Melissa Bugarella

23.02.12 – 23.03.12

La Scatola Gallery is proud to present Notturno, the first solo exhibition by London-based artist and musician Melissa Bugarella.

The work presented in Notturno, from sculptural to audio-visual, explores the recurring themes in Bugarella’s practice: memory and its time-transfiguration into fantasy and desire in relation to technological and personal images.

Fantasy quickly merges with the notion of melancholia and the desire for something unknown becomes present in the stillness of all the works in Notturno, be they sculptural, visual or sound-based. In the video Composition for Lady in Red, the artist re-edited and manipulated footage from an old VHS tape, recorded in the early 90’s during her adolescence, containing images from an Italian variety televisions show; the movements of one of the show-girls are reconstructed into a new choreography – the body of the girl appearing in the artist’s video as if moving to the rhythm of a new score, composed and performed uniquely to the girl’s image. The result is a figure transposed in time, her movements slow, her body ghostly, her presence between spectral and monumental, her figure caught in potential, isolated among the others as if caught in a lover’s gaze, yet anonymous among the vast multitude of television- generated images.

The sculpture Last Kiss is homage to 19th century sculptor Medardo Rosso. The original sculpture by Rosso’s portrayed a girl, bare foot laying in mourning at the opening of a tomb. Now only a single image exists of this work, and numerous are the speculations on the material it was made of, and the date of it’s disappearance. Bugarella’s Last Kiss, explores not only the physicality of the sculptural material as gesture, and the notion of homage, but also refers to the destruction of the original work, now untraceable in time, which exists in the form of a unique photographic image. Again the allegory of the image versus an obtained and real physicality presents itself at the centre of the artist’s interest.

Melissa Bugarella’s exhibition Notturno displays works that come from interior yet critical reflection on the natural and the still, on the body and the Image, on the technological, the visual and the physical and on the metaphor of the image as ghost.

Melissa Bugarella is an artist and composer based in London. She was born in Padova, Italy 1981. She obtained an MFA in Fine Art at Goldsmiths, London in 2009 and previously a BA in Fine Art from the London Metropolitan University, in 2006. She has exhibited in the UK and Internationally. Exhibitions and screenings include: The Lewton Bus: “Coming Soon” and “Conditions”, two- part exhibition curated by Tom Trevatt, Vitrine Gallery, London; Mapping the studio, MoinsUn Gallery, curated by KMG collective, Paris; Cross Currents, in collaboration with Mary Cork, Barbican Art Gallery, London; I see myself there where I am not, Formans Gallery, London; Hack Gold, Space Project, London; Waiting for Suicidal Hares, 501 Artspace, Chongqing, China; New British Video, screening, Camden Art Centre, London; I know a friend, Het Poortgebouw, Rotterdam.

Thursday 23.02.12
6PM – 8.30PM

An exhibition curated by Valentina Fois.

Images courtesy of the artist and La Scatola Gallery


Notturno, reviews

A Curator’s View: Bugarella, a new queen of the dark, by Valentina Fois