Metamorphoses by Merlino Mayo at LEA – Full Sim Project – 1st turn – 2011-2012 Show Open till 15 March 2012.

First of all I want to thank LEA (Linden Endowment for the Arts) and The LEA committee (Bryn Oh, Dancoyote Antonelli, Dekka Raymaker, JayJay Zifanwe, L1 Loire, Sasun Steinbeck, Solo Mornington, Werner Kurosawa, PatriciaAnne Daviau -advisor-) who trusted me and other artists (Artistide Despres, Charlotte Bartlett, comet Morigi, Freewee Ling, Glyph Graves, Harter Fall, Merlino Mayo, Mikati Slade, Misprint Thursday, Oberon Onmura, RAG Randt, Secret Rage, Selavy Oh, Sowa Mai, Ux Hax, Zachh Cale) for the first round LEA Land Grants to give me the opportunity to use a big space as a full sim to express my art.

Taking inspiration from the 1st book and a few of other episodes of the “Metamorphoses”, word that from greek means “change of shape”, written in latin by Publius Ovidius, this new project aims to build a path of multi levels within an allegorical vision related to the current age of crisis and transformation of human beings and our society.

Mannerism's most famous fresco: Giulio Romano's illusionism invents a dome overhead and dissolves the room's architecture in the Fall of the Giants.

The way to see the whole work would formally very different but conceptually similar to the fresco dedicated to the “Fall of the Giants” by Giulio Romano in the Palazzo Te in Mantua (Mantova), where the representation becomes a metaphor of the times lived and precarious power and human ambitions; So going on other examples are possible like the trasformations of Aracne, Daphne, Icarus, Heliades sisters, Medusa, ect. The outer and inner change of form and substance of living beings and their natural relationships into something different, new and unexpected, from the creative process naturally with technology through the lens of the symbolism of Myth and the squared glass of Science.

It is very interesting to see the origin of name Palazzo Te: “The famous villa, designed for parties, receptions and “idleness” of the Duke of Mantua, was built on an island in direct contiguity with the city center, known since the Middle Ages Tejeto, or Te. The hypothesis most likely derive from the term ’tilietum’ (place of linden trees) or from the Celtic ‘tezza’ linked with Latin ‘atteggia’ in english ‘attitude’, both meaning ‘hut’.” *from

Obviously the project is not complete about the whole huge Ovid’s work, and in start I’ve done just some main episodes, but my intention is to work on it in future, it will take time for sure. Stay tuned.

Merlino Mayo

Book I: Cosmogony, Ages of Man, Gigantes, Daphne;

0  Metamorphoses – Start point “Palazzo Te,  Mantova”

1  Metamorphoses – I – Cosmogony – The Creation of Universe

2  Metamorphoses – II – Cosmogony The Elements – EL MENTUM (2010)

3  Metamorphoses – III – Cosmogony – The Creation of Sea and Sky

4  Metamorphoses – IV – Ages of Man – The Golden Age of Man

5  Metamorphoses – V – Raise of Giants

6  Metamorphoses – VI – Fall of Giants

7  Metamorphoses – VII – Daphne

Some references:

LEA, LEA, Metamorphoses Illustrations First Book, Latin Original Texts, Book I in Latin, english text, virtual tour into the Room of the Giants.


Silk Roads – International Biennial of Culture
from the MACRO Museum in Testaccio to Second Life
MiC – Museums of Rome Capital
Opening 2012 January 23, 23.00 (02.00pm SLT)

The contemporary Chinese art, the complexity of its ancient roots Dao and Zen, Chaos and Cosmos, is the result of a long painting way, which was liberated by a starting manual skill as a simple confirmation of the tradition. So going beyond the executive discipline, acquiring a subjective value of gestures and a conceptual quality that allows us to recognize the latest Chinese generation in a position in the international artistic research.
The exhibition “The Great Celestial Abstraction” curated by Achille Bonito Oliva for the MACRO Testaccio in Rome, in the International Biennial of Culture “Silk Roads”, in Second Life passes through a recreation by Merlino Mayo, who has set up a path in which his performance, digital and immersive, brings us in contact with the great contemporary Chinese artists. So the works on canvas become three-dimensional with the environment surrounded by echoes of Oriental traditions.
Along the way, you will find all the notes (in Italian and English) related to Chinese artists, the curator and the presentation of the texts Commissioner for Culture and the Superintendent of Culture.

Marina Bellini (aka Mexi Lane)

Responsable and Curator at MiC

Video from MiC virtual show

References to the show in Real Life in Rome at the MACRO of Testaccio from 16 Nov 2011 to 15 Jan 2012 :

On display the selection by Achille Bonito Oliva of 32 artworks coming from the show at NAMOC – National Art Museum of China in Bejing.04-19-2010.

Lei Hong (1972), Li Huasheng (1944), Li Xiangyang (1957), Lian Quan (1948), Liu Gang (1965), Liu Xuguang (1958), Ma Kelu (1954), Meng Luding (1962), Tan Ping (1960), Xu Hongming (1971), Yu Youhan (1943), Zhang Hao (1962), Zhang Jian Jun (1955), Zhang Yu (1959), Zhou Yangming (1971).

The Great Celestial Abstraction – Chinese Art of the 21st Century’ is organised under the patronage of the Chinese Embassy in Italy and sponsored by the Ministry of Cultural Heritage Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Roma Capitale, Department of Cultural Affairs and Historical Center – Superintendence of Cultural Heritage, Chamber of Commerce of Rome; organization and museum services by Zètema Progetto Cultura.


Achille Bonito Oliva

Umberto Broccoli Superintendent for Cultural Heritage in the City of Rome

Presentation by the curator Achille Bonito Oliva of the 15 chinese artists partecipants.

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