But she does not adorn herself with current buzzwords like recycling or circular economy
Initially, we recoiled when we got Emanuela Camacci’s mail with the invitation to report about her art. After all, some of her works are made with leftover pieces of stone, and we were afraid that someone was trying to do their own self-marketing with buzzwords like resource conservation and carbon footprint.
Upon closer inspection, however, we found that the word recycling does not appear anywhere in her work.
It is undoubtedly a great idea to also make something out of the waste produced in traditional sculpture, figuratively speaking: to create a kind of ambient noise out of stone chips that shows the artist from a completely different side.
Just imagine if Michelangelo had made something out of the marble negative around his David that had been cut up into chips, not on behalf of a rich financier, but solely according to his gusto.
Emanuela Camacci unmistakably goes her own way – that’s what we wanted to express with this introduction.
This probably has to be said to an artist who grew up in Rome amid the sculpture art of many centuries. She describes her situation there positively: “The antiquity of Rome has fascinated and enveloped me since early childhood, I grew up in beauty.“
Even as a child, she enthusiastically painted and sculpted in clay, inspired by nature and the urban landscape, as well as emotions and experiences, are often read about her. She graduated from an art school, and then studied sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome.
After graduation, she attended the mosaic studio of Costantino Buccolieri, which influenced her greatly. She describes the result of this continuing education as follows: “I now have an eye trained on fragments.“
Her career as an artist, however, got its definitive turn when she participated in the Global Nomadic Art Project 2017 in Turkey: there, the participants were to work solely with those materials they found on the spot. The task was: to create works in the natural environment only for a certain time.
“This opportunity allowed me to look beyond a traditional vision of sculpture, and to express myself artistically,“ she writes.
She finally came to using stone chips in the wake of the Covid pandemic, when she could only work in the studio.
Meanwhile, she continues to create large sculptures from solid rough pieces. They’re made for public places, for example, where they’re meant to dialogue with their surroundings and passersby.
That is one level of her art, characterized by physical work, she writes.
Then there is the more meditative level: for this, she collects the chips, sorts them into boxes according to size, shape, and color, and makes something out of them. She is particularly interested in the traces left by the tools: “These flakes have their own history, so I use them as they are.“
As a matter of principle, she does not dye the chips, even though some works look like she does. If necessary, she adds shards of colored glass or glass paste as a supplement.
At the latest on this 2nd level, a special trait of hers comes to the fore, namely the humor and the fun of giving the viewer a good time with her works. “I am quite positive and I think my way of being, my poetics are transmitted in my works,“ she writes.
“At least I hope so!“ she adds as if she had already made too much fuss about herself before.
Photos: Emanuela Camacci
(27.10.2023, USA: 10.27.2023)