Diego Marcon “La miserabile” at La Triennale di Milano, Milan
What I find pathetic is the human condition and the way it constantly drags itself along as its own burden. That’s why my characters are so exhausted. (Diego Marcon)
There is something profoundly distressing, but at the same time also comical, in the work of Diego Marcon (b. 1985, Busto Arsizio). Living is wretched and spares no one. This may be why, for his first solo exhibition in an institution, the artist has decided to turn the space of the Impluvium at La Triennale di Milano into a silent, disconcerting room.
La Miserabile is an existential condition, a state of mind, and a scene that takes shape from a central figurative group: a bedstead on which a sick female figure is resting. All around, a number of people watch over her body, busily performing enigmatic little tasks. The image of the dying girl, which is a recurrent theme in sentimentalist art, is conveyed in the style of children’s illustrations and cartoons, in an atmosphere of numb torpor.
The setting is unadorned, accentuating the emotional power of the work and carving out a space of neuroses and frenzied closure to the outside world, in which those who inhabit Marcon’s world – the wretched, or the miserabili – are indefinitely and inescapably trapped. Isolated in the half light, as though he wished to protect them from prying eyes, these figures appear to the viewer in a place of contemplation, inviting us to dwell on the actions frozen in place. On this occasion, the artist goes beyond the formats of moving images that he used in his most recent projects, and experiments with the evocative power of what is not immediately visible, of what appears to be ambivalent, and probably pathetic, at the fringes of both image and existence. (Edoardo Bonaspetti)
at La Triennale di Milano, Milan
until 26 August 2018