Michael Venezia’s early work can be placed within the NY art scene of the 1960s, which succeeded abstract expressionism and in which an innovative theoretical discourse on painting was formulated.
With the autonomous, depersonalised creation process of the spray paintings, Venezia offered a unique reflection on the painterly gesture as a presumed condition for authenticity and authorship. By means of a spray gun, the paint was excessively applied to the surface until a drawing was formed ‘autonomously’. The pictorial qualities of this technique could not be anticipated; they emphasise Venezia’s interest in the process-based nature of painting.
A preference for metallic acrylic emulsions goes in line with an increasing use, in this period , of industrial materials and production techniques, yet the exhibition also includes some very nice results where irregular lines surround the central motif. These small details are interesting in that they allude to a ‘brush-like’ touch, even if they are, in reality, just a residue of the evaporated paint emulsion.