Paola Telesca

About the artist
Bio: Artistic approach Paola Telesca lives and works in Berlin. Her work includes drawing, photography and installation. She works thematically in cycles and series and her work is visual and conceptual. The artist has had the opportunity to live in both West- and East-Berlin. Four intense years of life in the German Democratic Republic left many impressions and from this experience Telesca has created a series of conceptual works dealing with East and West where she approaches and analyses aspects of the economy and its associated sense of time. The artist shows, among other artworks, a photographic approach, a zooming from soldiers and past newspapers through backyards and windows into a kitchen with patterned wallpapers. In another work headlight rings of Trabant cars become watches that describe a new concept of time and production. This series of works titled 'My GDR' is a testimony of changing time and history. The perception of time and movement, its optical awareness and the interaction of the viewer play an important role in Telesca’s installations. In a series of works titled 'Give me a Swing' and 'Rotunde - Room laboratory' the artist examines a general sequence of movement. She works with speed, changing tempos and opposite directions; she plays with the perception of time by fixating on rest points, creating equilibria and dissolution phenomena - a game with the visual perception and viewing habits of the audience. While „travelling through the perception of movement“ Telesca has also found an important inspiration in dance. The artist likes to work „live“ with dancers and tries to adapt her lines to the pace of their actual movement through reducing the number of strokes. Whilst drawing, Telesca concentrates on the movements of the dancer until she experiences herself the feeling of dancing. She describes it as a "stenographic recording of movement and space on the paper“. The resulting series of works bears the title: „I drew. Let her dance. Until the music picked me up“. An additional „stenography of the line“ is created in the series „Blind Drawing“. The Italian artist creates a whole work of art with just a few lines and dashes. The line is clear, decisive, spontaneous and self-confident. The definition of the stroke in its minimalistic form creates a narrative structure. In the series „Piercing the Mask“ Paola Telesca continues to explore body movements and focuses on the expressive language of the Japanese dance, Butoh - the dance of the soul. She explores the variety of „images“ displayed in this particular dance. The emotions, vibrations and tensions in the surrender to the dance offer the artist the possibility to catch, penetrate and interpret human fears; the darker and the „grey“, naked side to each human being. These expressions are partially serious, fearful, „grey“ and insecure, and yet they represent beauty to her. „They are a state that constantly changes, a flow in which nothing is constant, where two polarities seek a balance, a harmony. An internal struggle, a duality; the polarization of black and white, of emotions and feelings that search for a balance which comes and goes ... and yet it is never permanently there“. Contrasts here are strong, defined, hard. The surfaces dissolve themselves in fine lines and directions. They represent for the artist the memory; the traces of an ever-changing condition. This series is produced in collaboration with the Butoh dancer Makiko Tominaga and the saxophonist Marcel Schmid. She finds here an artistic universe that she explores with joy. These works invite to meditation and questioning. Telesca's photographs show a gradation scale ranging from black through all greyscale to white. Here again two polarities play a role: the yin and yang; the positive and the negative; in a game of mirroring and reversing. The interpolated figures affirm one another in expressing the polarity of things, the two sides of the coin creating new images and associations. Since 2017 Paola Telesca has been working on the expression and gestures of hands. Hands have no face and their language is universal. In their gestures she finds emotions like pain, need and greed. These observations led to the series "Need&Greed" - two series of photos and one film. Water and shadows are important elements in these very last works: water as an unexplored element of nature, in constant motion, and shadows of hands moved by the currents of water, swaying and rocking like seaweed. These souls have no graves. They rise like whispering voices from the depths of the sea aiming to create moments of reflection. They do not want to be forgotten. Telesca shows touching works of art that interlace music, dance, movement and perception searching for a universe of poetry and a new magic.