With this project for the first time I’ve excluded colours from my work to focus on texture. I’ve explored the human body in an abstract way paying attention to the shapes and its sculptural potential. I wanted to depict is as an autonomous, bidimensional subject in contrast with the textures created to complement it. At the same time, I didn’t want to deprive it of its main element, its human identity so I decided to tell a story through shapes, textures and the sharp contrasts between smoothness of the body and roughness of the textures created, between black and white.
I took the pictures, I printed them and then I manipulated the pictures using paint, gesso, tissues, cotton, seeds, rice, sand, cling film and other objects to create texture. Then I photograph them again. I feel that by interacting with the print I can finally give a form to memories, dreams, feelings, all things that were there during the shooting, but you couldn’t see.
With the help of painting want to bring the photograph to a parallel reality where you can see feelings, dreams, memories, and where imagination is not opposed to reality but is integral part of our world and ourselves.
Mariangela Gallo UNITED KINGDOM
I spent most of my life shooting and painting. When I realized that I need both, and they don’t need to be separate works, it set me free.
Both the environment and every living being in it are constantly changing and their most significant traits are invisible to the eye. So, I asked myself how could I use photography to talk about something invisible?
Paint is a wonderful medium that opens you to infinite possibilities, but this versatility was a limit to me as I need that deep connection to the world around me that photography brings.
Photography is deeply linked to what we see, to the physical reality. Many scholars have discussed this topic at length, much better than I could ever do. It may be ‘the death of reality’, a ‘hyperreality’ or a ‘minute part of reality’, in any case its profound connection to the world that physically exists it’s undeniable.
But when we look at reality as something we experience through our senses, then multiple realities seem possible. By combining photography and painting I try to visualize these multiple realities: photography keeps me connected to the physical world, its rules and its discipline, while painting allows me to investigate perception and imagination by giving a form and a colour to things invisible only to the eye.
Photography helps me make sense to what I see, and painting helps me make sense to what I feel. For me both forms of art are essential and deeply connected one to the other. By combining them I feel I have found my own way of expression which allows imagination to be one of the defining elements of my realities.
I try to go beyond the representation of the physical world by embracing it and only by combining photography and painting I can express my personal reality how I see it: a mess of perceived shapes, shifting colours, textures, words, noise, silence, memories, regrets, hopes and dreams that change, evolve and transform like every living being and together with every living being.
Most things of value in our lives are invisible, and how can we define them as ‘real’ if we can not see them? And how can photography capture them? How often what you cannot see is infinitely more important then what you can see?
Photography, more than any other art, is based on what our eyes can see. Does this mean that there are things a photo cannot show?
Perhaps reality and imagination aren’t opposite concept, but imagination can help us seeing what reality hides behind the curtains of visual perception.
In the same way, when painting and photography work together, imagination can enter reality allowing us to finally see what before we could only feel, dream or imagine.
We are made of what we feel, of what we dream and imagine and maybe, sometimes we need to see the invisible to remind ourselves that what makes our lives worth living can’t be seen with the eyes.
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