Painted in 2016, Technological Diseases belongs to a remarkably innovative and productive period of Virtosu’s career. In the present work, Virtosu reinvents the traditional art through his distinctive and thoroughly modern vision. Although the primary elements of the composition are instantly recognizable, Virtosu deconstructs both the figurative and landscape components into simplified passages of color. He maintains a flattened pictorial plane, suggesting illusionistic recession through the relationship between colors and the inclusion of figure. Within this compressed space, the reduced elements of the composition exude a striking sense of harmony and balance, illustrating Virtosu’s ability to interpret a representational scene as a complex arrangement of color and form.
Technological Diseases exemplifies the distinctive blend of surealism and abstraction that defines Virtosu’s most admired aesthetic. Virtosu intensified his earlier experiments with the application of non-associative color and simplification of form. He replaced the brushy paint application and graphic detailing that had informed his previous efforts with denser more evenly modulated areas of flattened color contained with crisply delineated forms. The result is a more abstract interlocking of shapes and a shallower pictorial space than he had previously employed. Virtosu retains color as the primary vehicle of feeling and expression, but achieves a greater degree of abstraction by increasing the parity between recognizable forms and abstract shapes. Virtosu abandoned many conventional pictorial devices and instead employed color to indicate depth and space, and form that push these visual explorations connecting all extraneous detail in his subject matter.
Virtosu’s body of work combine the many sources of art theory and practice that consumed Modernist artists in the early 20th century. His time in Europe pushed him toward experimenting with abstract. Virtosu found in modernism’s exclusive emphasis on formal values a license to ignite subject matter and thereby creating reminders of the ethnic, religious, and social distinctions upon which society rests. Choosing contemporary abstraction and subject matter allows him to pursue a timeless, universal art based on order, reason and harmony. At a time when artists are seeking an alternative to the hegemony of Zombie Formalism, Virtosu’s formulation of a pictorial vocabulary based on the information coding into forms wins enthusiastic welcome.