On May 6 2017, Galleria Varsi presents “Mercy”, the first Italian show by the artist Evoca1, a Dominican figurative painter, currently resident in Miami.
The artist researches human conflicts and reveals them in public spaces, where his personal history and his vision take shape.
“Misericordia ” (Mercy) is a 12th century dueling dagger with a triangular blade, which thanks to its structure and sturdiness was able to go through armors. The name derives from the function that it historically covered; the dagger brought death to opponents on battlefields, sparing the fallen from agony and giving them death. A dramatic image that embodies a precious value: in the irreconcilability of a clash, death and suffering generate responsibilities towards every man.
The artist analyzes a key sentiment of Ancient Rome, the pietas, which was sung by Virgil in Aeneid and developed in the figure of “Pius Aeneas”. This value expresses all the duties men have towards humankind, their families and the gods. This is not a natural disposition of the human soul, but must be cultivated daily with devotion and diligence. Pietas pushes men out of themselves, one towards the other, between heaven and earth.
But is it really possible to talk about pietas today? What does the “other” represent for us?
“Mercy” derives from these questions by bringing to the spaces of Galleria Varsi thoughts on an extinct virtue, now more necessary than ever.
Mercy has always been a necessary emotion that has been practiced by few and yearned by many. If we look back to our history, there has always been this constant battle for power and resources, where the strongest fight amongst each other for total control and the less privileged fight to survive at their mercy. This has been the constant cycle of humanity and is always present as a relevant issue. The show “Mercy” is a metaphor for the reflection of our current time”.
The artist rejects the cultural and political context in which he lives, where a missing alienated individual is incapable of meeting, joining other people, and urges us to rediscover the true meaning of the word community (from the Latin communitas: cum munus ), mistakenly interpreted from current thought: “The munus that a communitas shares is not a property or a belonging. It is not a having something, but, on the contrary, a debt, a pledge, a gift-to-give”, as stated by the philosopher Roberto Esposito.
Our education does not end in independence, but is fulfilled in the infinite exercise of dependence, of continuity with others.
The artist reminds us that the biological project of human beings, unlike other species, requires others to develop, to complete, to survive (or die).
Curated by Chiara Pietropaoli
Sponsor: Birra del Borgo
Partner: Ex Dogana Roma, Blind Eye Factory, Trasformazioni Urbane, 56 Fili