Alessandra Ferrini 

The exhibition opens with an installation created by Alessandra Ferrini specifically for Casa Testori, an eco system of clues and references regarding the visual culture and  critical activity of Giovanni Testori. This is a seminal work in relation to the exhibition as a whole, in that it documents the theoretical approach characterising the entire process, based on construction of a series of visual assonances, historic references and new cultural and historical relations. In this specific case, we find a number of articles written by Testori in “Corriere della Sera” about African art and a series of digital compositions in which a number of details of modern paintings appear. Alessandra Ferrini’s reflection is inspired by Carlo Ginzburg’s essay Morelli, Freud and Sherlock Holmes: Clues and Scientific Method1, in which the famous historian compares famous art historian Giovanni Morelli, Sherlock Holmes and Sigmund Freud, revealing the incomplete arbitrariness of a method of investigation based on the detail and the fragment, whether it be in a painting or in a criminal case. This arbitrariness also characterises the “realist” hegemony of western art history over the cultures we have colonised, which, as Testori points out in his articles, cannot be reduced to European epistemological systems. From this point of view, Ferrini’s work itself becomes a network of clues, in which fragments of paintings, a photograph cut in half of Roberto Longhi holding a magnifying lens and material from Testori’s archive (including letters asking the critic about attribution of a painting to Daniele Crespi) suggest a different point of view from which viewers can read about and approach art history, its limitations and the hegemonic mechanisms it has triggered and continues to trigger.

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Posted on: 15 November 2021, by : Alessandro Ulleri