I cannot conceive of any better way of describing the substance of the discussion about Amedeo Fiorese than that of talking about magical abstract art. As a matter of fact, it is seldom that one comes across an artist these days with a comparable ability to give us the excitement of the unknowable, the taste of a whiplash presence-absence. What I want to stress here is the language he has developed so coherently over the years, delving on the one hand into the problems posed by truth and recognisability and, on the other, into those of abstraction, working from within the scope of sculpture to force its traditional terms, yet without reneging on the lesson of theory, rather tending to repair the fracture between formal and informal as a consequence of an aesthetic reappraisal that is not pretended, but profoundly meditated. His sculpture vibrates with all these reflections, with all the risks and contradictions deriving from the difficult decision to contract out of the mass and never tag along with the latest fads. But also with all the effectiveness of absolute originality. If Fiorese has a problem, in fact, it is that his sculpture is anything but generic, of approximate sentiments or vaguely allusive: what he creates are exaggerated and often disturbing forms of rawness.

Born in 1939, Amedeo Fiorese has a biography that is the tale of an early vocation followed by a career rich in acknowledgements. He was only 17 when he won the Triveneto Vase Competition and was immediately contacted by the Committee Director, Giorgio Wenter Marini, who wanted to sound out his potential. Supported by a scholarship procured for him by Marini, he completed his art studies successfully at the Venice State School of Art. In 1963, after taking his Bachelor of Education in Padua, he became a secondary school art teacher. His own artistic output continued relentlessly in the meantime, culminating in his participation in the 1958, 1960 and 1962 editions of the Venice Biennale, in several personal exhibitions and in the Gold Medal won at the International Competition in Faenza in 1976, which led to his works being shown in Japan. In 1983, he retired from teaching, so as to devote himself to his sculpture full time. From that moment onwards, his professional CV has coincided with the evolutionary milestones in his creativity.

Amedeo Fiorese is a member of that rather rare species: that of the master craftsmen. His works are his children: when he shows them to visitors, he asks for their opinions and hopes they will be positive, but what he really seeks is a conscious understanding of the love and devotion he has put into the shapes, the lights and the colours of his works. Abstraction prevails as the principal choice in his current research, where he is an experimenter with materials: ceramic, stoneware, porcelain, bronze, gold, resins, painting and marble all dialogue with his alchemist’s soul, the inner, magical place where the elaboration of each of his sculptures first germinates, each one then progressing to express meanings related closely with its tactile and visual essence. While on the one hand this artist experiments with material, on the other he is passionate about seeking each work’s form. There are no standardised aesthetic models in his enormous informal repertoire, as he is a past master at applying an original method of composition that makes each final result expressive, inimitable and extremely tense.

Paolo Levi