The catalogue and the exhibition Un mondo astratto non basta that the ABC-Arte gallery now devotes to Giorgio Griffa form a sequel to the one-man exhibition Esonerare il mondo, curated by Ivan Quaroni and held in the same gallery in 2015, and to the group exhibition Absolute Painting. Giorgio Griffa, Tomas Rajlich, Jerry Zaniuk, curated by Flaminio Gualdoni and presented there in 2018, all under the aegis of the Genova Local Authority.
This selection of some forty works is focused on a nucleus from the 1970s in which, in alignment with Arte Povera, Griffa conducted a personal exploration that led the artist to go beyond traditional concepts of painting in identifying a new form of knowledge. ‘I do not represent anything, I paint’ was his motto in 1972. Since then, his art has refused to offer certainties; it is an ongoing questioning of painting, of its intrinsic intelligence and its redefinition.
In the works of Griffa, the balance between form, composition, space and colour runs almost opposite to the stylistic traits of Analytical Painting, with which Griffa is often compared. His painting conveys an intrinsic sense of beauty resulting from the interrelation of the elements that form the work rather than from the procedure that generates it.
There is a strong philosophico-anthropological component in Griffa’s paintings: the marks applied to the canvas represent the essence of thought and action, the product of a process of dismissal that brings in its wake a layer of possible meanings open to continuous human interpretation. The canvases are free, unconstrained by a frame, ready to seize the space. In this immediate, essential and luminous representation, Griffa traces lines that evoke the long human memory, kept alive thanks to painting, the trait d’union between present and past knowledge.
For Griffa, to paint is therefore an act that is presented as the totality on which to reflect, a means and not an end, and is related to other fields of knowledge such as philosophy, science and music.