Light Reactive Organic Sculptures comprise an extensive body of work that has evolved over the past two decades. The work focuses on reductive investigations at the intersection of sculpture and painting, and explores the continuously shifting relationship between light and material. Despite an elemental material vocabulary — found wood, beeswax, and pigment — the work’s physical constellation becomes both the carrier of an explicitly painterly event, while also being the foundation of an immaterial phenomenon. The pieces are often examinations of phenomenological processes, where a hollow or empty space — a tangible emptiness — turns out to be the actual center of the work. Opposites and contradictions, as well as the complex dialectic between them, are the fundamental themes. The orchestration of material and light, presence and absence, things found and things formed, all resist clear fixation, thereby maintaining and creating works with their own non-derivable reality.
The primary material organization is found wood that forms the base for color built with pigment and beeswax. The wood is harvested from urban debris at building constructions and deconstructions, and in its worn and deteriorated condition, creates an instant history. These structures become the foundation for an architecture of color in which the material is color, and the color is material. Built by suspending varying degrees of pigment in layer over thin layer of beeswax, light travels into the wax and encircles the pigment. This results in light reactivity, and juxtaposed to the static, aged structure of the wood, the sculptures’ pigmented wax evolves and adapts to changing ambient light situations. These sculptures hold light.
Girardoni’s use of wax, influenced by Jasper John’s paintings with encaustic — such as Flag and Target — and related to Brice Marden’s use of the material in his opaque, monochrome pictures from the 1960s, ultimately led the artist to sculptural procedures: “Wax catalyzed the move away from ‘painting’ … The beeswax allowed me to ‘build’ color.” Girardoni prefers using wooden slats, boards, or parts of wooden beams as construction material, where traces of their use have been recorded. To this the artist applies the material color — pigmented wax. Through their ready-made character the artist instills a uniqueness and reference to life in the objects. At first glance, the works, which are oriented towards geometric forms and series, seem like minimalist art in the succession of Carl Andre, Sol LeWit and Donald Judd. The major difference in Girardoni’s works, however, is that they have an organic and human atmosphere, while the cubes, fences and plates, due to their industrial production, emanate coolness. (…) Even though Girardoni leaves both the inner and outer panels abstract, he is nevertheless concerned with a contemplative experience, and not solely with a matter-of- fact inventory of color, material, and structure. Joseph Beuys had attributed beeswax a symbolic-spiritual function, that of warmth and energy. These may also be experienced in Girardoni’s objects, paired with painterly, coloristic, and tactile qualities.
– Florian Steininger