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Indepth Arts News:

"GOLD: Paintings by Michelangelo Russo"
2000-05-24 until 2000-06-10
Goya Galleries
Melbourne, , AU Australia

The large works are a rich impasto of oil paint and Dutch gold leaf reminiscent of the lustre inherent in Byzantine art. The works trigger a visual experience not of this world, a play on density and translucence evoking religious feelings of deep contemplation and former opulence. The golden luminescence of Michelangelos work seems a metaphor for entropy and/or a sense of history, filtering through the restrictions of time and space to morph into these modern works.

Michelangelo Russo was born in 1962 in rural Campobasso, Southern Italy. His traditional rural Italian heritage is a key to his art.   Michelangelo absorbed painting techniques during his apprenticeship to a local well known artist, Franco Iannelli.  He also studied architecture and graphic design in Rome. This rich and diverse range of influences is apparent in all his work.

Michelangelo held his first solo exhibition in 1988.  In 1990 after several shows in Italy, he visited Berlin, where he soon felt a strong affinity with the citys artistic energy.  He became absorbed by this powerful artistic and cultural mecca.  Michelangelo established a studio in the heart of East Berlin, which at this time, shortly after the collapse of the Berlin Wall, was fertile artistic ground for young pioneering artists.  He staged two critically acclaimed solo shows in Berlin based upon his output from this highly creative Berlin period.

Michelangelo has had a lifelong interest not only in painting but also music.  He has toured Europe as a musician playing concerts and experimental music festivals, and has appeared on several seminal recordings. In 1993 he took up residence in Australia.  Michelangelo was drawn to Australia and its unique characteristics of light and space as a cultural contrast to the highly urbanised Berlin.   He has exhibited in Sydney where he is represented by the Art House Gallery.   In Melbourne, where hecurrently resides and is represented by Goya Galleries, he has had several exhibitions consisting of both solo and group shows.

Michelangelos work features in private collections spanning the world: Australia, Cuba,  Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, and United Kingdom.  His work features prominently in the January 2000 edition of Belle Australia.

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