As collectors and art enthusiasts, nothing beats finding new talent. It’s no easy task, however. The good ones are few and far between, and rightly so. Often, it takes the help of others to nudge you in the right direction. In the case of Francesco Igory Deiana, we have Steve Powers – as well as Barry McGee – to thank for opening our eyes to the San Francisco-based artist. Currently exhibiting as one of the lesser known, hand selected artists by Powers for the Contemporaries show he curated in Milan, Francesco’s meticulously crafted ballpoint pen drawings were easily the standout of the group. McGee also affirmed his belief in the Milan-born artist by selecting him for another group show, Let’s Go Bombing, he curated in Denmark over the summer. Despite the big name support, as well as him being McGee’s assistant, its Francesco’s striking work that does all the talking.
Adept in a variety of mediums, including being an accomplished photographer, Francesco is primarily known for his probing, large-scale ballpoint pen drawings, which typically take well over a month for a single work. Often using the mask as a symbolic vehicle for expression, his pursuit bounds together the connections between man, nature and society. Through the juxtaposition of tight geometric forms within more organic arrangements, Francesco emphasizes the duality inherent to his stark monochromatic compositions. The level of detail and subtle nuance is truly a sight to behold, often blurring dimensionality with their dynamic optic qualities.
More recently, Francesco has begun to experiment with new techniques, each generating work much more abstract and loose compared to his highly refined drawings. One sees him render cloudscapes – again with nothing but a ballpoint pen – upon fluorescent colored paper, the end result resembling that of a sunset on those days when the particulate matter and hazardous exhaust from the local power plant produce colors not produced in nature. In an even more unique process, bleach is painted onto photographic paper, the resulting chemical reaction producing a weathered, rust-like effect to the imagery. Taken as a whole, the fledgling artist has proven unique in concept, proficient in execution, and dexterous in methodology, all the makings for someone who deserves more attention. Clearly, his peers have taken notice. It’s only a matter of time before more people realize his potential.
Check out an extensive survey of his work after the jump.