Enrico Cazzaniga

Since 1997 Enrico Cazzaniga has been experimenting the possibilities of a distinctive pictorial technique that reflects his interest in defining a visual universe that can be attained through progressive ‘subtraction’ of material and space. According to the artist, ‘removal’ is an act of cleansing, a sort of aesthetic ecology, also in a spiritual sense. Cazzaniga paints exclusively on canvases made from black moleskin, a cotton fabric commonly used in clothing manufacture. In his hands the cloth is transformed into a film-like medium sensitive to his paintbrush, because the artist works with a diluted solution of sodium hypochlorite, conventionally known as bleach, instead of using traditional paints. Cazzaniga constructs his realistic iconographies with only his careful modulation of this chemical reagent – except for in rare cases in which he highlights important elements of the image with watersoluble coloured pencils. After sketching out the image on the moleskin, the artist begins lightening some areas in order to create highlights, leaving the rest of the fabric intact. The bleach, in various dilutions with water, blanches the corduroy where needed, leaving the parts of the image that are not illuminated in shadow. (…) The artist “removes” material in order to introduce light. (…) He leaves a historical trace of his last and inevitable gesture, because once his brush has touched the fabric, corrections cannot be made.

Ivan Quaroni