Eltjon Valle, born in Kucova, Albania, lives and works in Milan. In 2007, he graduated from the Brera Academy.

 

The fundamental source of energy that predominantly drives the global economy, yet paradoxically causes the most tension and conflict, is petroleum. This element of oil was the first medium in which Valle began his artistic journey from an early childhood. This raw element has been seen as a common denominator throughout his work, ranging from painting, installations, drawings, photography and video. 

 

Using art as an outlet, Valle projects the importance of battling against the overexploitation of land, along with the environmental impacts of pollution. Due to the political and ecological tension he witnessed unfold in his hometown, Kurcova, the central theme of his artwork has precise ecological connotations. As inspiration from the industrial effects during the Facist Regime, Valle has managed to transform an ‘on the spot’ exploration of a specific area of oilfields in Albania into pieces of work representing this environment. Starting out from the problems of restricted geological and geographical situations, the artist has given rise to multiple articulated visions that stimulate and reflect the importance of land throughout his work. 

 

Valle’s most representative work is his series Land Pieces, these distinctive works are created with the spreading of bituminous earth and rectangular pieces of ‘land’ immersed with petroleum from the Patos-Marinza Oil Field and showcased in conjunction with collections of ecologically endangered insects native to the geographical area. 

 

Through these works, Valle investigates the negative and positive effect of petroleum use in everyday life and its consequences and perception towards the modern landscape, influencing his artistic expression “everything is nature, even pollution”. This leads to his attempt to articulate that there is new beauty found in our time, even within contaminated territories.

 

Valle’s works have been presented in various exhibitions in both Italy and internationally, including the 54th Venice Biennale, the Micro Museum in New York, the National Center of Contemporary Art Moscow, the Villa Croce Museum of Contemporary Art in Genova.