A STAIRCASE FOR MEMLING
Urso’s work was installed in close dialogue with Giovanni Testori’s Art Library, which had reached the end of its re-organisation. The large library, located at the base of the staircase, contains monographs on medieval and modern artists up to the 18th century. Urso’s work flourished among the volumes and climbed up the stairs to the first floor, making the grand staircase a tribute to the German painter Hans Memling (1430-1494) and his famous Last Judgement, the so-called Gdansk Triptych (circa 1470).
Arranged between the books, nine dioramas rendered the composition: from Christ the judge – powerful enough not to retain his strength within the glass – to saved, purging and damned souls. In these little magic theatres (Stations of the Cross, 2016), the images of the Triptych acquired the third dimension thanks to seemingly extraneous elements, which brought them back to a domestic temperament. In the series along the stairs (A study on The Last Judgment of Hans Memling, 2015/2016), nature became stepmotherly and, replacing the flames in a function that was anything but decorative, did not slow down the torments of the damned but participated in their subjective suffering.