Fabian Marcaccio:Variants, CAAM, Centro Atlantico de Arte Moderna
Curated by Octavio Zaya
March 22-June 2, 2013
Fabian Marcaccio’s prolific career starts at the beginning of the nineties and continues until now. His singular work could be seen as a field of experimentation, research and analysis on the capability, the willpower and the resistance of the traditional medium that is “painting” to survive in our present context. By this we mean technological innovations, computing saturation and the digital era, all of which have modified deeply our way to perceive and articulate the world we live in.
Variants attempts to bring us closer to the variants of Marcaccio’s generative and multiple universe. It is a universe in constant change, which the artist has developed step by step, conceptually, physically and visually, as a response to pictorial entropy.
Marcaccio has gone beyond the conventions of painting and painterly flatness –which he used to deal with during his Abstract Expressionism period, when he decided to live in New York in the eighties–. He has developed a challenging and rigorous practice that ranges from transfer prints and digital and industrial techniques to the pictorial processes involved in spatial concerns and their expansion into the realms of sculpture and architecture. The result is a painting practice that is in constant expansion: sometimes environmental, sometimes three-dimensional and definitely sculptural, sometimes in the form of animation and on many other occasions as transition and mutation.
During the nineties, Marcaccio started to develop what he called “Paintants”, a term that he created from the fusion between “painting” and “mutant”. From that moment onwards, this Argentine artist began a de-construction –or a sort of dis-bodiment– of the pictorial practice, inspired by the dynamic relationship (sometimes collapsed) between elements and overcrowdings that attract and string one another, link up and get activated in time and space. Sometimes the artist shows us the frames of the piece, resorts to sackcloth and other fabrics, photographic images and media references, and applies different media over digitally printed surfaces. Marcaccio uses oil paintings and acrylic, silicon and sand, ropes and structures made of plastic, wood and aluminum. He also uses brushstrokes saturated with color, white or colorless silicon, and sticks them to the surface and the schemes and nets in his works, or extends them from these to the walls, the floor or the air itself.
The excess that results from Marcaccio’s painterly surfaces –something that moves between growth and decadence–, is never stable. The surface events change all the time and we cannot grasp the work either as a whole or as a unity. On the contrary, the way Marcaccio’s work spreads out suggests multiplicity and crowding, physically and visually speaking. The constant change we often mention is visible, above all, in his gigantic environmental pieces, which ooze an architectural style, and in his so called Structural Canvas Paintants. In turn, physicality and visual excess, and his ever growing sculptural tendency are even more evident in his most recent tableaus and in his “rope paintings”. It is precisely for his sculptural quality that he was granted the famous Bernhard Heiliger Award for Sculpture.
In his works of the latest years, Marcaccio seems keen on dealing with contemporary issues and images referring to society, economy and politics –which includes everything, from bank crises to terrorism–. His works compose a hallucinatory and kaleidoscopic contemporary history, pervaded by the media saturation of our times, particularly in the United States. His main sources are internet and the newspapers. In all of these pieces, the idea that prevails is the same recurring allegory that can be found in the whole of Marcaccio’s work: the breakdown of the subject and the fragmentation of the body. Everything seems to take place within a sort of explosion that provokes a pictorial otherness and makes clear, once more, that autonomy is nothing but a fallacy.
-Octavio Zaya, 2013