Rivista d'arte e cultura 2 febbraio 1976

Nino Gorni is among those most dedicated of artists from Brescia, in whose work they attempt to conceal their strong personality from immediate perception. It is my opinion that Nino Gorni is establishing himself both for his seriousness, as well as for his flair, which evinces a profound talent. His paintings carry the force of rare expressive power. They consist to two creative models, which, though distinct, become fused into a unique, simultaneous and harmonious synthesis. This synthesis is of the nature of precious aesthetics. It is touching by the very force of its contents. Within these contents appear the interests of human beings, interests which lead to a profound dialogue on truth. And because of the truth contained in one's deep restlessness, in one's ever-moving feelings, this restlessness constantly searches for recognition in the movements on canvas. It is this restlessness that causes the narration to be based on the essence and cause of life itself. The first model comes about at the stage when objects take shape on the canvas.

This is when the area of the painting is broken into its constituent parts. It is, in itself, highly expressive. The structure of the painting takes its outline, and its single components are placed in equilibrium. These individual elements are what gives life to the painting. They are typified by confident, eloquent strokes which evince an exquisite, basic mastery. The ease of the strokes results from personal development and form an expression of thought. Although spontaneous, and however much it is the primary reason for creating such work, this expression of thought is controlled by intellectual research. The second stage is that of applying paint to the work. Nino uses a most refined technique of impasto and background painting. We see tonalities and hints reminiscent of the Renaissance, giving us the impression that Nino's paintings submerge us in a living atmosphere of lights, shadows and half-lights. Yet, what stands out in its entirety and all its consistency, is Nino's originality as a contemporary artist, relating everything, as in a homogenous whole. He does this in an interplay which is varied and graced by changes, matching, and thin layers, all closely befitting the subject.

All this points to our modern day and age, yet it includes, and dramatically so, the universe of human life, with its multiplicity of existential meanings; meanings that in all ages have matured as an interior condition. His themes are based on common people, especially on sea-farers. This is exemplified in "The Anxiety of Waiting", a painting which is crowded with a multitude of people. Their plight appears mainly on their faces, with each one expressing it to varying degrees. Then it is perceived in the atmosphere of the painting, in the waters of the sea, and along the quay, in all its visible torment. It is a grandiose composition, difficult to achieve in view also of the perspective of space and depth. Another remarkable work is "Fight in a Public House". This piece is wide-embracing thanks to a clever use of perspective. The value of an event narrated in the painting, apart from the painful episode itself, lies in the different attitudes of the surrounding figures.

Through them we enter into the vast subject of symbolism which appears throughout Nino Gorni's paintings. Here, however, it is stressed by means of a precise, dynamic human introspection, of such a psychological rendering that makes one shudder. I wanted to mention these two paintings for particular reasons, apart from the fact that both are truly valid works of art. The first , set out of doors is also conditioned by the force of sea and sky, shows us the merging of human and nature. The second, placed indoors, closes man inside solid walls. At the same time, man's plight, although constrained by the setting, bursts into that part of man that is his soul. When faced with Nino Gorni's paintings, on the other hand, we realize that here is a complete artist. His unmistakable poetics go hand in hand with his own most original of techniques to express so singularly, yet so objectively, a reality filtered through his innate sensibility.
1999 Alessandro Gorni