I already knew the work of Corrado De Meo but I had the pleasure of meeting him at JOYA, to discover his pieces, and finally touching them.
It was almost like a ritual of initiation. When I raised one of his pieces, I expected a specific weight determined by its large volumes, but I was hit by a sense of astonishment instead.
What I saw did not correspond to what I was touching. The discrepancy between matter and lightness is undoubtedly the feature of his work, as for him is the cheating of life towards to appear and to be. The artist is intrigued by the intent of generating amazement, and his purpose is to lead people to awareness looking beyond appearances.
Corrado De Meo transforms a passion for jewelry into a profession. He comes from a tradition of goldsmithing and, at one point, he decides to bring his work into the world of contemporary jewelry, becoming a focal point for Italy and part of the board of ‘Associazione Gioiello Contemporaneo’.
He defines himself an artist projected into the nature and this is obvious by the shapes of his creations, which resemble certain organic bodies linked to a primordial world.
Locked shapes in an attempt to find a clear definition, in their own making, overflowing with their purest material.
His research is divided between matter and color. He mainly works on the transformation of matter, immobilizes this process, crystallizing the matter. All his creations are like a frame of that stopped process.
The artist is fascinated by things that experience the assault of time and that lead inevitably matter to undergo transformation processes making them different, as if they acquired another life, another language to tell another story. Because of this fascination towards the passage of time, he calls himself an observer of time and researches it into his work.
In his artistic production, volumes are determined alternatively by the preponderance and power of colors or matters, without aesthetics manipulation. The artist's choice to match a shape to a color isn't related to an intellectual reasoning, but it is absolutely instinctive. The reference to a particular color acts subconsciously.
He makes a great use of primary colors such as yellow, blue and red, to which particularly the artist feels a strong emotional connection. Talking about white and black, he argues that white shocks the matter making it abstract, while undoubtedly he feels closer to black because it is full of mystery, introspective and thoughtful, with a stronger human dimension: a color capable of telling a story.
Corrado De Meo's creations stand out even for the large size. In the process of temporal immobilization of matter, he doesn't think about wearability. He creates in the conviction that everyone has an object in which recognize itself and that tells a story to read.
It is clear that brooches and bracelets are made to be worn, but they could also become small sculptures.
When I look at his pieces I perceive immediately the surface tension in his wrinkled, shrunken, primordial forms, which in some cases explode with a vibrant color. A moment later, by lifting them up, emotions change, completely helpless and flipped by their lightness.
What it really enchants in his jewelry is just the effect of astonishment, which excites and fuels the desire for discovery.