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Bedazzled by Filomeno

Bedazzled by Filomeno

Joseph Sciorra (January 6, 2008)
Michael Bodycomb
“Death of Blinded Philosopher” (2006), embroidery on silk shantung, by Angelo Filomeno.

Allegory and needlework meet in the sumptuous work of visual artist Angelo Filomeno.


I stopped by P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center in Queens today to catch the exhibition “Senso Unico” before it closed on Monday. Among the eight contemporary Italian visual artists featured, I was pleasantly surprised to find the work of Angelo Filomeno, an artist whose bejeweled work in machine embroidery I hav

e admired for some time. 


Filomeno, who hails from Ostuni (Brindisi province, Puglia), has been living and working in New York City since 1992. His mother taught him to sew as a child and when he was seven-years-old he apprenticed with a local tailor for six years. He received a degree in painting from Accademia di Belle Arti di Lecce and worked in the design studios of major fashion houses in Milan.


His embroidered work is sumptuous, often including semi-precious stone on silk. This attention to craftsmanship works in dynamic tension to the highly allegorical subject matter with its overt Rabelaisian proclivities, e.g., a vomiting peacock or a shitting philosopher.


While the “Senso Unico” exhibit is closing, Filmeno’s piece “ Death of Blinded Philosopher” can be seen at another New York exhibit, “Pricked: Extreme Embroidery” at the Museum of Arts and Design until March 9th

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