracing its history and a human reality whose vestiges “en plein air” are hidden in the heart of the buildings and courtyards, protected from the popular buzz but accessible to all those who bear the wisdom to penetrate its passages and alleys.