Quattro Tempi, Luciano D’Inverno | Reggia di Caserta

We are proud to announce on Friday 5th April at 5.00 pm at the Reggia di Caserta, the opening of the photographic exhibition of Luciano D’Inverno Four Moments in Time.

The exhibition, from a project by Luciano D’Inverno and curated by Gabriella Ibello, tells the landscape of the park and the English garden of the Royal Palace of Caserta . It is the Parkland of the Royal Palace of Caserta that forms the stage for Luciano D’Inverno’s artwork.

We use the word inspiration to indicate a modification of our mind and emotions that spurs us to create something. As may be clear from the word itself, many cultures believe that inspiration comes down to us from a divine spirit or a supernatural presence within man, giving him glimpses of truth and precious insights that are hidden to the majority. This is the spirit that prompted Luciano D’Inverno to undertake his artistic project called Quattro tempi (Four Moments in Time) Here, photography describes one single place as it is traversed by succeeding seasons, light and emotions.
The Parkland of the Royal Palace of Caserta portrays a place where the lineis blurred between inanimate objects and indistinct presences who appear as ghosts, as the author himself puts it: “I decided to take my photographs in Spring and Summer with a folding camera during opening hours. I perceived presences that were non-presences here”.

This landscape project seems shrouded and flitting whilst being true to the light and hues proper to the season. This sensation that everything is suspended- ed in space and time is conveyed by the hazy outlines without any clear landmarks except for the sculptures, although these only serve to chart human sentiments rather than mark actual locations. It all transports us to an intimate contemplative plane.

There is no planned itinerary for Luciano D’Inverno’s visit to the grounds. It is an evolving situation which tracks back while it moves forwards – in terms of memory and in terms of perception.
The essence of his images find expression in these words written by Paul Éluard: “seeing is understanding, judging, transforming, imagining, forgetting and being forgotten, being or disappearing”.

The images, the bitter-sweet feelings of the author crushed by loss and the golden splendor of this place span time and season, touching upon the themes of remembrance and alliteration. Between these things, there is a nexus which gives rise to a story driven by an urge to go beyond the constraints of time and the physical world. The story is expressed in a poetic hermetic language.

This voyage through a place of ancient glory was embarked upon to relate the depth of emotion through images.
And this is a journey that dates back to the days of the Grand Tour of the aristocrats and the breadth of the sentiment it inspires transpires from the author’s fine eye and the careful chronicling of the passing seasons and mutable shades of the light and vegetation.

“The site is uncommonly fine on one of the most fertile plains in the world, and yet the gardens trench on the mountains. From these an aqueduct brings down an entire river, to supply water to the palace and the district; and the whole can, on occasion, be thrown on some artificially-arranged rocks, to form a most glorious cascade. The gardens are beautifully laid out and suit well with a district which itself is through a garden” [Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Italian Journey].

These gardens have a magical quality to them and are part of Luciano’s childhood memories. Once his playground, they have continued to enthrall him. They are the gardens of harmony. This is an old stamping ground that he happened upon once again, but then returned to finish his research work at a harrowing time in his personal life.

His life is marked by the passing of the seasons whilst the images tell of his sorrows, his joys, his inner strength and force of will.
From this point of view, Four Moments in Time is an exploration of sentiment and the meanders of a soul.

This journey involves crossing borders and transcending boundaries, not only because it means going beyond but especially because it talks of overcoming our limits.
But the photographs are more than a personal pilgrimage; they portray scenery that is undeniably and breathtakingly beautiful.

A southern-Italian winter wonderland in cold colors with shadowy stretches of land, sharp lights and subtle reflections is a feast for the eyes. A chromatic consonance composed of few somber elements – white, grey, green and light blue. A dreamy dimension of solitude, magnificence, and memories.

Spring arrives in an explosion of light, a spasm of sadness and a nuanced stratification of shades and accents. A low hum seems to come out from the pictures, ushering us into a mystical haven.
Then summer is upon us with all its life and energy. It catches us up in the excitement of its bright lights, deep stains and colors of presences and non-presences. Because Luciano’s pictures take us to a unique dimension in which the summer visitors to the royal grounds fade into nothingness as if they were apparitions from a shared moment in time and fragments of collective memory from a past life.

Then autumn draws in and represents what Picasso called the Return to Order after Cubism. The tractable aspects of the parkland prevail over its actual physical presence. The light, its color, its dark wild soul and its golden magnificence symbolize a lifetime, poignant memories and deep thoughts.

This artwork is reminiscent of Ghirri’s and Chiaramonte’s style. It is an aesthetic approach that Luciano experiments with, using a folding camera. The images suggest a dual dimension – a physical one that is expressed by the color palette and the architecture and a more intimate plane cloaked by memories, a darker light, and shadows of the soul.

As a photographer, Luciano’s chosen path transcends landscape, his own personal world and time. It pushes forth to capture the essence of a place where the strains of the music of life can be heard, the same sweet notes that wafted through the Palace halls many years ago. It tells of emotions, is punctuated by the seasons and awash with light. A place of possibilities and reason where poetry takes visual form and can be understood.

The world is everything that happens, to quote Wittgenstein, and, in Luciano D’Inverno’s world of Four Moments in Time, what happens is sorrow, solitude, life, non-presence like wraiths, music, color and the sensation of coldness, warmth and a morning breeze.

This world goes beyond portrayal. I use the term beyond to mean the sense of a quest for something that is missing or concealed. But at the same time this project experiments with new beginnings, openings and fresh points of view – all things that only creativity brings to life in a work of art.

A world that is a place yet not a place, beauty, and aesthetic value. An extremely real world with something unworldly about it – a spiritual intimate plane. The visual language of the photographer seeks out the reason behind things and a primordial dimension of time. It is an intricate nesting of elements and suggestions which juxtapose the physical world against the conceptual one. This is the secret behind the visual force of Four Moments in Time. The idea of an image which transcends its own identity. It provides us with a clear message, conveys knowledge and unites various different elements and broken unconnected dimensions as it strives to build a new perspective that will act as a bridge between the artist, the image and the onlooker.