The exhibition Le camere oscure' or 'Dark Rooms' is bizarre, lurid and unflinchingly morbid, as befits the gothic tradition. Subtitled, 'photographs, figures and the ambiance of the neo-gothic imagination, it exploits a long tradition of gothic art and literature using contemporary technology and appealing to modern sensibilities.
The neo-gothic artists explore religious subversion, lurid sexuality, the horror of nightmares, the grave, revenants and just about every dark place you'd be loath to imagine. Crazy Coffins were approached by the curators to provide two of our brighter and least macabre coffins, the pink satin ballet shoe and the blue fabric sports bag. It seemed an odd choice to us, but context is all!
On entering the exhibition, one's eye is drawn at once to the side chapel were they are exhibited beneath two gothic windows. But they are upstaged cleverly by a weird fore-shortened figure slumped seated against the wall. It is a ghastly doll, black ballet-skirted, legs akimbo, heavily mascarra-ed adult face, and worst of all, the word 'Help' embossed on her belted waist.
Our innocent coffins now look like the death of childhood for an abuse victim and take on the resonance of sinister toys. A further nasty surprise is in store should you peep into the unzipped bag. A smiling doll's head gazes up at you.
The entire exhibition is slick, stylish, thought-provoking and disturbing.
Our thanks go to the Curator Enzo Biffi Gentili and Assistant Curator Lorenza Bessone.