francesco ruspoli

My art explores the dynamic frontier between abstraction and figuration. This fertile area keeps alive the infinite possibilities of being human in an age intent upon closing them down. Using a strikingly vibrant palette, each painting composes a symphony of colours where subtle gradation and dramatic contrast express nuance of emotion and sensuous physicality. The work also expresses the direct sensation of lived experience through organic shapes and forms woven from flowing lines and the gaze of the viewer. You are invited to participate in a creative encounter with these elements, constructing your own visual languages and meanings. From this, questions arise about the interactions between humans and their many environments. It is hoped there also follows an increased sense of wonder at your own capacity for re-interpretation and invention which will bring an uplifting feeling to you and the world in which you are living.

Creativity for Ruspoli is a special form of discovery. He starts as an archaeologist of his own imagination, peeling back layers to find the essence of the image which may origin in ancient or classical art, dance or theatre. This process involves lengthy development of ideas worked through on canvas, much like Beethoven’s constant working out and refinement of his musical themes in sketches. This sometimes requires an austere Zen-like mental discipline, where he can get himself out of the way so his art can create itself. This is laborious, but is the only way he has found so far to achieve authenticity in his work.

The images must speak for themselves, directly to the viewer, or what is the point?

His work is an exploration of relational space and its possibilities in contemporary society. Art expresses a fundamental part of what it means to be human. It is through art that the conflicts of life can be explored, better understood, brought to the surface and put into new relationships with each other. He believes we are living in an unprecedented time of the breakdown in human relationships and interactions. This is happening from the individual and personal level to the opposite geopolitical end of the spectrum. We tend to think of interactivity in terms of technology these days rather than human feeling and connection.

His art is meant to directly challenge this state of affairs and re-invigorate and re-inspire the emotional and spiritual dimensions of human life, which is inevitably in direct conflict with much of what we see around us in our world now. These are central question not just of what art is, but of what art does, and can or even should do. The biggest frustration has been struggling against a system that attempts to codify what sells, thereby killing creativity and individual expression. It has taken him many years to find his creative voice, and a large part of this has been a struggle against such commercial forces. They are very powerful and insidious, and institutionally dismiss or ignore what they cannot appreciate.

The relational concern of his work is intended to embrace all viewers, so their interpretations are equally valid as his. The act of viewing is to enter a relationship, a mutual encounter of the painting and the viewer. This is why the figures in his work are placed so viscerally in relation to each other, and why this stimulates a reflection on relatedness which encompasses the viewer.

A vital part of interpretation is our emotional response, which incidentally is not solely the preserve of a ‘refined’ academic elite. The experience of viewing/ relating is the essence of his work so he hopes his work is able to offer that precise experience to the viewer. You could say his message, theme and vision is to co-create an experience of emotional connection – whatever it might be – on that precise moment of that particular day, with this individual person in this specific space.