“Aluminium bonds”


No man is an island, complete in himself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the whole. If even a sod were washed away from the sea, Europe would have a missing part, as if it lacked a promontory, as if a dwelling of your friends, or your own house, was missing. The death of any man diminishes me, because I am part of the mankind. So never ask who the bell rings for: it rings for you! (From “Meditation XVII”, in John Donne, Devotions for emergency occasions, 1624)


Aluminum is one of the few elements of the periodic table to be trivalent: each of its atoms uses three electrons to combine with other elements. The theme of the COMEL 2020 Award,
“Aluminum bonds”, underlines this characteristic: that is, the natural propensity of this metal to come into contact, join, connect and merge with another element. A capacity superior to the one of many other metals, which ensures that aluminum is never found alone and pure in nature and that indeed it lends itself to form a definitely large number of alloys. Trivalence therefore becomes a metaphor for openness, generosity, exchange and desire to bond.

A concept that is very close to the purposes for which the COMEL Award was born: the meeting occasion, the willing of growing together, the opportunity to create links.In this VIII edition, artists are asked to create works that recall the concept of “bond” both metaphorically and practically. The works eligible to participate will only be those in which aluminum is flanked by other materials, while remaining the predominant visible material.