Abstract Art, Contemporary Art in the Media
Feature on Meander
Exhibition of paintings with a social theme
Translated from Maltese to English: Following a long working career as a professional engineer, Ray Piscopo is now fully committed to his art. This time the artist choses to exhibit contemporary art with a social dimension. This social aspect weighs on him for a long time. It worries him even more now and he hopes that a solution is found locally and internationally.
The paintings he exhibits show situations of domestic violence and immigration. For example, homeless persons without a roof, personal loss of loved ones, wars and conflicts. In addition, the scourge of children forced into heavy labour, rather than attending school. In other paintings, he reflects on poverty and the consequences of wrong decisions.
Through these works, Piscopo exposes the negativity of life. He proposes that people should search for the ‘light’ and choose to follow it. That way, problems and difficult life situations can be overcome.
The paintings, in oils and acrylics on canvas have vibrant colours, but without a clear-cut definition. This style, which is quite unique, creates a sensation of abstraction combined with realism. The human being is shown to be suffering from consequences of current circumstances. They are seemingly powerless to change destiny.
Art Exhibition at the Italian Cultural Institute, Malta
ITALIAN MASTERPIECES and more...
24 January 2014 - 7 February 2014
Translated from Maltese to English: Few are the artists who, while creating art works that represent the human figure and their current situations, create perspectives and nuances that are so far from reality. The paintings by artist Ray Piscopo create a new dimension of masterpieces created by old masters like Caravaggio and Mattia Preti, with the underlying primary theme of the ‘love of life’.
The contrast of colours, a characteristic of Caravaggio, inspires Piscopo significantlyn his works. Piscopo gives a live spiritual dimension to his religious paintings avoiding to look at the popular representation of biblical events, creating compositions which are not only relevant to the scene depicted in the painting but are also tied to the human experience.
Piscopo states that artistic impressions frees him from the strict adherence to dogmas in the religious belief. This is because many feel they must commit to these beliefs or embrace blindly without feeling the need to ask questions to seek the truth. Art gives him the opportunity not to be tied to the infallibility of any creed without looking deeply into the episodes where Jesus was protagonist.
Piscopo had his first encounters in art with one of Malta’s foremost artists Antoine Camilleri. The latter left a strong imprint on Malta’s recent artistic history. Piscopo attended workshops on mosaics in Ravenna, Italy and in masterclasses in Austria (Hubert Scheible) and Venice (the late Amadou Sow).
Art Exhibition at the Corinthia Palace Hotel & Spa- Malta
BEYOND THE BODY …. the soul
7 December 2013 – 7 Jan 2014
Translated from Maltese to English: "Artist Ray Piscopo who is exhibiting paintings in Attard, Malta, was largely inspired by master like Caravaggio, Da Vinci, Van Gogh, and Picasso to create his works. Using modern techniques, Piscopo was not tied down to straight imitation. He created a new dimension in these paintings by the play and use of colours to create a modern mood of human existence. This is not only because Piscopo wanted to go deep into the human soul. By bringing out the themes with definite lines, and by using colour gradations to create the environment, he manages to bring out the subject better." EV Borg (curator)
The best element in Piscopo’s oeuvres is universality, because he focuses on the human being. In his painting showing maternity (a woman with child), for instance, he wants to remind us of the Madonna and Child. Because although he shows a typical mother nursing a child, he shows us the background beyond the window; there is a bleak future and tragedy for her child.
It goes without saying that a mother’s love for her child is the strongest love one can find, and in this work it is felt strongly, because Ray brings out the sentiment, the emotion. He understands, and is one to forgive, and that therefore he looks at the human being not so much as when the persons falters and falls, but moreso considering the person as a hero.
Ray Piscopo states that he wants to create movement and action in his works and likes to use pure and vibrant colours. On the other hand he makes sure that everything is placed in order, even when he creates abstract works. Piscopo states that it is in his personality to discover that which is unknown so that he will interpret what he feels and understands using the painting mediums on canvas.
Art Exhibition – The Reasoning of the Imagination
Cavalieri Arts Hotel, St Julians Malta
12 December – 15 January 2015
Translated from Maltese to English: Ray Piscopo created a series of paintings of which subjects evoke a particular reflection on that which is ‘divine’. Piscopo is trying to find a reason through the imagination. His paintings are now displayed at a prominent hotel in St. Julians (Malta).
Though his paintings in oils on canvas, Ray Piscopo created works that are aesthetically beautiful and pleasant to see, but forces the imagination to use reason to make reality be seen in another different dimension.
Piscopo plays with forms to elevate the human form above the environment surrounding it. He uses vibrant colours and defined lines. For this, after the artist formalizes in his mind the forms he wants to paint, he imparts to the scene an intellectual meaning; because he creates around it a scenery that complements the human form.
For Piscopo art needs a moral justification; art is not for art’s sake. Art is there to impart a message, an impression, an experience and goes beyond the obvious. Although this art may be classified as being realistic, is it not strictly factual, as the artist combines imaginary components to realistic forms.
Piscopo’s art indicates an important phase in his career, displaying inward looking and experimental traits. This shows that the artist is still on his journey. In fact, he ‘seeks’ to move forward learning from experience, present situations and the perspective of what the future may bring. In order for the artist to contribute to those in need he will be donating one of his exhibited works to the President of Malta. Proceeds will go to the Malta Community Chest Fund.
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