Ludovica Gioscia: Neurotic Seduction Astral Production
21 November – 20 December 2014
Ludovica Gioscia is a self-proclaimed compulsive hoarder. She collects all manner of consumer products which are later reconstituted into sculptures, installations and two-dimensional works. Appropriating the language of consumerism, her flamboyant surfaces act as a mirror reflecting society’s compulsions and obsessions.
For her exhibition at John Jones Project Space, Ludovica Gioscia is presenting a new work from her Giant Decollage series, titled Neurotic Seduction Astral Production. These expansive wall-based works are formed through the accumulation of several layers of wallpapers which are then peeled back by the artist, ripping away the layers to reveal the strata underneath. The result is a dense patchwork of exuberant patterns, colours and motifs which are a reference to the Baroque style which originated in Gioscia's native Rome.
Gioscia has been collecting wallpaper since 2003, which she either buys readymade during her travels or on eBay; or she designs herself and screenprints by hand. The wallpaper archive – one of many archives the artist is continuously building – comprises a wide variety of decorative motifs deriving from leisure and entertainment, such as watches, stripes, maps, architectural details, icons from social media, images of currencies no longer in use, geometric shapes, shimmering swirls, palm trees, and much more. Her Giant Decollage works are always site-specific with the selection of motifs feeding into grander narratives of soft power.
Underpinning Gioscia’s oeuvre is her ongoing interest in marketing and branding strategies. Her work is both an appropriation and a critique of consumer culture, but Gioscia prefers to see herself as a retail anthropologist, studying society’s relationship with consumption and its excesses. This may, in some part, explain the artist's compulsive collecting: she collects items such as cosmetic ads, packaging, branded tissue paper, wallpapers, and an assortment of ephemera, which she meticulously orders into archives which are then systematically studied and destroyed. For example, her wallpaper archive is physically destroyed through the making of the artwork.
This cycle of accumulation and destruction is key to the understanding of Gioscia's work. By studying and mimicking society's relationship with consumption, Ludovica Gioscia attempts to demystify the strategies of branding executives and retails houses by dismantling their relentless attempts to fuse our psyche with brand affection.
Born in Rome in 1977, Ludovica Gioscia graduated with an MFA in Fine Art Media from the Slade School of Art in 2004. She has since exhibited internationally with solo shows at Galleria Mangiabarche in Calasetta (2013), Riccardo Crespi in Milan (2013), Macro in Rome (2012), The Warhol in Pittsburgh (2009), and Siobhan Davies Studios in London (2009). Gioscia has also been part of numerous group exhibitions including group shows at Edinburgh College of Art, Salon 94 in New York, Analix Forever in Geneva, The Miro Foundation in Barcelona, The Warhol in Pittsburgh, The Flag Art Foundation in New York, Jerwood Space and South London Gallery in London, MNAC in Bucharest and Comfort Moderne in Poitiers. Her work is currently part of Edra at The American Academy in Rome and Material girls and their muses at Marcelle Joseph’s project space in London. She lives and works in London.
Read Ludovica Gioscia's interview with Art Vehicle here.
Image credit: Ludovica Gioscia, Neurotic Seduction Astral Production, 2014, Installation view at John Jones Project Space, London © Michele Panzeri