In many ways the Collezione De Iorio, like the ancient Roman god Janus, is two-faced: one face contemplates the past, the other sees the future, and the neck clings to its base.
The collection, focused on contemporary art, consists of a theme of white works almost referring to ancient Greek sculpture, and a theme in the opposite direction that is formed by the irreverent, “ugly” and apocalyptic work. The whole collection is influenced from collector Mauro De Iorio’s profession as a Medical radiologist and entrepreneur: medicine, diagnostic, investigating the inner depth and outer depths of the human body are themes often present in the art that he collects.
Walking through the entrance of the Venetian house of De Iorio you are welcome by a blinking eye from an orange monochrome by Tony Oursler; then a sculpture by Goshka Macuga, where a two-dimensional reproduction of an arm is hugging a branch; in the corridor, an orchid by Mat Collishaw reveal itself as a mass of bowels instead of a beautiful flower; in the guest room a shot by Robert Mapplethorpe where two sinuous arms stretch out to become dictatorial. Part of the collection is characterized by an aesthetic brutality that evades any sublimation, diving into the post-Internet, in the synthetic, and in the unrefined revision of even more subcultures.
The other face of the collection is quite different: white, classic, polished, sometimes archaic, golden. Among these works there is a climbing chalk by Paolo Icaro, a tribal mask by Alexandra Sukhareva, the funny and lucid marble work of Jon Rafman, and the colossal tubular structure depicting a sparrow of Petrit Halilaj. Mauro De Iorio does not have a clear idea of beauty, he has two: one is Apollonian, almost harmonic; the other is annoying and provocative. De Iorio is aware that the pleasure of the contemplation of an artwork is changeable; he knows that what looks beautiful now can be seen differently later, and so his “collectors eye” has become expert to identify the extreme elegance and the extreme brutality.
Extract from a text by Sofia Silva, appeared in the series “Critical Collecting” curated by Antonio Grulli.