Cristiano Pintaldi’s Lucid Dreams is his first major exhibition in Venice and showcases large scale acrylic paintings that cover a selection of appropriated mass-media imagery and delve into universally recognised images of entertainment, power, religion and nature. Pintaldi exhibits, in uniform RGB points, video-still type images of Stanley Kubrick’s eyes wide shut; an image of the famous TV series Star Trek; an image of a UFO taken from Mexican police in the 90’s; young Buddhist monks; U.S Presidents; the Opus Dei (Pope Benedetto XVI, Joseph Ratzinger) at the funeral of the Pope Wojtyla; three little shepherds of Fatima; a sighting of an unidentified flying object filmed by a public webcam in Washington DC; a Lightning bolt on a volcano in Iceland; The Norwegian Svalbard islands on which all the plant species of Earth are kept; and a video portrait of the World Bank president, Bob Zoellick.
The paintings consist of RGB (red- green- blue) pixels that form an anamolous perception, allowing the eye to interpret both the form of the image and the pointillist RGB tessellations, thus oscillating between varying levels of reality. The very name Lucid Dreams refers to the artist’s belief that human existence is like a dream where we are the actor and director in our own cinematic repertoire and creatively responsible for our own vision.
This follows Pintaldi’s research into pluralist realities. Pinaldi purports that we exist in a accordance with our personal reality which runs parallel and in compromise with the universally legitimised univocal perspective created by the media: which since the 1950’s have played an increasing role in shaping our collective psyche. For Pintaldi, the ultimate conclusion is that there are as many different realities as there are people in existence and that these abundant realities are mediated through the jurisdiction of mass media. Through this double entendre and pictorial breakdown, a highly elaborate artistic study emerges that examines our ability to define and perceive reality and in doing so, questions the very perception of our existence within the distinctive perceptual code of video broadcast.
Cristiano Pintaldi lives and works between London and Rome and has been exhibiting internationally since the early 90’s. The exhibition is installed in San Pietro di Castello, between the Arsenale and the Biennale Giardini, in a disused industrial premises hosting a contemporary art exhibition for the first time. Lucid Dreams is accompanied by a monograph of Cristiano Pintaldi’s work published by Silvana Editoriale with text by Achille Bonito Oliva and James Putnam.
Lucid Dreams is an official Collateral Event of the 54th Biennale di Venezia. Curated by Achille Bonito Oliva and is organised by Opera Rebis: a not for profit association based in Rome with financial support of BONATO Milano 1960.
Cristiano Pintaldi: Lucid Dreams. Curated by Achille Bonito Oliva. Venue: Ex Cantiere Navale, San Pietro di Castello, Venice. 4th June – 31st October 2011
Image: Photo by Maria Enquist
Text: Nadine Talalla