Roberto Pagliarulo - Classical allusion and colour
Roberto Pagliarulo’s paintings balance allusion to ancient Italy with a pure celebration of form, beauty and colour. There is a real confidence to his solid blocks of flat, complementary colours; Tyrian purple is juxtaposed with burnt orange, Persian blue with marigold yellow, and each image is infused with a Mediterranean light. He accentuates the elegance of everyday objects, such as a basket of apples, with his calligraphic style and rhythmic outlines.
At the same time, there is a sense that every object has been included for its symbolic evocation of Rome’s rich history. Born to an Italian father, Pagliarulo’s inclusion of classical busts, sculptures and mythologised figures, all playfully posed, point towards antiquity. Yet, these paintings escape self-consciousness, which pervades much contemporary art. Neither are these nostalgic images; instead Pagliarulo renews the tradition of classical landscape and still life painting with vitality and charm.