There are truths that go beyond the capacity of reason which, having reached its limit extreme, it uses symbolic language.

This use activates a different function of the human mind that must not be confused with the simple use of fantasy, the creativity that invents beautiful images: it’s not about invention, but it’s an allusion to a reality, not irrational, but rather over-rational. The allusive power of the images stimulates the intuitive and visionary capacity of the intellect.
A photograph or a “realist” framework places the observer in front of reality as it is manifest, and not necessarily as it is because philosophically they are two diffrent things and even, according to theories, in contradiction.
Some images reveal, through the symbols, other scenarios perceivable through the narrative structure that the artist manages to “weave” with the languages of painting.

This is the case, for example, of the father of the metaphysical movement Giorgio De Chirico, who, in the painting “Canto d’amore” – which touched René Magritte – in the appearance of disconnected objects, he depicted the essence of his childhood and early adolescence. Christian Carlini, in his historical and artistic path, blends metaphysical and surrealist paintings. His representation of reality becomes a representation of a concept meditated, internalized, which in the imaginative metaphor of painting it becomes a fabula, a story; in the story, reality becomes history, memory that wants to be narrated, but which, though taking place over time, is set by Christian Carlini icastically, as if to assume the characteristics of timelessness.

The hyperrealism of Christian Carlini is not an extreme reality in the representation of his transfiguration of a thought, revelation of an interiority of which an icon, whose light makes you feel the echo of a supernatural silence, can give voice. When photography was invented in the first half of the nineteenth centurypainting could not help reacting to this challenge, so the Impressionists understood that they could do what photography could never give back: represent the vision of the moment through light and colors, representing the intoxication that the vibration of color produces on the soul of the painter thanks to the light of that particular moment of the day. Just think of the Rouen Cathedral series by Monet. What is reality then? And what is the most representation faithful to it? The cold and objective one that clearly separates the object from the subject, the emotions from the impressions, or the one that represents the relationship between the subject and the object and the effect of the second on the first? It is the ancient controversy that separates Idealists and Realists, even present in the interpretation of Quantum mechanics. Since ancient times men from different cultures have hypothesized the existence of a reality that goes beyond a physical and material one, a reality that is beyond what is physical, and therefore “metaphysics”, invisible to the eyes, but visible, as Plato believed, with the eyes of the Intellect, of the mind, of the soul, or still reachable through the meditation. But not only the philosopher or the mystic seek and reach the highest peaks of the spirit reaching the “Vision”: there are artists who besides “seeing” know also depict, like Christian Carlini. He is one of those artists who live on to make art as a true vocation: like a shaman, he gives a face to mystery, and then reveals it.

He is one of those rare people who know how to see”that reality”, meditate on it, contemplate it and depict it in the composition. His works are not a simple representation of the True, but rather an arcane that reveals its self through hyper-realistic painting and painting. The title of each work is the code and the key to interpret the metaphor and grasp the meaning of the whole. Reality that Christian Carlini paints with an absolute talent, and a mastery that he is ancient and modern knowledge of technique, it is a metaphor in the true etymological sense of the term: every object, be it flower, fruit, stone or muffin, is transmuted in the particular combination chosen by him, in symbol.
The term “metaphorcomes from the Greek metaphérō, which meansI transport“: it is a transfer of the meaning of one word over another, by replacing a term with another one that has a greater expressive charge; so, for example, Carlini, in the work entitled “Immediate judgment” – which could call for dark and dramatic – puts a muffin in a green crepe wrapping made more palatable from a cream that tastes of black cherry.
The muffin is placed above six stones assembled as if they were a dolmen that forces four colored lilies orange. The latter recall the idea that to support the weight of a fact irreversible is the “sacrifice of beauty“.

Christian Carlini, on a black background, so that colors and details can be well distinguished, shows to the observer an unusual composition which in the title places the distinction between law and justice.
So the illusory and showy spectacle – but precisely because of this sheer appearance and how far away from that true reality that the artist’s gaze takes – of human law crushes the ancient transcendent fortress of the lily that in ours reading is justice. So too, in the work “Sorry for the delay “, what we see immediately it is a piece of cake cube-shaped, leavened, with chocolate, with toasted almonds on top, cherry syrup and spiral-shaped white cream.


The dessert is placed on a transparent glass plate that recalls the form of a pecten. The chocolate cake makes you think of porous earth than in some way has been enriched by beauty, but it is not the trivial beauty that stimulates greediness and mouth watering, Maestro Carlini goes further: the spiral-shaped white cream it is perhaps the breath of Zephyr that drove Aphrodite to the earth. And right in Spring, symbolized by cherries, Aphrodite arrives in Cyprus to give hers fruits reds of passion that irrigate and vivify, in addition to the earth, even the water from which it has arise. The toasted almond is the ancient amygdala, symbol of femininity and feminine, and it is toasted, burned because the man has focused on the superficial and obvious vision of beauty: he did not decipher the mystery, did not go further, unable to see the reality that is beyond immediacy. Again, through the artist, Aphrodite returns despite human limitations in accepting her and with irony she says: “Sorry for the delay”.


Dr. in Philosophy and Human Sciences, M.I.U.R, essayist and Writer

Member of the Concept Board of the Modigliani Institute


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