The journey, the wise, the woman, the totem, the four elements and more, are in themselves evocative and intriguing terms because they lead us into “time not time”, as the art critic Lodovico Gierut defines our primordial, at dawn of human civilization, or in those times defined “golden age” by philosophy and literature, alluding to primitive innocence, in which the link with nature was intimate and close. The traveler, not the tourist, is a soul pilgrim, in search of something immaterial, of an inner communication that cannot be fixed by photograph and which is expressed only (and not always) in writing or art. It can be an encounter like in Giuseppe Maiorana, a feeling, an emotion, it is however something that remains engraved in our mind with an unprecedented and consolatory force, even if we can grasp its meaning afterwards. In the case of Maiorana the power of an encounter, matured over time, has even given a turning point in life and insight into the revolutionary unconscious. The choice of art form through which we can express ourselves is the expression of our inner self rather than adherence to a particular current of thought: sometimes they coincide temporally and can be influenced by the outside, but in real artist emerge solid and free. I think of a Sistine whose figures are the expression of Michelangelo’s artistic will, new and provocative with respect to the surrounding art, to Picasso’s “Demoiselles d’Avignon”, Mirò, Kandinsky, and many other where the urgency of expression went against defined styles.
When I found myself in front of Maiorana’s works I immediately thought they were “sculptures of silence”, in which the conversation between the observer and the artistic creation can only take place if we grasp its ancient and archetypal message, in which silence is the privileged means of communication. It was therefore inevitable the reference to Jungian psychology, to the collective unconscious, to that whole world of natural ingenuousness and spontaneity linked to the forces of nature, against which our age is marching, with its induced needs and the noise of too many words. The reference to myth further reinforces the theme of a common heritage that, consciously or unconsciously, emerges from the depths of our mind; and here are the symbolic sculptures of Maiorana, the faces that the flow of generations has smoothed, the bodies defined in their essential that however retain an eternal message.
A significant gift that the artist has received, expressed, with infinite variations, in the face welcomed by his hands and repeated unchanging in other sculptures, of which body reveals nature; male or female, emerging from myth or archetypes. In the “Journey” the yin and yang of Eastern philosophy are together as an essential basis for a journey that will unfold taking different forms depending on what will be required from the moment. The eternal roots of all things, the four elements from which life was born. Fire, earth, water, air, originated from the primordial chaos, are the basis of the things order, where each element cannot exist without the other , having the ability to mutate into one another. The artist contrasts the fixity of the faces with the movement of the bodies, representing the “Earth” as a mythical centaur, gallantly ready to gallop, the “Water” as a plastic female figure, perhaps a mermaid, emerging from the mist of myth. And again “Air”, another male figure whose wings characterize a body that seems however firmly anchored to earth, as part of a whole in which every element is essential. Finally the sculpture of a dragon, “Fire”, with characteristical features, but devoid of gender peculiarities. In all Maiorana sculptures, the faces with empty eye sockets seem to fix eternity, motionless and ancient like the world, while the position of the body itself suggests personality: the “Wise” in the typical meditator attitude, the “ Warrior “ armed and powerful, the” Woman “in a gathered and elegant position, the” Mother “softly welcoming with a rounded belly. The “Poet”, the “Dance”, the “Waiting”, the “Twins”, the “Moon”, the “Totem” are the images, the concepts or the sensations, concretized in the glossy sculptures, but I believe that the the “Infinity” is the one that sums up the inner world and the artistic choices of Maiorana for its strong symbolic value. It is fascinating to see how the immutable face has acquired an expression of expectation, of astonishment, a curious and hopeful gaze beyond what can be considered either a limit or a window on the future.
Marilena Cheli Tomei
Saggista e storica