Friday, April 14, 2006

Paolo Ventura: War Souvenir

Paolo Ventura: War Souvenir at Hasted Hunt Gallery. "...There is something very Italian, or perhaps more accurately, Latin about the way that tragedy and dark comedy mingle in these images. The fashions of the wounded and the dead - the dressing up of the corpse in an outfits that its owner so proudly wore during his lifetime - evokes the catacombs the Capuchin Fathers in Palermo, where row after row of the dead display the raiments of their worldly existence so that the doctors and lawyers, priests and professors, soldiers and society women still retain their professional and social identities, even if they no longer are in possession of their flesh. It's a terrifying and somehow comical place where the rictus grin of death often seems like a smile, and where in one famous pairing a skeleton man and wife appear to have continued their lifelong conversation, centuries after death."


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