Meticulously observed spaces assimilated into routine and then isolated in perspective: a corner by the door, a squaretiled floor by a wall, columns, and large light-filled windows. No biographical annotation and no indulgence, no traces of daily life because what counts here is to cut space with colour and perspective while removing any connections or labels. This is where the originality of Julie Polidoro’s work lies: in getting down to the essential and while at the same time coming from an era that does not favour painting, its renewal allows her to achieve an ontological revolution. Once the contradiction between concept and subject, physicality and immateriality is overcome Julie Polidoro’s painting adopts the speed of mediums such ad photography and video, it achieves the braking down of the conceptual and the discipline of minimalism and is aware of the contemporary difficulty of expressing the ever increasingly complex reality of the present.

Once she graduated from the “Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts” in Paris, Julie would carefully study every day objects such as a plate, a glass, a shirt hung to dry on a radiator or sheets hung out of a window. She started to use a “view-finder”, ad a personal magnifying glass on the world made of a small square cardboard-cut-out frame. Through repeated and isolated searches, the superfluous was eliminated to reveal the essential until the perfect shot was achieved. A precise and calligraphic drawing, spread across a large area, with colours quietly making themselves heard in low greyish tones. Places today; ad objects in the past, are distanced to the point of abstract from their daily function: a roman studio carved out of a lecture hall with its slate benches and board and its ceiling and floor so technically and meticulously developed into a personalised chromatic geometry.

The process starts by choosing the integral material for the work’s theme, to be used in a locked interplay between shadow and light, opaqueness and shininess, void and density, it can be slate or, ad seen in the works made in Hong Kong, even Kraft paper hardly thicker than wrapping paper, first put onto canvass and then covered by a transparent plexiglass frame used to emphasise the subject. The plexiglass is also sometimes coloured blue or red and used as the base in such a way that the light filters through to reveal the shapes made in the tempera. Julie mostly uses powders diluted in glue to render them opaque that she extends with long brushes along the sketches that she develops day by day: to distinguish between the work already done and that still to do the area is marked with hardly visible brief yet precise phrases. Thus it is the choice of colour that defines the whole surface which has a tonal assonance more and more frequently interrupted by and acidic almost florescent pigment: an icy green or a neutral grey lit up by an electric yellow like a brush stroke of speed in an otherwise stagnant and distilled atmosphere.

It is the desire to move spaces, to escape from ones own “private obsessions” as seen in the most recent works which encompass a confused and static humanity: ironic stills come out of an alienated familiarity as in picture cartoons. Vaguely sketched characters now inhabit the inside, enclosed in their shells with no visible apertures to the outside world: some stare into space abandoned on the sitting room sofa, others eat together in strict silence at the table in front of the television.


Translated by Lucinda Agar