Elisa Bertaglia_Singing over the Bones #22, 2019. Oil, charcoal and graphite on canvas. 129×104 cm


Elisa Bertaglia lives and works in Rovigo, Italy. She completed her studies at the Venice Academy of Fine Arts under Carlo Di Raco’s supervision and got a First Level Academic Degree in Painting in 2006, and a Second Level Academic Degree with honours in Painting in 2009. In April 2011 she was selected to exhibit Populus III, a series of drawings and paintings on paper, at the Academy Pavilion during the 54° Venice Biennial.

From 2009 onwards her artworks have been selected and mentioned for various awards, and several articles have been written about her work. Bertaglia participates in solo and group exhibitions in Italy and abroad. Since completing her studies at the Academy, nature has been at the centre of Bertaglia’s work.

Through the study of classical texts and memories of Polesine, it offers a dreamlike and visionary approach. Small and large compositions are built from a personal repertoire, consolidated over time. Her work, in fact, is full of human figures, animals and fragments of landscape, all linked to a strong symbolic value. She depicts children with concealed faces as a hint to universality. Wolves, herons and snakes as a metaphor for protection, instinct and compulsion. Rocks and leaves are the last footholds of a fluid universe in which there is no above and below, in which everything can have its double. The loss of the horizon line often falls over.

If in the past the artist worked only on paper, focusing more on the mark rather than on the colour and creating works of small format included in wall compositions, in the new artworks you can notice some interesting changes. On one hand she adopts the pictorial solution for water landscapes and stars, using blue and green shades, on the other hand she pays attention to the mise-en-scène, regarding the figure’s positioning on the sheet and technical innovations of the recent experiments on canvas too. Proportions change as well as materials and colour balances, what does not change is the same plot of rare poetry that has always distinguished Bertaglia’s work, echoes of a fantasy world, a magical-religious dimension twisted with archetypes, myths and legends.

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