Michael Coppelov, “Parole in Libertà”

“Parole in Libertà”, painting, 2020.
Detail of “Parole in Libertà”, painting, 2020.
Detail of “Parole in Libertà”, painting, 2020.

Materials: oil on canvas.

Dimensions: 200cm x 160cm x 8cm

Learn more about Michael Coppelov at https://michaelcoppelov.hotglue.me/

Artist’s comment: My recent paintings, including ‘Parole in Libertà’, have presented the viewer with a God’s eye view of a geometric landscape, overlaid by a physical, painterly language of unknown origin. The creation of these overwhelming and ambiguous images is heavily influenced by two key Argentinians: Jorge Luis Borges and Xul Solar. ‘Parole in Libertà’ comes within a series of work that took, as its starting point, the safety information sheet found within a Kinder Egg, and the interaction of languages within it. The work then quickly evolved to the creation of totally new languages – and characters – as a way of exploring my highly idiosyncratic fascinations and my relationship with them. As language – and all that it symbolises – has become increasingly important in my paintings, I have become more and more intrigued by Solar’s invented new universal languages: ‘Neo Creole’ and ‘Pan Lengua’. Moreover, I am fascinated by his incorporation of the symbols associated with these alongside geometric imagery and visual elements from diverse cultures within his board games. Like my paintings, these ‘Panajedrez’, ‘Panjuego’ and ‘Ajedrez Criollo’ games operate like closed systems or Borgesian worlds. Borges was, famously, a master of compression and able to create whole worlds and infinite spaces within the pages of his short stories. As mentioned, ‘Parole in Libertà’ uses the isometric grid as a background in order to explore the Borgesian idea of the infinite. This geometry, free from the usual pictorial constraints of horizons or perspectives, can be potentially extended into infinity in any direction beyond the edge of the canvas. When looking, one becomes aware that only a small section of a much larger whole is being viewed at any one time. Borges regarded Solar not only as a collaborator and interlocutor but also as a source of inspiration. As I attempt to construct my own coherent universes within each of my paintings, I ceaselessly look to these two creatives.