CON-TEMPORARY Art Observatorium and Jizaino present

David Detrich
System of Simulacra

Solo exhibition

► Introductory texts
► Exhibited artworks and photo gallery
► Catalogue
► Directions

David Detrich - System of Simulacra
25 May - 14 June 2022
CON-TEMPORARY Art Observatorium
Corso Buenos Aires 42 11
Lavagna, Italy

Download the invitation card

Introductory texts


CTAO had the pleasure to exhibit in the past the artistic research of David Detrich, with the chance to deepen its quality and message, of which we saw since the beginning the importance. In his artworks we identified a great social relevance for the contemporaneity and for the scenarios projectable toward the future, so the need to propose a wider treatise of his developments matured, planning this solo exhibition, first in Italy.

Beyond the social aspects, Detrich’s artworks face the same human question also from an ethic and philosophic point of view, putting the beholder in front of the conflict between Being and Having, in the difficult coexistence of materialism and spirituality, creating artworks that weave this surreal hybridisation in the mind and that manifest as dual chimeras.

Continues on the catalogue...

System of Simulacra

The expression of David Detrich starts a debate on the significance that an object, in its materiality or its image, recalls in the memory of the beholder, and when we look at one of his artworks we surely recognise in him the figure of the critical artist, as he takes advantage of the connections, even unconscious, to generate new meanings, deviations from the common sense and the stereotype. To him any representation is never realist, but surrealist and conceptual. The object, the product from the consumerist system, opportunely reduced, decontextualised and finally repurposed, reveals its own essence of mere simulacrum, not devotional but rather altered into indistinct features, thus ineffectual, with the aim of spoiling the credibility of the same system, as it is a system based on simulacra.
As if they were warning totems, Detrich’s artworks reveal the great deception of the image, as already denounced by Magritte but notwithstanding that today it has evolved into a pervasive mass addiction.

But if the simulacrum is a material or visual representation of something, to the extent that we should consider all the art a production of simulacra, the situation is different for the meaning of simulacrum that we can attribute to social life, which is that of picture representing the status symbol and the status quo: it is the object of possession, the trophy and the ransom-reward, the good needed to define and flaunt one’s own social level or to give a meaning to the alienation deriving from the self-immolation on the altar of productivity, a compensation to one’s own sacrifice.

Detrich produces artworks that deal with the pseudo-reality, the socio-economic fable narrated by the materialist system of consumerism, which avails itself of the status symbol to induce an unhappiness that could be soothed only by the induced needs. The artworks with a factitious appearance evoke the frail structure of marketing, which is the foundation for the modern collective imagery and a conformist and uniform existential model, where the individual has just a role as actor reading an already written part.

Continues on the catalogue...

Exhibited artworks and photo gallery


Click here to ask for the catalogue on paper.

Catalogue of David Detrich - System of Simulacra - Solo exhibition, Italian | English, 56 pages A4 (21 × 29.7 cm)


The CON-TEMPORARY Art Observatorium exhibition room is located in the centre of Lavagna, in the midst of Riviera Ligure di Levante, northern Italy. The location is well serviced, a few steps from bus and railway stations, the touristic jetty, free 2h parking and near the highway exit. Access for impaired people and lift.

By foot, by train or bus: exiting the train station of Lavagna towards the city side, go to the left going along the main street until the Poste Italiane post office, here turn right toward Via Cristoforo Colombo street, as soon as you arrive at the roundabout of Piazza Cordeviola square turn left in Corso Buenos Aires boulevard. The building n. 42 is at the start of the boulevard.
Bus stop "Lavagna - Cordeviola/Edicola" linee 704, 705, 731, 798, 846 and 934.

By boat: on the maritime line fares Portofino / Lavagna / Cinque Terre disembark at the touristic harbour of Lavagna. Exiting the harbour, turn left in Via dei Devoto street and go beyond the railway by the underpass that takes you to the Poste Italiane post office, then follow the directions above.

By car: toll road A12 E80 Genova-Livorno, exit at Lavagna, go toward the town centre. At the roundabout of Piazza Cordeviola turn right in Corso Buenos Aires and stop at the start of the boulevard, number 42 .

By airplane: the nearest airport is the Cristoforo Colombo in Genoa, the shuttle bus VOLABUS will take you to the train station of Genova Brignole, from there you can reach Lavagna in 40-60 minutes.