Dialogue on painting with Beatrice Alici

Dialogue on painting with Beatrice Alici

Beatrice Alici is an Italian painter and activist with several international and national exhibitions behind her. Just to name a couple: A gift to the dark in Vienna, a group show opened last January 14th and closed on February 11th, and in London the group show Cross Breeze curated by Domenico De Chirico at the Oneroom gallery. In Italy she recently closed her solo show: Moonbath Magic-Beatrice Alici at the Michela Rizzo.2 Gallery, inaugurated in Mestre last June 1st and concluded on July 7th. The talent and imagination of this artist made me think about asking her a few questions.

Ritratto di Beatrice Alici, ph Angela Marigo

If you had to present yourself to someone who doesn’t know you with an artwork, which would you choose and why?
I would choose my most recent works (2021-2023) because I think that every work you make is your own self-portrait. While, in the broadest sense of the question, as references I have while painting, I would certainly mention Inka Essenhigh, especially Tree Spirit, Green Goddess I and II, and Late August. And also the photographs from the early 1900s by Anne Brigman.

What is the current health state of painting?
Well, very well, I see it beautiful and luxuriant.

Beatrice Alici, Ashes, 2023, oil and acrylic on canvas, 140 x 180 cm, ph courtesy the artist

How is your work usually born?
Sometimes simply from images in my head: I could almost speak of visions. Sometimes instead I start from shots taken in landscapes and then I fantasize about it. It amuses me to paint without an idea that is too clear and precise and to see what happens as it unfolds and becomes matter.

As an artist and activist what do you think is your duty to society?
Contributing to feminist philosophy which is a topic that touches me closely, because every feminism is born from a trauma, quoting Michela Murgia. As far as the art world is concerned, I’m tired of hearing about “female” artists, of seeing only women’s exhibitions, and so on. This continuous having to specify the gender of perpetual membership and constitutes a separate section instead of simply integrating us into the “Artist” section. Oh well, not to mention today’s politics… the situation is serious.

Beatrice Alici, Last vision, 2023, oil and acrilyc on linen, 150 x 200 cm, ph courtesy the artist

David Hockney often recalls in his interviews that painting will never die, what do you think?
I fully agree with everything David Hockney says in his interviews, from the obviousness that painting is eternal to his considerations regarding painting more generally, as an expressive practice. We all paint already in kindergarten and in the academies Painting is taught, there are those who choose it and carry it forward and maybe then there are those who understand that they prefer another medium. Even in the event of a mass extinction (which is not far away) one of the first things new primitive men will do (if there ever are any) is to jot down some pictures on the wall of a cave. Painting is something innate, instinctive, essential, primordial.

Francesco Liggieri


Beatrice Alici, Moonbath Magic
01.06.23 – 07.07.23
GMR.2 Mestre


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