Dono Ad Arte is a fundraising project created by Potenza Studio in support of the Veneto Region Health System to offer help with the terrible national health emergency caused by Covid-19. A small contribution using Gianmaria Potenza’s art, with the hope that our project will bring a little beauty into your thoughts and homes.
The title of the campaign Dono Ad Arte (literally “I donate with art”) plays with the latin words “ad arte”, which in Italian means “artfully made” but also refers to Potenza’s art being the heart of the project.
Five silkscreen prints from the Tarot series have been donated by Gianmaria Potenza for this initiative. By purchasing one of these works, you can make a contribution and you’ll have a new work of art in your home! The cost of each screen print is € 500.00 and the proceeds from the sale will be donated entirely to the “Sostegno Emergenza Coronavirus” regional fund.
On this page you will find all the works available and constantly updated. Choose your favorite and write to firstname.lastname@example.org to finalize the purchase!
The works are part of the collection of 22 serigraphs signed by Gianmaria Potenza between 1989 and 1991, in limited editions, of which there are 99 numbered with Arabic numerals, 40 with Roman numerals and 10 artist’s proofs, and screen printed with up to 40 passages on Fabriano paper with metal insertion colours.
Recently, the I TAROCCHI series has been the subject of two exhibitions in Russia, at the Museum of the Art of the XX and XXI Century in Saint Petersburg (November-December 2019) and at the Regional Museum of Art of Vologda (December-January 2020). In February the Venetian stage of the tour began at the Romanian Institute of Culture and Humanistic Research in Venice. Unfortunately, Milanese dates are suspended for the moment.
“The twenty-two Greater Arcana, each a symbol of a stage in the life and development of man, are depicted as characters, busts and faces, whose attire reinforces their nature. In this way the Tarots become genuine masks worn by man in the game of changing roles that he is forced to play throughout the course of his life. The artist’s vision not only emphasises how relative each point of view is and the transitory nature of any given role, but also man’s central position in interpreting the reality in which he is immersed.” M. Canducci e A. Ascari in Gianmaria Potenza, I Tarocchi (Electa 1990, pp 23-67 and pp. 5-10 English Translation)
The sixth Arcanum, the Lovers or simply the Lover, was traditionally represented as Hercules at the Crossroads, hesitating between two roads and two women, one virtuous and the other seductive. In Potenza’s work the folds of the headdress almost become the curtain of an alcove containing a matrimonial bed. The classic figure of Hercules hesitating between saving his virtuousness and being seduced here appears much more resolute: he seems already to have made his mind up. This is not a playful Arcanum but an invitation to make a forthright decision and not to procrastinate, but opt for experience which is the only real mentor in life. The Lovers passion means a decision concerning the other, involvement, wantonnes and submission.
Every end generates a new beginning. The bone placed horizontally in the middle of the painting stands for the divide between the lower and upper dimensions and life and death, but is also the spar in a symbolic cross whose axes are fixed by the two heads in the Arcanum. The symmetry seems to stand for the equality of all individuals when faced with Death. A sickle shape can be made out in the folds in the headdress: the sickle of death but also a moon which stands for constant renewal, since the last phase of the waning Moon will be followed by the first of the waxing Moon. Death expresses a radical change, a through and profound renewal. The flower decoration stresses the positive aspects of this Arcanum, recalling nature’s reawakening in Spring after the long sleep of Winter.
In Gianmaria Potenza’s eight Arcanum, Justice, the head-ornament is a scales. The scales are definitely tipped and although they consist of the same elements the two specular parts are not perfectly symmetrical. Given that in general Justice is a search for equilibrium, this interpretation highlights an awareness of the relative nature of any given point of view. Justice thus becomes the ability to weigh or value things in an objective manner: its aim is thus not to level out , but to give the right modicum of dignity to each aspect of diversity. Sensitive to the changes that new knowledge and new experience may bring, Justice is never static or immobile but dynamic, an unending and incessant search, since all forms of equilibrium are temporary and relative.
RUOTA DELLA FORTUNA
The Wheel of Fortune brings us to the themes of duality and complementarity, extending them so that they stand for natural cycles of the life of man and of the Universe. This alternating becomes transiency and instability, and the Wheel symbolises the unceasing succession of experiences. Fortune is meant as fate which is neither good nor bad but simply ephemeral, presenting chances to be grasped before they disappear into the void. The upper half of Potenza’s Arcanum consists of a solar Wheel whose rays correspond to numbers ordered in a sequence: the numbers appear in their purity as single symbols, almost alchemical elements combined in the pectoral in one of an infinite number of possible sets. The pectoral- roulette becomes the Game of Life: chance or casualty?
In his majesty and solemnity, the Pope appears as an imposing figure and his headgear testifies to the importance of his role as pontifex, a bridge (pons) between the human and the divine. The upper half of the Potenza’s Arcanum is entirely taken up by the Tiara which stretching upwards represents the spiritual dimension. Almost like the cupola of an Oriental church, his headdress seems to suggest that the authority he exercises symbolises even more than the sum of individual religious faiths. The compact and linear lower half of the painting seems to testify to an human aspect: the enormous Tiara stresses the Pope’s great powers of comprehension and his propensity to meditation. The frankness of this figure conveys the idea of a good counsellor and strong moral presence – a protectiveness that is not always apparent, but is decisive and powerful.