Internationally acclaimed artist and photographer Raphael Mazzucco proudly unveils his latest exhibition titled Grass Roots at Castle Fine Art, Birmingham.

The Canadian designer, who has homes in Lebanon and Connecticut, is releasing material produced during the COVID-19 lockdown, and the art addresses the theme of the African continent and the urgent need for conservation.

Drawing inspiration from his travels on the mother continent, acclaimed multimedia designer Raphael Mazzucco has launched his first major exhibition in the UK since 2019.

Free Spirit by Raphaël Mazzucco

The exhibition is curated in conjunction with leading art retailer Castle Fine Art, which has a gallery in The Mailbox and the International Convention Centre.

Mazzucco’s brand new collection titled Grass Roots is the result of two immersive years in his Connecticut studio reusing materials from his vast exploration of Africa.

Inspired by his travels, this striking new series includes 40 original, hand-embellished works of art adorned with handwritten quotes and iconography, making a powerful plea for conservation.

Detail of Raphael Mazzucco’s Walk of Life

The series reflects and celebrates Mazzucco’s love and respect for the continent, capturing grasslands, native wildlife and one of the ten natural wonders of the world, the Maasai Mara.

The material highlights African wildlife like elephants, lions and giraffes that are under constant threat from poachers and climate change.

Mazzucco also reveals the danger posed to the indigenous peoples of Africa as crops fail and tribes struggle with starvation and severe shortages of clean water.

Kuhiji by Raphael Mazzucco

Commenting on her brand new collection, Mazzucco said, “Working on this new series was like going through my old journals. All these particular images have great meaning and memory for me.

“My previous collection was photographed and created in the spring before the pandemic, focusing on the beauty, warmth and vibrant colors of nature.

“This collection was created over the winter months during COVID-19, which gave me time to dig deep into my archives and rediscover all of these special pieces.

“It’s a series that I’ve always wanted to do.”

Behind Those Eyes by Raphael Mazzucco

In order to effectively capture the sepia palette of the Maasai Mara in his works, Mazzucco added pigments and spices – local to the regions – he visited in his compositions.

Each coat of paint applied to his photography is the product of total spontaneity, making his style as organic as the materials he uses.

By layering paint, photography and handwritten text, Raphael takes viewers on a documentary-style journey through geographical and emotional terrains.

Zebras by Raphael Mazzucco

Ian Weatherby-Blythe, Group Managing Director at Castle Fine Art, said: “We are delighted to be working with Raphael on his impressive latest collection.

“Grass Roots is nothing short of exceptional; it awakens the senses and allows the viewer to travel alongside Raphaël on his travels.

“These quirky pieces capture the beauty of the natural world in Raphael’s signature style and are the perfect addition to any collection.”

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