METACORPO by Zoè Gruni
METACORPO by Zoè Gruni
helmet, jute, sorghum, 2009
Metacorpo sculpture is closely linked to a video (namesake) where the human figure loses its identity, with an anatomical fragmentation wrought by cuts and the first pans of the video camera, and reverts to an almost animal state, abandoning its erect stance, and being dramatically upturned. We see the naked body of the artist, submitting to an extreme physical effort, hung head-down within her studio, with the floor entirely covered in corn. That the body wears a sorghum head-covering, an archaic and totemic object-sculpture, only intensifies the power of the nude, all the stranger for its incompleteness. This accessory conceived to cover the head, that is, the most noble part of the body, often represented in diverse religious cultures as having a direct relationship with the divine, is here turned 180° and desacralized, directing the gaze to a metamorphosis that is earthly, physical and primordial. Metacorpo also reflects on fear, as a visceral emotion common to both humans and animals in moments of danger, provoking instinctual gestures and behaviors. Zoè Gruni draws on the myths and legends of her birthplace to activate a collective memory to exorcise the sentiment of fear, like the peasant tradition of gathering during a wake within the Metato, a small stone building constructed to dry chestnuts in the Pistoia Apennines, and theatre of popular history and stories.
Zoè Gruni (Pistoia, IT, 1982; lives and works in Rio de Janeiro, BR) studied painting at the Florence Accademia di Belle Arti. Always interested in exploring the local myths and traditions that belong to the history of man, she constructs a poetic mythology through the language of sculpture, installations, photographs, video and performance, in parallel with the constant practice of design. In 2010 she moved to California where she won a residency with the Raid Project in Los Angeles, and two years later she moved to Brazil, where in 2013 she was the artist in residence at FAAP in San Paolo. Among the numerous exhibitions in Italy and abroad that she has been part of, are: Percorsi Migranti, Fabbrica del Vapore, Milan, IT, 2016; Follow me, IIC, San Francisco, US, 2015; OVNi Objectif Vidéo Nice, FR, 2015; Premio Fondazione VAF - Posizioni attuali dell’arte italiana, Palazzo della Penna, Perugia, IT, 2014; Boitatà, personal exhibition at the Kunsthalle São Paulo and Galleria Progetti Rio de Janeiro, BR, 2013; MexiCali Biennal, Los Angeles, US, 2013; 54° Esposizione d'Arte Internazionale La Biennale di Venezia, Venice, IT, 2011.