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María Carolina Baulo


With the "multiplication of planes" as a guide, the plastic artist and architect by training, Adriana Napoleone, defines the backbone of all her work. And it is from that axis, that guideline that everything goes through in each of her searches, series and tours where she chooses to sustain an aesthetic and a way of creating, building and thinking spaces that pivot between the three-dimensional and the plane.

Napoleone's work starts from the economy of resources and appeals to that discipline from the beginning to the completion of the pieces: starting from the planimetry of the paper as a support, she uses that compositional place to "lay out" what she is going to paint or fold. Her Paper Architectures, a name that could account for all her production to date, form a conglomerate of folds, constructions, interrelationships of lines that create a solid weft to support a structure that is structurally fragile but conceptually and visually solid. It is from the design in the plane where the artist projects the volume, her work goes back and forth between those two scenarios typical of a point of view that reads the lines in perspective, that raises them and refutes them. And it is in those actions where the multiplication of planes appears as the guiding axis of her work because it allows that space to be built from which she conceives the work.

Like any self-respecting architect, Adriana Napoleone knows how to sketch, design, draw complex structures thinking about that "facade" that is seen but never neglecting everything that is behind that gives sustenance and foundation to that visible face. A long list of recognized artists in the History of Art knew how to develop the benefits of this exercise of thinking about the three-dimensional, laying the foundations above all else, even when they were not seen in the final result. So they started from the drawing of the bones, going through muscles and organs to reach the dermis because all the meaning and solidity of the result depends on the foundations. Then the work becomes a kind of model that can remain on paper as a work per se where the artist reveals one of its sides, some of its profiles, a point of view and passes to the canvas. But many other times it operates as a construction that becomes increasingly complex when it is intervened with elements other than painting, such as cardboard or wood.

Adriana Napoleone's work owes a lot to architecture, which for me is the territory of artistsand creatives by definition. It does not surprise me at all that an architect, over time, feels seduced to venture into the plastic arts because every project starts from the plane and then emerges to the surface as an autonomous volume. In her works, the outlined profiles often play like a polyptych from which the different facets of the same structure conceived by the artist can be appreciated; a kind of rotation of the pieces that allows you to present all the faces displayed in the same instance. And she does this, as we anticipated, from the work on the paper, either by drawing it or folding it and then choosing whether to paint it or “sculpt” it. Adriana tells me: "my aesthetic search fluctuates between the merely formal and the story or narration that at times is conducive to giving support to the morphological, generating its own imaginary." This implies that this oscillation and permanent feedback between the plane and the volume also occurs between the formality of the practical and technical work and the conceptualization of the contents of the work. I cannot venture even if one of these two forces will take the lead at some point and establish itself as dominant.

For now, her work develops in a fluid way, combining abstract geometric structures with colors that maintain visual harmony, entering and leaving the plane without asserting one instance over another. And Adriana adds that "this is how magic happens" and I understand that it is in that creative exchange between different materials, formal presentations or a volume that allows you to go through it, where what is thought and what is tried to be projected is almost a modern discourse of art where reflection on materiality itself and its structure, prevails. It is there, at that point of pendulum inflection between one and the other, where the magic happens.



Lic. María Carolina Baulo, May 2022



Rocky Cervini


Adriana is a visual architect; it couldn't be anything else. Passionate about organization, shape and relationships between parts, she is a creator of large, complex, labyrinthine geometric shelters, almost as whimsical as they are perfect, which she measures, calculates, calibrates and compares over and over again until she gives birth to her idea. cardinal. We could imagine these angular bodies of giant dimensions, housing entire civilizations, or as tiny as a walnut ship, but always serving the same containment function. What is inside of them? It is a mystery that invites you to observe them… Points to develop: The three dimensions as an axis: starting from blank paper (1 dimension), going to 3 dimensions (paper model) and then returning to one dimension (canvas) where the other two are contained as the final work. – Containment through structures, containing the organic through creative intervention, imposing order on the natural world from human rationality. ​ ​


Author: Rocky Cervini

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