Acrylic on Canvas
90 x 60, 160 x 120 cm
About the Work :: Mattia Guarnera’s practice is predominantly inspired by the everyday world and the human condition. It addresses contemporary themes surrounding childhood, self, dreams and stardom through the medium of iconographic imagery. He portray this through his own personal lens as a 22 year old, Londoner, mixed-race, heterosexual male. All these particularities affect the final image, formulating an outcome which is introspective yet universal. The eerily familiar imagery plays with the notion of nostalgia evoking a somewhat innate significance. Expanding beyond words. This collective meaning is subtle and can be incomprehensible, yet it is nevertheless present. Whilst it can be difficult to label. Mattia perceives this aura to be an intrinsic ‘truth,’ manifested out of our collective human experience. These notions are explored through the visual medium of sports and entertainment. He does so by capturing snapshots of interesting interactions and highlight moments. Stripping away the greater spectacle of the sports and representing them through these mundane and often overlooked scenes.
Mattia’s process of making consists of several stages, beginning with an archive of continually changing digital imagery. He repeatedly plays around with these images, changing arrangements, compositions and digital effects, until something sparks. Ensuing a series or body of work for him to exhaust. Throughout this process, he selects the outcomes which are most exciting to materialize into paintings and bring them to life on the canvas. The realization of the digital into physical form is crucial, he says, to bring him closer to his art and allow his human body and mind to truly engage with the practice. The digital world isn’t only part of Mattia’s process but a fundamental theme that is investigated within his work. Throughout all stages, he intentionally highlights the digital derivation of this art. Starting with his digital collages, He collaborates with the digital medium. Experimenting with the computerized decisions and also working with automated errors. By lessening his control over the outcome, it helps the work expand into new avenues that he may not have arrived at by his accordance. It gives Mattia’s work a small element of randomisation, with the digital medium taking on a form of divine power.
The visual language which is used throughout the work is often grounded in working class culture. This entails gaming, entertainment and sports which are all universally recognisable. The subject matter depicts arbitrary, climactic, incidental, omg moments, grounded in Mattia’s personal obsession from childhood, with highlight and fail videos. Growing up throughout the early YouTube and Social media era, was an influential source of inspiration for his work. As he states, he intentionally aims to emulate the essence and energy of the click-bait/ shit-posting contemporary culture, reappropriating it within his fine art practice. This combination of somewhat traditional painting, confined to a canvas and acrylic. Juxtaposed with the eye catching, instantly gratify-able images, creates an unique dynamic: a sort of limbo between conventional and contemporary. A portrayal of Mattia’s experienced of the world today