Fireworks, 2011, video still
Anna Kustera Gallery is pleased to present a second solo exhibition of the work of Mattia Biagi. For “Someone Told Me Never to Do It”, the Italian born artist presents a new body of work, one that utilizes a variety of mediums from sculpture to video as well as painting and photography. Here, Biagi endeavors to make tangible an array of nuanced and culturally significant beliefs in supernatural causality. Repetition and avoidance have long been a part of superstitious rituals worldwide. By utilizing objects and substances often endowed with superstitious associations — mirrors, ladders, salt — the artist unravels fears and stimulates emotions. Viewers are invited to interact directly with the works, and the gallery itself becomes a meditative space in which sanctified rites are examined for what they reveal as much as their restrictive qualities. Biagi’s respect for history and his cultural anthropologist’s curiosity give provocative context on ancient spiritual solutions and the resolute nature of contemporary fear.
Mattia Biagi was born in Ravenna, Italy, in 1974, and graduated from the Italian art and design school, I.R.F.A. in Milan. Soon after graduation, Biagi moved to Los Angeles and was immediately impressed by one of the city’s most famous landmarks, the La Brea Tar Pits, which became the influence for his initial body of work in the U.S. His work has been exhibited internationally, most notably at the Castello di Rivara in Turin, Italy, and the Mint Museum in Charlotte, North Carolina, who recently acquired Biagi’s sculpture, Before Midnight, for the Museum’s permanent collection.