saltus fidei | Leap of Faith is the title of an exhibition of new paintings by Mara De Luca. The series, titled Sipario (Italian for theatrical curtain or scrim), is a reflection on a contemporary sublime, one that is profound in its absolute superficiality and theatricality while particular to mass media and visual culture. The works address the existential through a romanticized and hyper-analog translation of digital media and contemporary imaging tropes. The Sipario paintings are inspired by the aesthetic and emotional experience of daily life in Los Angeles, a city of visual contrasts and contradictions: stunning natural beauty coexisting in a cultural climate of facile content, saturated digital aesthetics, and air-brushed, synthetic effects. In these paintings constructed landscape and atmospheric imagery present a mirroring of process and content, whereby, through exaggeration, they reveal and disguise the processes by which they have been made, and a relationship between picture and craft is evident.
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