Deborah Martino 29.jun 2022—21.jul 2022

Deborah Martino 29.jun 2022—21.jul 2022

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Photo: Alberto Messina


After "Notes For Dried and Living Bodies in Corso Umberto," an intervention by Luca Trevisani presented in collaboration with Pinksummer Contemporary Art in Genoa, "PICCOLO CELESTE" is the first episode of the second edition of the exhibition schedule dedicated to young emerging artists, coordinated this year by Giulia Menegale and realized in dialogue with Luca Trevisani, who selected the four artists participating in the project.

For this first solo exhibition, Deborah Martino brings her expressive practice to the stage, transforming Platea's showcase into a gateway to another world: a dimension that, in her intentions, approaches the cosmos and transcends common materiality. Evoked by the title "PICCOLO CELESTE," this dimension is populated by about thirty sculptures that Martino has specially modeled for Platea using plasticine and clay, with the addition of tissue paper to give them color. These are body-sculptures, relics, and remains, some standing, others lying on the Platea floor, with care and delicacy. Supported by a skeleton of twine and wire, Martino's body-sculptures appear fragile and on the verge of disappearing before the visitor's eyes. Now dissolving into the organic and fluid forms that characterize them, now falling into fragments. On the surface of the sculptures, the traces of the artist's fingers remain evident, revealing the slow process of creation that generated them within the fictional world created by Platea's showcase. Martino's practice, in fact, focuses on the constant attempt to transcend her own carnal and individual dimension through a progressive "metabolization of the self," as the artist defines it. Through the development of a personalized form of automatic writing, the artist conceives figures capable of articulating the various stages that define the common experience of a body: its potential for procreation, its decay, and its dissolution into another body. With her artistic research, which primarily includes writing, pastel drawing, and sculpture, Martino seems to suggest that new modes of relationship between bodies can arise, first and foremost, from a voluntary renunciation of what would otherwise conclude in the sphere of the individual and, therefore, the individual. Transcending our limitations, marked by the boundaries of our flesh-body, the artist suggests, we can rediscover an innate capacity for openness to the other, the person next to us, useful for rebuilding a conception of alliance and affiliation beyond any social structure or predetermined bond.


Deborah Martino currently lives and works in Turin. Since 2020, she has worked as an assistant for the artist Paolo Cirio. In 2021, she graduated in the three-year Multimedia Arts program at the Iuav University of Venice. Her work has been exhibited in the following shows: UNCOATED-CONTENT, Mucho-Mas! Artist run space, Turin (IT); LAB1 ArtVerona, Verona (IT); Esterno Notte, CAMERA – Italian center for photography, Turin (IT); DISFA, LINK, Bologna (IT). Her research focuses mainly on bodies, organic and non-organic, analyzing them through experimental processes and metamorphosis. Crossing various media, from drawing to sculpture to diary writing, her practice aims at the deconstruction of the physical body to search for new forms and identities contained within it, akin to the concept of the cosmological body. Starting from the analysis of the relationships and fusions that occur between bodies, Martino suggests a new idea of a collective family, identifying it in a united body that moves together with all the energy of the cosmos.


Giulia Menegale is an independent curator and researcher. She completed a Master's in Contemporary Art Theory at Goldsmiths, University of London, in 2020, and a Bachelor's in Multimedia Arts at Iuav (University of Architecture of Venice) in 2018. Currently, she is a PhD candidate in Museum Studies at IMT in Lucca. She has collaborated as a curatorial, editorial, and research assistant with Looking Forward C.I.C. (London, UK), Castello di Rivoli – Museum of Contemporary Arts (Turin, IT), Island gallery (Brussels, BE), and Taryn Simon Projects (New York, US). Her articles have been published by WCS/CD (Belgrade, RS), Subbcultcha (Amsterdam, NL), Artillery Mag (L.A., US), and other academic journals. She has participated in the following residencies and curatorial courses: Bagni d'Aria (Turin, IT), Salzburg Summer Academy (Salzburg, AT), IMMA- Art and Politics Summer School (Dublin, IE), Unidee, Fondazione Pistoletto (Biella, IT), and Ramdom (Lecce, IT). She will be a fellow at CuratorLab in Stockholm for the 2022-23 edition. Currently, she collaborates with Âyiné, a Brazilian independent publishing house, for the production of a series of art and theory books. Using an intersectional perspective and developing an analysis of reality through affect theory and institutional analysis, Menegale's research focuses on the epistemological value of negative emotions and their potential role in the subject formation processes, beyond overarching social paradigms internalized by individuals.