Massimo Bartolini: Studio Matters + 1
- Neil Cooper
- 19 February 2013
Large scale sculpture and miniatures from Italian artist
Like a moth to a flame, the habitual party-goer will always be drawn to Kraftwerkian big-city neon. So it goes in ‘La Strada di Sotto' (The Street Below), the toytown-style installation that maps out the whole of the Fruitmarket’s main downstairs room in Italian artist Massimo Bartolini’s first solo exhibition in Scotland.
A working model culled from frameworks of lights used during Sicilian street celebrations, this complex network of criss-crossing tracklines is operated by the rise and fall of voices from the film in the adjoining room. The fact that the figure onscreen is Don Valentino, the man behind Sicily’s mass illuminations, speaks volumes of the light and shade intensity of what looks like a denser, Michael Bentine’s Potty Time version of Blackpool in all its after-dark glory.
Upstairs, there’s a similar sense of playfulness to the large table-top filled with out-of context looking miniatures picked and mixed from Bartolini’s studio: the scaled-down Buddhist monk says it all. If the carnival mash-up of sculpture and civic pride downstairs is anything to go by, the throbbing heart of the city just got brighter.
Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh until Sun 14 Apr