Giuseppe Penone

Garessio Italy 1947, lives and works in Turin

charcoal on felt, plaster
19 parts, total c. 350 x 1500 cm

The work of Giuseppe Penone deals with the desire for a union of man and nature, two entities that have become very remote from each other in western society. He continually endeavors to bring about physical, sensual and poetic contact between the two. Penone’s references to nature are nearly always accompanied by gestures reminiscent of his own body. The large installation Palpebre (Eyelids) is made up of several large drawings, each of which is an ‘eyelid’. With charcoal on felt, the artist has rendered the fine pattern of veins in this protector of the eye. The closed forms of the elements merge with the monumental landscape of the large installation and are linked by small white ‘anchors’: plaster casts of segments of Penone’s face, on which he has placed an imprint of his finger, as though the succession of elements is based upon a particular mode of growth. In his writings Penone moreover makes a connection between the shape of the eyelid and a natural landscape, in which the hills form ‘an infinite series of eyes directed at space’.