Foresta Rossa – Velasco Vitali
23rd MARCH / 20th OCTOBER 2013
ISOLA MADRE, STRESA
GRAND HOTEL MAJESTIC GARDENS, VERBANIA
From its very beginnings Velasco Vitali’s artistic progress has embodied a style of painting inspired
by a crude, sharply-defined yet visionary and dreamlike representation of natural and urban
landscapes. These works have led him to be recognised as one of Italy’s major contemporary artists.
Paesaggio Cancellato 1987-1992 (an examination of the destruction and reconstruction of the fabric
of the landscape in the Valtellina region after the terrible floods of 1987), and the landscapes/visions
of Mediterranean ports were followed by the more analytical works depicting western cities. With
Foresta Rossa Velasco Vitali adopts an “urban”, contemporary approach, creating what a material
yet visionary sculpture in a contradictory scenario of representations composed of modern ruins at
the edge of time.
After hosting the Foresta Rossa creative project in its historic spaces (19 February-16 April 2013),
the Fondazione Corrente has offered to sponsor the exhibition at the Triennale di Milano, where a
display of large canvases and drawings on paper of various sizes form a reflection on urban places,
contemporary locations bereft of destiny, lost in an atmosphere of directionless modernity.
Velasco Vitali’s artistic project will be extended for another season on the Isola Madre (Stresa) and in
Verbania in response to the acclaim and success it met with in 2012. This prolongation also reflects
the express desire of the purchaser, who saw it as only natural that the site specific sculpture should
remain amid the spaces of the Isola Madre, renewing its spaces and striking up a dialogue with
23rd MARCH / 20th OCTOBER 2013
“TUTTA LA CITTA’ E’ UN’ISOLA E TUTTA L’ISOLA E’ UNA CITTÀ’” (Lt. “All the city is an island and
all the island is a city”). ISOLA MADRE, STRESA
by Luca Molinari
Foresta Rossa is the title of an artistic initiative by Velasco Vitali at the Isola Madre on Lake Maggiore
and in the gardens of Verbania’s Grand Hotel Majestic. It is the concluding part of a journey that
began with Sbarco a Pietrasanta and Sbarco a Milano (2010). Foresta Rossa is the ideal – and
therefore impossible – starting point for the theme of secrecy and instability addresses in previous
projects. The botanical gardens of Isola Madre are transformed into a landscape suspended in time
– the flying carousel constructed around the huge Cashmere cypress, for example, is the heart of the
installation and the focal point of the visit. Every work in the Isola Madre artistic project is a narrative
chapter where the surreal inventions of the dreaming process identify themselves with the intensely
real vision emphasised by the relationship between the works, sited in the garden in close
relationship with nature.
The naturalistic beauty, botanical perfection and almost geometric layout of the setting establishes a close relationship of meaning with the works, almost as if the gardens had
been deliberately created to frame the installations.