"I felt that the time had come when two of the wonders of the earth, a snowy
volcano and the curiosity of a woman, put themselves to the test, against each other."
Palazzo Previtera and SARP Gallery are pleased to present Ragnhild Nes: When words attack the visible, they are erased, exhibition curated by Truls Blaasmo. Sicily, an island of ancestral myths and cults, but above all the island of the dazzling light, the black lava and the sublime landscape has immersed the artist in the inner spirit of Sicily, a land of emotions. Following the footsteps of Emily Lowe, an English traveller who in 1857 visited Sicily
and exalted the beauty of the landscape, Nes inquired its landscape and light. The
peak of her emotions has reached the maximum synesthetic level with the excursion
to the Etna volcano. Poetry, from the Greek word poiesis, is creation, which in a
synesthetic relationship mixes various sensory and visual perceptions.
Nes’s painting is a process of fixating living things in time and space. Similarly,
to words, her painting practice involves superimposed images that float on each other
without convergence. Inspired by the poems of Emily Dickinson, Nes identifies the
Etna volcano with life itself, energy, and pain, where the red of lava and black
contrasts are juxtaposed with the blinding light of the sun. Her works are born from a
poetic creativity, which comes from the use of words, from her inner language.
Writing and the associated creative moment of writing represent the moment where
an emotion, a reflection, a dream, a pulse and capturing glimpse of her time are con-
textualized in her paintings. Her poems are her breath, and the emotional colours of
her paintings are her words with which Nes paints the plot of her narratives.
They are fragments of the world, in which things are no longer things. They
have been deprived of essence and objects have disappeared, but they turn into
streaks, illuminated surfaces, stylized landscapes, in which colour acquires a greater
expressive and chromatic force. The present moment - which is the only moment we
live- is filled with colours, impressions. The blue of the sky becomes visible without
the word "sky" as well as the creative and destructive forces of ETNA manifest
themselves through the red colours of her paintings. When words attack the visible,
they are erased. This is the true essence of Nes’ paintings.
Ragnhild Nes (b. 1993) is a visual artist from Oslo, Norway, working primarily with the medium
of painting. At the core of her practice is the study of light and how light changes according to the
seasons, months, and days. The usage of colour in relation to form and shape, creates her own universe
with abstract motives. She studied painting in Copenhagen, joining the creative movement at
Nørrebro Kunsthus, and at Nydalen Kunstskole in Oslo. In 2021/2022 she did two longer residencies
in Lisbon, Portugal, at Duplex Air and PADA Studios and was part of a group exhibition at Galleria
PADA, Portugal. Her residencies led to a series of works that was exhibited at Galleri Hos Arne, Nobel
Peace Center in Oslo, Norway. She is currently artist in residence at Palazzo Previtera, Sicily.