Art All Friends Of Emilio Gola
Artpainting

All Friends Of Emilio Gola

Giorgia Massari
emilio gola

I saw his work a few months ago at the Triennale, part of the group exhibition curated by Damiano Gullì dedicated to painting. I had actually seen it some time before at the home of a friend who owns a huge canvas of his, a portrait that Emilio Gola (1994, Milan) made of him and another friend sitting on a chair. I bring up this example because it is emblematic of the painter’s practice. His inspiration is his friends. Watching them interact and being with them is part of his research, which tends to immortalize the life of a generation, his, mine, of everyone born between the 1990s and 2000s. Somewhere between the Millennials and Gen Z, a generation struggling to find belonging and finding peace in physical contact, the only crack of tactile reality in the digital world plunged on our heads in the midst of adolescence. Today I find Emilio Gola’s figurative canvases in the Project Room of Monica De Cardenas, the Milanese contemporary art gallery near Corso Como. His new exhibition, with a critical text by Antonio Grulli, is titled Come Falene (Like Moths) and features his new series of works all in the dark. A group of friends gather around a bonfire and, as is often the case in Gola’s works, they are depicted lying, clinging, relaxed. In his narrative everything is still and at the same time open to any kind of development.

emilio gola | Collater.al

The works in this exhibition mark another step in Emilio Gola’s progress, a narrative key capable of bringing all the works together is introduced. Each painting is a kind of snapshot of a group of young people spending a night outdoors around a fire, some intent in reading thanks to a flashlight, others asleep. The scene is extremely cinematic and suggests an endless possibility in the evolution of the story. In these scenes, darkness is brightened by the fire or a light source, a nod to a distinct pictorial genre that many artists of past centuries have tried their hand at.

Antonio Grulli
emilio gola | Collater.al

The body is my word

What draws me like a moth – to quote the title of the exhibition – to Emilio Gola’s works is authenticity. In his subjects I see my friends again, the carefree, if apparent, years of study, but even more I see the silent words spoken through a caress, a hug, a light touch. If the means and ways of communication today are so infinite, the reality is that we struggle to do so or, more to the point, to speak the truth. Emilio Gola says it, though not so directly, with his canvases. The characters speak with their bodies, huddle together, seek comfort and care. In others, in themselves, and in objects, always present in his paintings. Books, candy, flowers, as well as sneakers and apt outfits capture the image of a generational sentiment.

emilio gola | Collater.al
emilio gola | Collater.al
emilio gola | Collater.al

Courtesy Emilio Gola, Monica De Cardenas

Artpainting
Written by Giorgia Massari
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