"Rossetti’s work outlines the implications of feverishly looking at, studying, and absorbing painting, while retracing the imprint it makes consciously and subconsciously on his production". —Mousse Magazine

Giangiacomo Rossetti’s work includes, amongst other things, paintings of himself. He embeds his own image—and those of some of the people in his life—in a medley of compositions crediting Renaissance masters, Arnold Böcklin and the Pre-Raphaelites. By repainting these thoroughly studied subjects, the artist claims their ownership. Irreverence settles in. Rossetti reconfigures these acclaimed compositions by inhabiting them with his own presence, with his own image. Half-heartedly, his audacity is covered up behind smears of adulation. This is precisely where Rossetti departs from the classical master copy. This is where he rips off the cord.

His infiltrating gesture reanimates history’s buoyant images and depletes them of their original significance. Or perhaps he overcharges their meaning. At any rate, he pushes their symbolic value to a point of abruption. Time and again, the artist dissects and recontextualizes the idolatry of painting. He slits these paragons’ throats, stitches them back into his own Frankenstein-made Lilith. And as a result, these ghoulish patricides hold court for a subjective vision of art’s genealogy that is committed to the dissemination of painting’s nonlinear evolution. Gestures trudge precariously. Every move is as precise as its treatment of history is potentially painful, and, consequently, the pictures act as mnemonic devices, which sever the fingers of the past to ride the knuckles of contemporaneity.


Giangiacomo Rossetti (b. 1989, Milan, Italy) lives and works in New York.

Rossetti attended the Accademia di Belle Arti di Brera in Milan and in 2019 graduated from Die Institut Kunst FHNW in Basel. His solo exhibitions include shows in Mendes Wood DM, São Paulo (2022); Galleria Federico Vavassori, Milan (2021); Fiorucci Art Trust, London (2021); Greene Naftali, New York (2020); Mendes Wood DM, Brussels (2019); Riverside, Bern (2018); Federico Vavassori, Milan (2017); Warm, São Paulo (2016).

His work has been featured in several group exhibitions such in Castello di Rivoli Museo d’Arte Contemporanea (2022); David Zwirner, New York (2022); Jeffrey Deitch, Los Angeles (2022); Fondazione CRC, Cuneo (2021); Aspen Art Museum (2020); Mendes Wood DM at d’Ouwe Kerk, Retranchement (2020); Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens, Ghent (2020); Modern Art, London (2020); Greene Naftali Gallery, New York (2019); Mendes Wood DM, Brussels (2018); Galleria Federico Vavassori, Milan (2018).

Selected Artworks

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