If it is one thing that Willy Verginer knows, it is how to breathe life into the sculptures he crafts. Holding very little semblance to the basic material they are created from, his works have a special quality about them – they seem to speak just as living beings do.
Willy Verginer’s works lie somewhere on the cusp of true-to-life and whimsy. His sculptures most of them life sized, are based on people interacting with flowers or animals.
His works are prepared using unique and interesting poses and are often embellished with floral elements; these then go on to get dipped in colour or gold paint in such a way so as to form banded segments on them. The pieces tell their own stories but it is up to the individual to figure them out and it is not surprising that there is many a diverse version.
Titling his works with a fresh name every time, Willy creates his durable sculptural processes in series depending on the inspiration of the moment. Bound by a common theme the different pieces of the sequence are an expression of the artisan’s thoughts and moments of silence at the time, and a result of an artistic play with the elements of colour and compositions in wood.
In the series ‘Cecità Voluta’ characters sprawl on a dock, their legs seemingly disappearing into the ground, as bright orange paint tricks the eye into seeing varying levels of immersion in the “water.” While in ‘Fior Di Pelle’ (which roughly translates as ‘On Edge’) he applies his skills to create collaborative and interactive wooden life-sized and life-like sculptures that float eerily between skilled art and eccentricity.
Playing with the elements of composition and colour, Verginer arranges his immersive characters in the most interesting of situations. Each is broken down into very clear sections of monotone colour, with such texture that only increases in depth the closer it is.
Why are some statues balanced on their heads? Why are some sinking into ‘water’? Why are flowers growing out of the hands of a character? Why are the pieces created in differently coloured segments? What is Willy alluding? I believe the artist just wants the observer to ‘think’ and come to his own conclusion, and in this way enter an introspective phase and enjoy the utopian moment that is sure to slowly seep in.
Verginer’s works have been exhibited at the Biennale Italy – China, at Scope Miami 2012 and Pan Amsterdam 2012. Apart from that he has had shows at the Royal Palace Monza Milan, at Marcorossi Contemporaryart Emanuele and at the Gallery Majke Husstege.
His oeuvre first attracts, then confounds and then slowly becomes a long lasting cultural memory to interpret and then to re-interpret.
Text By Mala Bajaj
Photographs Courtesy The Artist