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CHROMED STEEL FACADE IN THE HISTORIC CENTER
"Hammering against buzzwords"
Stefanie and Dominik: "We explain Italy with irony".
by CLAUDIO LAUDANNA
LA NAZIONE, CRONACA CARRARA, Florence on March 8, 2018.

Review LA NAZIONE

Part tinkering workshop, part goblin den, part art gallery. The chrome-plated steel front is certainly the most unlikely place one would expect to cross the marble threshold of a basement in Via Santa Maria. And yet this is where two young Germans, Stefanie Krome and Dominik Stahlberg, along with their Chinese collaborator Yuanjun Gao, have set up shop to create their art, which is inspired by Maurizio Cattelan and Kermit the Frog, but also seems to have sprung straight from a novel by Bruce Sterling or William Gibson. Screen prints, T-shirts, plaster, resin or marble sculptures - everything that comes out of F.A.C. is intentionally exaggerated, explicit and provocative. "We founded Front in 2015," Stefanie and Dominik tell us, "and since then it has become synonymous with moving forward, traveling, and realizing our potential. Laughter, mockery, belittlement are the cornerstones of F.A.C.'s artistic work, which often uses decidedly disrespectful language to address commonplaces and buzzwords. Our satire is more Teutonic than Italian and very direct by nature," Stefanie and Dominik explain, "we believe that art should be like a hammer, that it should hurt and inspire discussion. Kermit the Frog from the Muppets once said, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but sometimes it is necessary to give the stupid or ignorant viewer a black eye." With our works we want to give an ironic reinterpretation of many Italian customs, seen through the eyes of two foreigners who have chosen this country as their adopted country." Another key word in F.A.C.'s works is the "pinkification" of reality, that is, always telling life in shocking pink tones. "We want to rob the little princesses, who are bored to death anyway, and take back our favorite color".

For Stefanie and Dominik, the decision to leave Germany and settle in Carrara was not only an artistic decision, but above all a life decision. We have been here for twelve years and feel like we are really from Carrara," say the two, "we live in Castelpoggio and feel at home just seeing the outline of the Sagro. We came here because Carrara is considered a Mecca for sculptors around the world, a place you have to visit at least once in your life. Over the years, the town has certainly become less international; there used to be more artists of many different nationalities, but we persevere. From our point of view, the old town is like a magnificent amusement park, much too quiet. Things are changing here: commerce and crafts are giving way to art workshops. We want to make our contribution and would like to organize some events soon in dialogue with the city to inform people about our work.

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