Italian painter Flavio de Marco (Lecce, 1975) reflects on the contemporary world as a place where our vision is filtered through omnipresent screens and standardized images. He utilises the computer screen as a frame to depict today’s world and investigates this virtual space as a new model for painting: the flat and immaterial horizon of the screen replaces a three-dimensional reality with which the language of painting has always been challenged. The physical depth created by Renaissance masters vanishes, replaced by transitory two-dimensional images, with windows opening onto each other, compressing the space into close-range viewing on screen – the precariousness of a world reduced to a digital existence.

 In 1999 Flavio de Marco began painting series of black and gray software screens, a geometric skeleton of empty frames on canvas, something to look at rather than use, a landscape of the 21st-century. Over the years, images began to appear inside De Marco’s computer screens, inspired by ads and touristic representations: “fast-landscapes”, an oversimplified vision of our planet that can be reached through a simple mouse click. These schematic images meet the legacy of art history, which arises from the variation in techniques and motives used by De Marco, a patchwork of artistic references evoking a kind of “photoshop for painters”. His works also have either a colored vertical bar – the error marks of a printing machine – or a gray stripe at the top of the frame, the command bar of a computer. A reminder of our projective and disembodied experience of the world.