Carla Bedini’s intertwined threads

Carla Bedini’s intertwined threads

Macchie, 110×95 cm, 2016

by Laura Luppi

Arachne wins the weaving contest between her and Athena, who becomes even more furious and hits Arachne with her shuttle causing her to bleed. Arachne runs away and eventually tries to hang herself from a tree, but the powerful Goddess turns Arachne into a spider, proclaiming that she and all her descendants would henceforth hang forever from threads and be skilful weavers. In Carla Bedini’s works this thread, which weaves connections between people, which is a symbol of life and knowledge, of memory and mystery, seems to want to talk to us informing us that the solution of the riddle lies before our eyes, although it silently hides itself behind intense looks, which are so profound, immediate and disarming that leave you speechless. And if it’s true that waiving is still widely considered to be a female activity, since the artist uses mixed media art techniques incorporating gauze and bandages, it seems a natural consequence that she portrays female characters only. Once more their weaves seem to refer to other threads, keepers of an alchemic secret: the transformation of the human being from conception to birth, during the stages of growth and even beyond death. And so we can see some young girls, like silkworms, wearing wraparound robes on which butterflies of many different kinds are resting, ready to dissolve or to take wing following the metaphor par excellence of the soul released from the body. But, should a feeling of unease suddenly loom over us, we must not allow ourselves to be deceived: “What the caterpillar calls the end of the world the master calls a butterfly” (Lao Tze). Everything can therefore acquire a positive or negative meaning, it’s an ambiguity that finds its most intimate fusion in the visual contrast between black and white. The High Priestess on the tarot card holds a book in her hands, on whose cover there is the symbol of Taijitu (a graphical representation of the Taoist concept of Yin-Yang), her feet resting on a mosaic floor similar to that of some esoteric settings in Bedini’s works. Emblem of the material world, it is considered to be a place of initiation, by walking on it we can transcend the everlasting dilemma between right or wrong, with which the earthly dimension is impregnated. After all, Shakespeare wrote that “Good and evil are woven into the fabric of our existence”, and the female characters of Carla Bedini’s works would like to whisper it to us at times. The medium they come from is similar to that of the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm, except that Bedini’s characters are surrounded by symbols: symbols of fertility, such as the fishes and the abundance of eggs they lay (cosmic egg); symbols of motherhood and creation, such as the tree and its relation with the woman (woman-tree); symbols of fecundity and strength, such as the fawn (young baby deer which the mythology associates to Artemis, the virgin goddess of the hunt); symbols of protection and safety provided by the presence of the wolf as a faithful companion. And yet the dialectic between creation and destruction, between the life drive and the death drive, seems to be about to take possession of the faces of the young priestesses, of their eyes, of their hands. And finally, some flying houses, uprooted from the ground maybe due to a sudden tornado, remind us of another mysterious world, the world of Oz, in which the main character Dorothy, dressed in checkered clothing, sang about “bluebirds” and dreams that can magically come true.

Carla Bedini

Wind, 170×120 cm, 2013

Carla Bedini

The something rain, 95×110 cm, 2013

Carla Bedini

The scarf, la sciarpa, 95×110 cm, 2016

Carla Bedini

Pois, 170×120 cm, 2015

  Carla Bedini

One 2, 180×80 cm, 2016

  Carla Bedini

Myrsky, 95×100 cm, 2015

Carla Bedini

Emma, 90×80 cm, 2014

Carla Bedini

Drops, 95×110 cm, 2012

Carla Bedini

Caterina, 90×80 cm, 2014

Carla Bedini

Blue birds, 95x 110 cm, 2015

 

Photo credits:
Courtesy:
galleria Ca’ di Fra’

www.carlabedini.it
www.facebook.com/BediniCarla

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