To Giorgio Cecchetto

Published: 01.09.2016
Mirella Cisotto Mirella Cisotto
Mirella Cisotto
Edited by:
Edited at:
Edited on:
Giorgio Cecchetto.
Giorgio Cecchetto

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Giorgio Cecchetto of the Padova School passed away in June 2016. Mrs. Mirella Cisotto, curator of many jewellery exhibitions, curated his last exhibition in Oratorio di San Rocco and wrote this article in memoriam of the Italian artist.
I met Giorgio Cecchetto some years ago when I began to deal with contemporary jewellery and in particular when I started to set up the big exhibition ‘Gioielli d’Autore. Padova e la Scuola dell’Oro’ housed in the Palazzo della Ragione at Padua, in 2008. An event that confirmed, also to a wider audience, the happy and peculiar reality of the Paduan Goldsmiths’ School, from a historical-critical point of view.

In this context, it was Luisa Bazzanella who skilfully outlined his critical profile, pointing out how Cecchetto’s research, from the beginning, had started “Cecchetto obseves the realty surrounding him in search of the founding elements that enable him to turn his understanding of them into abstract shapes. His is a creative experience which, together with his intense emotion, leads him to a mystical pereption of life”.

Giorgio Cecchetto, Brooch Parquet, 1987.
Gold, 4,5 x 4,5 cm

Even then, he presented himself to the public with pieces of amazing workmanship which perfectly tallied with the style trend of the School: harmonious and perfect balance of form given by the use of descriptive geometry, solid harmony in the sequence of modules, extreme refinement in the surface finishing that sometimes evolved in skilful calligraphic suggestions. At that time were already present in his works the sense of memory, the hints at the surrounding reality, the oneiric interpretation of Nature and its elements, the metaphysical research, the poetic license which made his works unique and special.

Giorgio Cecchetto, Pendant Convergenza, 2015.
Bronze, brass, 6 x 3 cm

Either the artist gave, through the embossing of the plates, volumetric substance to the shapes of plane geometry - in particular the circle, the triangle, the square and all the shapes that derive from these - or the shapes themselves were described by concatenations of modular elements, his work has always been led by a lucid conceptual and stylistic precision that, excluding any purely ornamental component, aimed at highlighting the creativity and elegance of the project idea. The need to take the form to its highest purity found an opportunity in the use of the “golden sections” and persisted by his approaching philosophical and existential contents. And if, since the beginning, his meditation on matter started from essential shapes and moved towards the achievement of new plastic dimensions, in the last years his works become an expression of a deeper and more intense spiritual tension.
When we saw the works that Giorgio displayed in the recent exhibition ORI ENTAMENTI and so on, we all were deeply impressed, as they were completely different from the previous ones we knew, a real break with what once could appear precious, perfect, aesthetically pleasing, the result of research work carried out following the tradition of cultured and personal thought.

In the meantime, I was deeply moved by the strength and confidence that he showed, even though heavily tried by illness as if he wished to reassure those who were worried for him, by his clear gaze.

Giorgio Cecchetto, Necklace Untitled, 2016.
Iron, copper, from the series Capitolo III Chiodi per carne

From a deep reflection on time, the human condition, suffering, arises here, as a witness of an eternal present, the symbol of the Cross, the key subject of the six works of art present in the exhibition. Works that portray themselves as a prayer, a ‘laical prayer’ by which Giorgio means to restore - quoting his words - the faded image of a Christ out of a reality that is falling upon our lives.

Giorgio Cecchetto, Piece Cruces, 2016.
Iron, from the series Capitolo I, 19 x 4,3 cm

Iron here prevails and becomes an instrument for primordial, essential, sharp shapes which turn into crosses, chains, bangles where nails chase each other, follow one another, nail down getting stuck or fixed, merciless in what we feel is our flash, the defenseless part of our being, the frailty and vulnerability of existence. Necklaces are rings of an endless chain, the weak incarnation of suffering and anxiety that run through our life. They are works of extreme strength, hard and restrained at the same time, imbued with suffering, but also with the awareness that the trials of life are challenges we are called to face and from where we cannot, we must not, we don’t want to escape. They are works of art that call for silence, reflection, worship, the memory of an individual and collective past, an ancient and present history, the sorrow common to the whole of Humankind.
His message is strong, and maybe just now we can understand it in its entirety.

Giorgio Cecchetto, Armlet Chiodi, 2016.
Iron, from the series Capitolo III Chiodi per carne, 8,5 x 2 cm

My regret is not to have deepened his acquaintance, better understood and followed with more attention a great artist who, in his discretion, never showed off his ability, deeply respected the others’ work, in a courtly way avoided disputes and conflicts so frequent in the artistic field, but also knew how to compete, with rigorous professionalism, when an opportunity arose.

We remember his kindness, fairness, diligence, and punctuality, the subtle irony together with a remarkable sharpness in capture the essence of things and situations. We also remember the satisfaction he expressed for the special mention on the occasion of the second edition of the 'Premio Internazionale Mario Pinton' and how, in the first edition, his work was considered by the public ‘the best work’.

In his last will, with reference to the Paduan School, he left the invitation to all the artists who take part in this experience, or will be involved in the future, to preserve and keep alive all teachings and expressive values in unity”.
Also, those who did not see him frequently will miss his light blue eyes, his sweet and shy smile, his few words.

…in the first part of my life, I stayed with the others. Now I am still with the others but in a completely different way.

Goodbye Giorgio.

About the author

Mirella Cisotto Nalon, Head of the Culture Tourism Museums Area and of the Padua Municipal Library, has been working for the Civic Museums and the Department of Culture at the Municipality of Padua since 1979.
She supervises and coordinates cultural and educational events, exhibitions, shows, festivals and promotes the historical and artistic heritage of the city (see for example the Interactive Multimedia Area of the Scrovegni Chapel or educational projects such as Impara il Museo, Notturni d’Arte, IncontraPadova…). Contemporary jewellery specialist, Mirella set up the international jewellery exhibition Pensieri Preziosi, The International Award Mario Pinton, and has curated several solo and collective art exhibitions. She is interested also in Art Glass. Mirella has issued more than one hundred publications. Serious attention has been paid to the environment and the animal world with several cultural initiatives (such as the exhibition Cuori sulla Terra).