Maurizio Cannavacciuolo

I gemelli Paquitos vanno in città

“Evident figures through superimpositions and juxtapositions of multiple levels of attention, without absolutely no surface supremacy, without depth, nothing is backstage or decorum, it’s the agency of readability, everything is defined in a clear lattice of signs drawn with pungent and sagacious reflection.”

Donated by Carlo Traglio. Oil on canvas, 1995, 190.2 x 109.9 cm.

Resume navigation

Born in Naples in 1954. He lives and works in Rome.

Active on the international scene since the 1970s, Maurizio Cannavacciuolo has always used the most classical of painting techniques: oil on canvas. His works tend towards an extremely elaborate and ironic narrative, in which the dense interweaving of the background (often entirely painted with contrasting patterns) hides underlying levels of incongruous associations that require time and patience to be read in detail. His is in fact a figurative art with a strong symbolic imprint, whose aim is to induce the viewer to adopt a perception that goes far beyond the superficial interplay of colour. Cannavacciuolo’s pictorial style is also steeped in references to the Mediterranean tradition, with influences from the Middle East. Thus, with great stylistic freedom, it ranges from the world of Japanese theatre to that of comic books to geometric abstractionism, Byzantine mosaics and cartoon stylisations, with recurring iconographic elements such as insects, flowers and bodies represented as anatomical studies along with self-portraits of the artist himself.