Giulio Paolini’s “Sale d’attesa” works at Repetto Gallery, London

Giulio Paolini’s “Sale d’attesa” works at Repetto Gallery, London

Repetto Gallery, London, is exhibiting Giulio Paolini’s “Works on paper from ‘Sale d’attesa’ series.” The exhibition is on view through September 20. Most of this oeuvre is inspired by this quote by Jorge Louis Borges, which Paolini loves: “How do I compose a poem? I put myself in a passive situation, and I wait. I wait, and my only concern is that it all ends in beauty. I feel like I am receiving a gift, and I don’t even know if it comes from my own memory or something else. And I try not to intervene too much.” 

The exhibition showcases 25 unique pieces of works on from the series. Their common denominator is a detail of his studio in Po road, Turin: the sitting room, consisting in a sofa and two armchairs, becomes a place where inspiration and memory enter into a dialogue with the forces of creation. In “L’Aleph” the image of Borges appears — elegant, ironical, and austere — with his stick: the new Homer of the 20th century. 

The gallery writes, “Art as waiting. Inspiration as gift. The enthusiasm of creation: in Greek, ‘Enthousiasmos, Enthous, En-theos, in God,’ to be full of a God, to be possessed by a God, the Socratic demon. As his beloved Borges, Paolini likes to think about the gesture of waiting — a space, or a place that listen — like an antenna or a metaphysical receiver. Listening to a voice that may arrive, that will soon surround us: a far, mysterious, different strength but a voice, a presence that wants to talk through us.”

“Ermite a Paris” features Paolini’s friend Calvino, who passed away many years ago, with a smile over a subtle and troubled mask, a geometric bust that leans on two plexiglass cases. Melotti, who stands waving his hat, while four spheres, maybe symbols of transparence, float in the air. In addition other images, other shapes, other icons: two more plexiglass cubes, overlapping where are teeming new and ancient projects; music stands for celestial and silent notes; easels that present new icons and images, sometimes cruel modernity: an immigrant, an armed soldier, some corazzieri forming baroque visions.   

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