Julie Polidoro

march 12th – april 26th

Born in 1970 in Cannes, France. Lives and works between Paris and Rome.

“Dual” is a term that seems to suit Julie Polidoro quite well. A dual artistic agenda in France with the exhibition Mondes suspendus (Suspended Worlds) at Primo Piano and a collective exhibition at the Galerie Duchamp in Yvetot. Dual culture also, as Julie Polidoro shares her life among two cultural spheres, French and Italian. There is also a duality in her approach of pictorial practice, intertwining past and present. Her interest for science and mathematics drove her towards the domain of cartography and atlas. “Communication system using signs and visual devices,” the use of cartography questions its own nature and function in the era of drones and GPS which localize and position in real time space seen from above.

Julie Polidoro’s Suspended Worlds (Mondes suspendus) stress this dual reading, both intimate and political of present cartographies and aerial images. Her paintings are personal panoramas, alike lost or invented landscapes. This total immersion, put forward by the first installation with its three large suspended canvases, recreates a “landscape-world” directly impacting the exhibition room. Thanks to the overlapping spaces, both pictorial and architectural, the relationship between the landscape and its representation questions the notion of shifting, the necessity to decrypt the pictorial surface under a new angle, the canvas-object and its presence as a carpet/painting/setting and its gravity in the exhibition space. In order to apprehend these different perceptions of the Earth, the body of representations linked to the territories and the universe, is the distinctive feature of a personal quest for knowledge and expertise. Prime fantasy of seizing the world through the evolution of techniques, this comprehension and transformation of the world in image is primordial to Julie Polidoro’s pictorial practice so that the aesthetic, ornamental and political dimension can be questioned. Dual approach, oscillating from the science of images to the images of science, measuring, modelling the world, being at the source of this practice of cartography which “feeds stories, stimulates fancy and has definitely colonized the literary and artistic fantasy.” This “geographical fantasy” as defined by Teresa Castro in her publication La pensée cartographique des images, allows Julie Polidoro to apprehend these landscapes and temporalities in order to explore the pictorial medium.

Dual images, Julie Polidoro’s paintings bear the specificity of being freed from the frame, foreseeing the front and back of the canvas. Skin with no armature, the canvas with no frame is a way of going farther to contemplate and see differently the limit, the territory and the colour. For this fixed and mobile fragility, Julie Polidoro’s suspended worlds represent a reorganization of the territories through its non-hierarchic organization, through the simultaneity of events at the time of global economy. The feeling of change and instability is therefore strongly increased. Julie Polidoro stresses: “on the one hand, what happens in a very remote country, affects us closely, on the other hand it is obvious that the consequences of our actions be linked, that they have common consequences. This was always the case, only is it now perceptible by everyone. The world has become tiny.” As observed by Michel Foucault in Des espaces autres, the

understanding of contemporary space is not that simple: “We are in the epoch of simultaneity: we are in the epoch of juxtaposition, the epoch of the near and far, of the side-by-side, of the dispersed. We are at a moment, I believe, when our experience of the world is less that of a long life developing through time than that of a network that connects points and that intersects with its own skein.” The painting Partout il se passe quelque chose (Everywhere does something happen) states this multiplicity of point of views via the vibration of precise and blurred zones. By adding text on these pictorial cartographies, Julie Polidoro gives a new narrative and fictional dimension to the map that satellite images have deposed. She re-materializes spatially the exhaustive inventory of our knowledge of the world, now thanks to the virtuality of images and the abolition of distances. When one meanders among Julie Polidoro’s paintings, one feels once again a “material vastness“ as wonderfully described by Isidore Ducasse when talking about the ocean. The sky, the seas, the earth, the oxygen, seem to become confused. Through these direct sensations with instantaneous temporalities and with the matter, Julie Polidoro also grabs out the powers of colour, their presence and richness. Her quest for quality regarding the light in her paintings bears the golden byzantine colours. She refers to a spiritual and symbolic world. Either oscillating between control and freedom of the pictorial gesture or playing with suspension and gravity in her canvases, Julie Polidoro integrates the sculptural dimension to her painting, rendering the body all of its power. Around and inside these flying and floating paintings, it is all about finally finding the origins of this body which gave measure to the world.


Marianne Derrien