Richard Silvaggio was born in Melbourne (Australia) 15/2/76. He enrols at the Fine art academy of Carrara and he graduates with highest honors, writing a thesis entitled “Freak show, the ugly and the diabolic in art from middle ages to Contemporary art”, with Omar Galliani as a supervisor.
His artistic path begins following grotesque themes, combining physical objects, installations, to the paintings, (often represented by ugly and awkward characters), in order to gain major completeness to the work’s concept. Later on he decides to put aside the bizarre aspects, to concentrate on a much more delicate and figurative line. The female figure, movement and the body’s elegance become for the artist an important cornerstone. He completely abandons the use of colors for the monochromatic image. The brilliance of his paintings can be found in the skillful and elegant use of the “none color”. In fact, Richard manages to create impressive chiaroscuro effects using exclusively black and white oil colors that transform his figures into sculptural images.
His last works, which he calls “The archetype of nothing”, are hidden identities, fluctuating in an undefined space, unworldly and harmonic female figures, sometimes imposing images as if to demonstrate that it’s the soul that imposes and not the materiality of the body.
Richard gives us his poetic vision of the sub consciousness, in a series of oil paintings, some on wood, and some on canvas. Just like childhood ghost vision archetypes, his works are populated by white cloths suspended in emptiness, capable of astonishing the observer while they float in nothing, or while resting, allowing to see the silhouette of whom it belongs to, without revealing the aspect. The artist deals with the description of soft grey cloths, from white to the very black, bringing on to “grisailles”, never boring, never expected, supported by a strong spiritual/conceptual base.
Work / Education
THE ARCHETYPE OF NOTHING
I felt the need, in the course of time, to identify an essential code: the desire, maybe the urge, to push my work towards a formula of synthesis capable of expressing the drawings of my thoughts in a clean and instant attractiveness. I sacrificed the use of color. I wanted to reduce the variables, to go along the inside conflict of my conscious state on a graphic level. In other words, the operation might unveil ingenuous reflexes, but the tension that pushes the thought to the extreme limit of contradiction is precisely human. We are not able to imagine death: it does not produce images. We are also unable to crystalize the source of our thinking process, the self, therefore the fundament of life. I grasp my being as a transaction between two essential conditions that, however, I cannot see. And it’s between these two extremities, in a recursive ring, that my thinking substance consumes. I am, we are, the grey tone that elapses between black and white. The same grey that gives volume to the draperies I paint, draperies that in turn give volume to an empty figure that reveals in truth the absence during the act of searching and self-questioning. The challenge, in my opinion, is to reach to an intrinsic beauty of image, that yes, conveys a content, but a content that, as a last extreme paradox, expresses the inexpressible: nothing.
All works (unless specified otherwise) are for sale. Email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org