In 2004, Bruna Esposito was invited to the Gwangju Biennial in South Korea. The title of the exhibition was “A grain of dust – a drop of water, a drop of water”. It was while working on her show for the Gwangju Biennia that Bruna had an ephiphany when she came upon a lost pearl earring which used to belong to the artist’s mother. She described the event as ” (…) a mirage. I took the lens, looked carefully and realised that it was me reflected on the pearl, so I said ‘this is what I was looking for’. At that moment I felt a great serenity. ” For Esposito, the pearl is a metaphor for a life enclosed within its secret existence and perfection. If we think about it, a pearl is just a grain of dust that penetrates into a shell, as a foreign body, being immediately isolated from the mollusk and rendered harmless through a stratification. This theme has been Bruna Esposito’s main focus on her Perle Rare Cycle from 2004 – 2019.
The exhibition at Centro San Fedele shows how the Perle Rare Cylce has evolved throughout the years. The photograph shows the faces of those close to the artists reflected on both a white and a black pearl on a black background. This allows Bruna to capture the invisible duality of opposites within just the very same person:light / shadow, day / night, masculine / feminine, right / left. In words of the artist, ” (…) each portrait was an adventure into the unknown. We set out on a journey towards the unpredictable“.
Image Credits: Centro San Fedele, FL Gallery and Bruna Esposito © | Special acknowledgement: Manuela Gandini from Artribune