Paola Angelini

curated by Arild H. Eriksen

26 September – 7 November 2014
inauguration Thursday 25 September 2014 at 7 pm


The exhibition consists of a series of works that the artist from the Marches region painted during a project involving a period of residence in Norway and in which the focus is on different interpretations of the landscape.

The solo exhibition of Paola Angelini at Galleria Massimodeluca is the result of the artist’s intense daily work between April and June 2014 while staying at the Nordic Artists' Centre Dale (NKD) in Sunnfjord, on the Norwegian fjords. During this period Angelini developed her pictorial art surrounded by the solitude of the northern forest and the results are now the main feature of the exhibition Regio (Latin word used to indicate in a general way a vast area on the surface of a planet). 

Both large and small canvases are being presented, in which all the subjects refer back to an old memory, to a time, which in painting puts the present and the past on the same plane. The exhibition is considering the landscape from two points of view: from nature, depicting real locations - “real in terms of a natural contemplation which excludes a commentary”- and from background of human representation, “of an archaeological nature which stems from olden times, populated by saints and heroes, and which entrusts its representability to landscape elements which intersect classic architecture with the views of contemporary towns and countryside”, according to the definition of Marco Goldin in Storia del Paesaggio (History of the Landscape).

The artist enjoyed a constant dialogue with Arild H. Eriksen, director of the residence and also the exhibition curator, which enabled her to make comparisons and to perceive the positive and negative sides of the relationship with her country of origin.

The Norwegian landscape, Angelini explains, “made me feel completely bewildered due to the total lack of sacredness associated with man, his rites and his religions. All I see here is peace and unexplored, long silence, I am seeing what I have never seen and my imagination does not know what to pin itself on. Everything I can’t manage to see is covered by green, a green I’ve never seen before”.

The period of residency ended with the painting Landskapet, which represents a central point in Angelini’s art and was accomplished entirely in the forest where the artist spent a week painting from nature; the painting embodies the stratifications and difficulties connected with the physical place of the wood itself. 

As Eriksen says, “the residency of Paola at NKD culminated in an impressive landscape painting, an interior forest we would call it in Norway. It is not simply the rewarding result of a number of weeks of intense work in an alien environment, with this painting the artist has touched on one of the dominating traditions of Norwegian art – landscape painting”.

Angelini has also made a large papier mâché sculpture for this exhibition, which was inspired by a period spent working closely with craftsmen in a long-established workshop in Nola, where the artist learned the relative technique traditionally used for the Festival of Lilies. 

The sculpture is a reference to a submerged and stratified sacredness, and the gleam of the chopped up paper recalls the light of the landscapes of the North. A religious-themed Baroque style object loses its holy function in this exhibition and becomes the ruin of a culture of belonging, fetish of a belief.

A text by Arild H. Eriksen is to be found in the catalogue as well as contributions by Antonio Grulli, Andrea Bruciati, Alice Ginaldi and Eva Comuzzi, with whom the artist corresponded constantly during the preparation of the project.