Andrea Bolognino’s observatory at Acappella ...

Andrea Bolognino’s observatory at Acappella gallery in Naples

There is a time when traveling, moving, is the only way to find new inspiration. To feel inspired by something, to create something new by looking at what has been there. And what is art if not the emigration of a thought? The sign observation, the gestural gaze, the vision of a color. Sensibility and perception of the world, in which painting is a scenic language. Andrea Bolognino – a Neapolitan artist born in 1991- embodies this example. Having moved to Germany, he is a painter who makes his gesture an alchemical act. There is no transformation of objects into gold, but rather a transformation of human thought into its seemingly artificial counterpart.

Andrea Bolognino, “Osservatorio”, exhibition view, 2024, Galleria Acappella, courtesy di galleria e d’artista, © Danilo Donzelli Photography

The in-between state is the artist’s main investigation: hybridizing, highlighting the relationship between artistic representation and external knowledge. And again, relating imagination and perception, reality and fiction, utopia and concreteness. The knowledge from which Bolognino draws his research is literary, at times philosophical, in which reflection on post-human aspects (driven by technology in the first place) arrive to an imaginary made of real and virtual overlapping. The result is a hybridization of languages in which the pictorial stroke – in which drawing is the main expressive medium – abjures unspeakable truths, a parautopian consciousness that rejects the trap of a deceptive beauty produced by contemporary virtuality. Andrea Bolognino’s art gives life to encounters between the figurative and the abstract, generating a disruptive force to cross the limits of the known and overcome the narrow possibilities of physical reality. So his painting does not choose to take sides, but to stand in the middle, to give both visions, to bask and be intimidated at the same time. The reiteration of a gesture makes different planes of painting build an aesthetic almanac that guides the viewer to reflect, involve, empathize.Through the use of various elements such as graphite, charcoal, oils and watercolors, the artist makes the natural element sprout on different media as a contemplative and immortal horizon, in which the human figure is configured as a futuristic being of the world.

Andrea Bolognino, “La città è una macchina inutile”, 2023-2024, acrylic, plaster, oil, transfer print, pastels on canvas, 180 x 148 cm, Galleria Acappella, courtesy di galleria e d’artista, © Danilo Donzelli Photography

Eager to pursue that expressive German painting so dear to his thinking, Bolognino soaked in it before coming back to Naples for his second solo exhibition at Galleria Acappella. Osservatorio is the title that brings together his latest production. A body of works as energetic as they are chromatic. An ordered and ordinary chaos runs through the works on display, children of reflections and connections between past and present, between distant cultures, between self and other. These latest paintings were also conceived because of artificial intelligence, not intended as a substitute for his hands, but as a means of comparison. The artist suggested phrases, personal or borrowed, images, drawings, to the “sentient” machine in order to obtain and see a different result, an investigation on suggestion and reflection. Numbers and synapses.

Andrea Bolognino, “Osservatorio”, exhibition view (“Anelli di crescita”, Charcoal, graphite, oil, pastels on paper on panel,149 x 90 cm / “Sezione sottile di granito”, Charcoal, graphite, oil, pastels on paper on panel, 149×89 cm), 2024, Galleria Acappella, courtesy di galleria e d’artista, © Danilo Donzelli Photography

The natural element (both in color and depiction) is well visible in more minute works such as Cristalli di rame nativo; as at the same time the ancestral human (or perhaps better said humanoid) figure is the protagonist in works such as Wunsch, ein Vogel zu werden. But it is in La città è una macchina inutile that Andrea Bolognino shows the aesthetic whole of his current research. The mixed-media canvas, the largest exhibited in the gallery, contains all the individual graphic, gestural, intuitive, chaotic and ordered elements that describe a transitive, engaging everydayness, in which the material brings out the here and now. One senses a sign as fearful as it is decisive, a kind of fear of simplicity. There is an engaging feeling in the Neapolitan artist’s painting. Aesthetic observatory in which each element stands out against a contemplative, circular landscape. Move and discover, like a chaotic sign on the canvas.


Andrea Bolognino. Osservatorio
09/03 – 30/04 2024
Vico S. M. A Cappella Vecchia 8/A, Napoli


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