ON MAKING A CIRCLE TO SWIM UNDER WATER by Rä di Martino at Collicalireggi gallery, Catania
On Making a Circle to Swim Under Water is an exhibition by Rä di Martino opening at Collicaligreggi gallery in Catania on the 3rd of October. For her first solo exhibition in Sicily the Roman artist has taken inspiration from the John Cheever’s 1964 famous short story “The Swimmer”. A cult short story also thanks to the 1968 film in which a still handsome Burt Lancaster plays a successful 50 year-old man who swims from pool to pool in his county to return home only to discover to his astonishment that he is a failed man.
In her project in Catania, Rä di Martino inspired by part of the story which describes, the character realizes a video work: On Making a Circle to Swim Under Water and also a series of works that refer more directly to the swimming pool.
The video is a study of the face of a man standing at the centre of the scene. A single tracking shot that reveals a sort of a “casting mistake” through the use of stage lighting and the dialogues of the crew, the director and the cinematographer that become sort off screen characters as well. A casting mistake or as in the story, a failure.
The series of works The Art of Swimming are instead inspired by the book also titled The Art of Swimming by Monsieur Thevenot published in 1696, with very naïve and ironic advice and drawings on how to swim.
These images are printed on raw cotton and mounted on closed and hanging beach deck-chairs of the 1950s. In her latest production Rä di Martino reaffirms her interest in the representation of a reality suspended between the objective everyday life and the fiction of visual languages. A game in which the limits one cannot always perceive, inducing an equally sensory and emotional perception of failure, but at the same time full of pathos.