Rimembranze: dal bacio del Canova alla Salita al Calvario di Bosch….2009-1029 1/4 x 32 in. oil on canvas


The painting, inspired by Antonio Canova’s sculpture Psyche Revived by Cupid’s Kiss, and Christ Carrying the Cross by Hieronymous Bosch, depicts a laureate male and a female enmeshed in a boa of roses. Canova’s sculpture represents Cupid and Psyche during an emotionally charged moment, in which Cupid awakens Psyche from death. His tender embrace is mimicked in this painting, however Psyche, appearing more realistic than sculpture-like, looks on. Hieronymous Bosch’s grotesque painting of Christ while he carries the cross looms over Cupid’s head. The grotesque work of Bosch is at odds with the Neoclassical inspiration from Canova, perhaps to convey the dark emotions that simmer beneath the façade of love.

Similar Artworks

Pablo Picasso paints a portrait of his sitter Giorgio De Chirico in a room filled with classical antiquities, neoclassical sculptures and impressionist paintings. The artist dreams of his own glory, which is symbolized by the masterpieces in the room – the statue of Victory by Michelangelo, an Impressionist artwork leaning in a corner, and the painting behind the sitter that symbolizes human knowledge. Yet, this is all meant ironically. De Chirico only sits in for Pellegrini himself, who mocks his own fears and phobias, by sitting in a room in which every person and artwork in the painting have already achieved their glory. 
<br>“Yes, irony is one of the elements of my painting. I make fun of myself and my neurotic fears and phobias and I turn the situation with ironic if not at times hilarious details. I placed a cat, for example, with phosphorescent eyes in a bucolic scene, or in the subject of Carnival I mix death, ridicule and joking.” (Antonio Monda, “Interview with Max Pellegrini,” in Max Pellegrini, ed. Danilo Eccher, 2014


A young man and woman embrace one another, a woman holds a child, a sleeping baby holds a black and red thread, another young woman undresses, and an angel spreads its wings in this collage like composition. Together, these characters create a narrative in which young love, fate, and life are intertwined: the sleeping baby holds a red thread and black thread, reminiscent of the mythological three Fates, who spun life and death on their loom. These threads are physically connected to the young lovers, who embrace each other, wholly unaware of the hold that the infant has on them. A woman holding a child watches over the love of the youthful boy and girl, just as Mary and Jesus watch over and defend mankind. The merging of narratives and symbols is a common element in Pellegrini’s oeuvre, and is masterfully expressed here.


MASSIMO VITALI - Viareggio - c-print mounted on plexiglass - 59 1/8 x 73 1/2 in.


Mirror images of a cloaked figure embrace a bare-chested and bearded man, who is almost child-like in his relative stature. Their embrace mirrors that of Michelangelo’s Pieta, and the many similar depictions of Christ and the Madonna. A dark shade of blue casts a shadow over the composition, assuredly a temporal indicator, but possibly a reference to Picasso’s blue period as well, a major influencer on Pellegrini’s artwork. The wall panels behind the figures depict religious scenes, and remind the viewer of stained glass walls in churches and chapels. Light shines from windows in the city below, also illuminated by a full moon peaking over mountainous scenery.


In an abstracted image of St. Peter’s basilica in Rome, Pellegrini returns to religious narratives to express his “anti-ideological and anti-pauperist” impression of the church and its relationship with faith (Antonio Monda, “Interview with Max Pellegrini). In the lower half of the painting, the birth of Jesus is the central focus, while the life of the church is highlighted in the upper half. According to Pellegrini, he depicted the birth of Jesus in the style of a baroque 18th century Neapolitan nativity scene that can be interpreted “as a feast for the birth of faith.” This faith is conceived of as “the material support for the Popes’ power and of the Church’s glory,” represented in this painting by the Pope clutching the moon in his hand. 
<br>- Partial text adapted from Max Pellegrini, July 2015, in conversation with Curator Chip Tom


Hand blown glass with multiple incalmo of colored glass and filligrana. Switching the axel of the glass bubble and adjoining two glass bubbles with raticallo technique. Engraved partially on the surface with different patterns.
<br>Lino Tagliapietra, a native to Murano, is one of the world's preeminent glass artists.


MARINO MARINI - Untitled (From Shakespeare I) - lithograph - 29 1/2 x 22 in.