John James Pron: Fracking Rome


August 29 - September 30, 2012

First Friday: September 7, 5 - 9 pm

Artist Reception: Sunday, September 14, 5 - 8 pm

I am a practicing architect, a university professor who lectures on the history of architecture, and a person who loves to draw in black and white - in defiance of the increasing digitizing of worldwide communications media.

This is a collection of charcoal, ink and black prismacolor drawings inspired by a spring semester teaching in Rome, Italy.  My interest is not in literally representing existing iconic buildings and space, as so many people have done just that.  Rather, I seek to re-interpret original designs of many eras, re-imagining other spatial configurations, adding and subtracting details and elements, defying gravity, rewriting history - basically projecting my personal vision of a Rome that is perhaps more edgy, more ambiguous and more unsettling than simple reality.

Much as the process of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) releases unseen energies below the surface of the earth, I seek to manifest my perception of the potent inner life that has sustained Roman culture over the millennia, and that emerges in its architectural settings.