Refracted Bodies is the distillation of Zamagni’s latest artistic endeavours, combining established artistic media alongside XR (Mixed Reality) experiences. Realms composed of physical and non-physical elements bid visitors occupy and consider their role within the intricate technosphere that constitutes the contemporary age. Sculptures and found objects dispense connections between land and society, and consider the preservation of ancient knowledge and beliefs.
A laser-engraved print on cracked industrial plaster – repurposed from a Hackney demolition site – depicts a compound of the most powerful and transformative natural plants in the biosphere. These images are provided by the Royal Botanic Gardens online archives.
Existing as a physical object and a symbol of the spiritual importance of the land, Supercluster (2023) emits crystalline, viridescent light. The object's outer ring is thrice layered in laser-cut frosted material with custom engravings, water jet cut mild steel, and porcelain, the inner ring is metal and both are furnished with latex sheets. At the centre is a crystal, and two contiguous lasers which meet in the stone and deliver a luminous burst.
The site specific VR installation - Transposition (2023) - is defined physically by two branches covered with 3D-printed lichen-like structures and lasers. A portal connects two distinct virtual realities; a pristine cave, 3D mapped from the artist’s visits to the Lake District and displayed with a uniquely constructed spatialised soundscape, and a mine. From the tangible objects scattered about the space, to the painstakingly constructed spectral landscapes, the practice of gathering and assembling is explicit.
Here, Zamagni juxtaposes relics of hyper-industrialisation and the preservationist outlook of indigenous culture, where ecological, cosmological, and spiritual understanding, paved the way for a symbiotic relationship with nature. A critique of contemporary extractionism, Refracted Bodies considers the eradication, disrespect, and destruction of Indigenous communities, exacerbated by capitalist forces.
Project collaborators include John Lucy, Wouter Weynants, Andrea Sartini with assistance from Guglielmo Baracchini, Luke Griffiths, Daisy Smith, David Li. Special thanks to Andre Baumecker, Alessandra Gobbi, Hayden Martin and Eleanor Greenleaf.