Working on colour, on its simplicity and its
original foundation of the visible, meaning
the whole complex of feelings and emotions, but
the habit and language of any identity as well, today means
entering pacts in an indefinable sequence,
that is in itself infinite, an experimentation, as an erratic
trip to the hereafter without saying of whom or what,
in a continuous trial of expressiveness, as
an ontology of being, inasmuch as it is a native force of apparition,
that gives diversity an anthropological value. Thus, an emotional
quid of great impact and a consequential analytical rationality
is demonstrated, that is able to search and find where one did not
think to search and even less to find anything. The choice
of a name is significant for he unity of an intent,
even when it refers to a nebula, for which
reason Colors is a place of utopia and a concrete labour,
starting from an emotional and rational binary logic,
which are integrated with each other in a unicum, that is such
inasmuch as it is also a great otherness and bustle and,
hence, singularity and plurality together. It also means
working on drawing, as dot or line of spatiality, an accident that
in the end jeopardizes the uniformity of the spot, although it may
be more or less intense, depending on the love or passion
with which it is faced and within which visual illusions dwell,
the ghosts of impossible apparitions that govern
the impact with nothingness and everything, for which reason
one sees things that are not to be seen because they are not there
or, better, not there in the ordinary form of common sense.
Consequently, drawing determines the wound, the breaking point
that determines and orientates, even though at the end everything
is flowing, and one feels illusion spreading, because there is no
code, there is nothing else than a thing in itself, yet a providential
one. It is on drawing that the mark finds itself and
its possibility to become an alphabet of something
inedited, sometime placid and tranquillizing, sometime
stormy of worry, because within it moments of consciousness
of doing come up, as automatism and oneirism, and
customs, modes and styles of formal manifestations are
reflected, whose design becomes a contour and formal limitation,
or a rupture of any hesitating quaestio, in a brilliant gestural mode.
In any case, within it there is the prologue of
any pictorialness and any imaginary,
with all what modernity wanted to express.
Following the architectural etymologies of thought,
both extolling and painful, as forerunners of any
creative/inventive activity, the poetical datum is put next
to the narrative datum, in order to find its dimension
within the virtual space, the one that exists within thought
and ideas, that tries to get into contact with the external,
real, consistent one, inhabited by thousands of poetic,
hermetic fugues and dissonances. Summing up, it is
a nice metaphor of the landscape of the life of thought,
breath, soul, but also touch, sight, exclamation. Consequently,
it comprises also the persecution of interior chimeras that
wake up again and again, following an irrepressible impulse
to cosmogony, to an elevation of desire to
the highest peaks of illusions, the only unattainable destinations
of happiness, that cling to musicality, poeticalness, in order
not to dissolve dreams. Al this means that the adventure of colours
is complex, as thought and its mixture of sensations,
emotions, feelings are, like the quantity of its combinations,
almost inexhaustible as to their dominants, variants,
nuances, formalizing associations, with the possibility to realize
at any moment an unforeseeable, though foreseen, both as
a fruit of chance, in the gestural combination of the kaleidoscopic
minimal and blowing, and choice, because there is also
choice, decision, will - both artistic and compositive - of the
linguistic materials themselves. Within it mental and
psychological elaborations are materialized, automatisms
that characterize the forms of vision and hence, of the
whole imaginary, which would otherwise be flat, grey
and monotone, whereas with it all becomes talking,
immediate, in joy and dismay, little by little inventing
the artistic seals of identity. It is a restless elusive identity
that relies on a making convention of glazing, of dressing
of colour on a sharp epigrammatic of discomfort
wothin the world, causing a melancholic absence,
also when it inspires a subversive attitude of the genius, which
veils knowledge and becomes a subtle interpreter of
an idea of light that is mythologized and delighted
in its own qualities. In fact, apart from qualities,
such alchemic perceptions of lightness, as a
perennial philosophy of thought (according to Warburg,
but also Wittgenstein) spreading within the still uncovered area
of space, connecting it like in a great map of
interior energy underlying human abysses of all of us
and that lets the sense of synthesis emerge, that any work
claims, by working out artistically its own eccentricity, although
in a disorderly way, following the challenges of the moment,
but always along new pathways, so that it surprises itself
as unknown to itself, as a self-reflection in enigma.
It is a distract insemination, made by the fecundation of a light
that gathers itself inside the sill of each work. This fecundation
is a disorderly energy of human venture that creates
new worlds that are a sum of pleasure and pain, as it happens
for any conception that later on leads to a new entity,
new assertions of fantasy, which is a nomad by its nature and
never stops at the same place, although sometimes it takes
some fragments from there and proposes them anew. But these
are only moments of stay along the great anabasis that
starts at dawn and goes on until dusk, passing through
uproars and whirling, like memories, to finally move again.
These paintings look like continuous disguises or screens,
but also crossings that must be relentless inasmuch as
they are points of departure and arrival of a personal dialectics
of construction and deconstruction, to give answers to
oneself, rather than to others, in a lesson that is humoral
and conceptual at the same time, based as it is on a disease
of living that the artist, by painting, not only tries to mitigate,
but also to launch into the surrounding world as
a loving provocation, as a virtue according to Nietzsche
in his Zarathustra, open to the wind of folly, because
without being touched by it, it is not possible to associate
one’s life to that of painting. This can be winning sometimes
and many times irresistible and “losing”. Yet this does not
matter much, what does matter is to keep faith to
one’s choice, even when some sleepiness and passiveness
come down. If at first it seems to look at a great repetition,
at a second sight one perceives the posters of a devotional
itinerarium, which is variable, by successive catastrophes
and revelations, depositing paragraphs and chapters of
a transformation that is never revolutionary, evident, but
always secretly in love. Consequently, ruptures as well as
color thinning belong to one of the numerous pathways
followed by abstract painting, not as a thought without a content,
but as a thought whose content is its profound feeling,
the sense of self that is at the basis of everything, in the
labyrinth of doubt, crisis, “theatre”. By scanning the forms
of time, the accumulations of a cryptic Saturnalian study,
one perceives the remnants of silent conversation in the shape
of visual monologues where it is never possible
to take with full eyes and hands, but only to be discrete
and be able to watch what is not immediately perceptible,
but frees itself by intermittence: aristocratic harmonies
of a minimalism that never hints at a void, at nothingness,
but always maintains a quid of breakthrough allowing for
difference, which attracts the gaze and keeps it, seizes it.
Up to now, there is a pictorial storehouse always rich of turns
and perspectives as a great praise of colour and light,
bound to reproduce itself by the interior force that
characterizes it, by crossing it totally, in many crosswise ways
corresponding to fast moves on a chessboard without squares,
with unforeseeable slides, from one end to the other,
according to the whim of the moment. Every work is born out
of the distress of the white canvas that cannot remain as it is,
that is why it is taken to the atelier like a love room, in order
to lose its virginity and acquire a matronly role. Within
the personal history of taste and usual choices, the artist,
Salvatore Pupillo, is “compelled” to perform, as if he would obey
a super-ego that does not like at all to remove its vital ganglia,
by freeing them from the Saturnalian shadows that fly
around him and often make him escape - feigning to do
something else, to be able to do something else
but then they attract him with the charms typical
for Homeric sirens, and dissolution is always there, in wait,
but “risks” to never prevail, because there is so much to take
within this rich field of colour and light. Thus, it never seems
to be the same scene but always a different one,
because the secret weapon used by the Leonardesk
Paul Klee is brought into action, by affirming that it is
something mental and every time stages the invisible hat will.

Francesco Gallo Mazzeo

The Interior Image

It seems that Salvatore Pupillo paints, as though on his own skin, something like an impermanent tatoo sensibilizing his being in contact with the word. The canvas is a provisional diaphram with some cosmic sens and particular feeling, on which marks are laid and made visible by minimal, extremely sensitive apparitions.

Patrizia Ferri

Gli interessi sono quelli classici: il colore,la luce, la materia. Le sue grandi e piccole opere sono monocrome, attraversate da eventi formali rapidi, istantanei, fotografici. Segno, colore, gesto, scritturalità, questi nella somma, i caratteri contraddistintivi, e più immediatamente evidenti, che emergono dalle composizioni pittoriche di Pupillo. Un progetto aniconico, il suo, nel quale la natura specifica di tale tipologia linguistica, apertamente innestata nel flusso, tradizione dell'astrattismo, risulta arricchita ed esaltata da procedimenti oscillatori, sedimentativi.

Mario de Candia

Apologia della Pittura - Pupillo, pittore romano per adozione siciliano per origine... " Noi siamo un dialogo" direbbe Heidegger, non è facile redimere l'origine. L'origine di chi e da dove. Pupillo, dipinge e fa un'apologia della superficie. A posteriori appaiono i segnali, piume, assi rotanti che avviano il volo, tentativi del pittore - poetizzare lo spazio - alla ricerca dell'origine. Salto qualitativo, fino ad accumulazioni e cadute nella ridondanza. Il pittore attraversa un mondo carico di ostacoli, vuole scoprire gli astri. Illuminazioni, un lampo, un'esplosione di luce. La superficie si stabilizza, (riassume) il suo volo...

Carlos Espartaco

Presentazione della esposizione tenutasi alla Galleria   Associazione Culturale Marcello Rumma tenutasi  nel Novembre 1999
Courtesy Associazione Culturale Marcello Rumma -Roma


Che bel titolo!  Lo leggo e rileggo compiaciuto, isolato nel foglio ancora tutto bianco. Un buon viatico alle brevi note che mi accingo a scrivere per un amico, il pittore Pupillo. Il titolo è bello, ma non è mio. L'ho preso in prestito da una dedica di Vittorio Rubiu, autore di un libro su Pascali.
Il giorno della presentazione del volume, il critico, appreso il suo nome, fulmineamente in mia presenza gliene dedicava una copia: "Pupillo, di chi?". Ognuno, si sa, ha i suoi padri, i suoi maestri ideali. Pupillo, in virtù del nome che porta, mi incoraggia ancor più a risalire alle sue fonti. Ebbene, dirò subito che il suo lavoro si riallaccia alla corrente informale degli anni quaranta e cinquanta. Non c'è pop art che tenga, nuova figurazione, post surrealismo, installazione o performance, anacronismo o arte povera, o quant'altri ismi o tendenze del novecento, che seduca Pupillo quanto l'informale.
Ed io, che quella stagione ho vissuto, si può dire, da adolescente, un po' mi compiaccio e un po' mi sorprendo che siano Fautrier e Wols i numi tutelari di un pittore quarantenne come Pupillo. Eppure è cosi. Per la materia e il segno sono ancora loro i fari. In verità il nome di un altro pittore informale mi viene in mente davanti ai quadri di Pupillo. E Vasco Bendini, che negli anni '50 fu capace, per l'appunto, d'una originale sintesi tra Fautrier e Wols. Bendini, che rimane per me abbastanza misconosciuto, ha dipinto tra il '57 e il '59 dei quadri unici nel panorama italiano: spirituali, pulviscolari, veri soffi dell'anima. Soltanto ottanta o cento quadri in tutto, ma toccati dalla grazia. Quegli esiti Bendini, quelle vette non le avrebbe più raggiunte.
Fortunatamente Pupillo può contare su altri strumenti rispetto ad allora. Sa cos'è l'arte concettuale. Sa che non è consigliabile oggi barricarsi nel fortino della pittura rifiutando sortite e contaminazioni. Ed ecco Pupillo "rischiare", rinunciare a volte a un fondo troppo elaborato e scegliersi una tela bella e pronta, preparata ad acrilico.
Tutto ciò equipara il fondo a uno schermo, ad uno spazio virtuale, neutro, dove far calare come un'accetta l'istintività dei gesto pittorico. E in effetti su tale supporto l'immagine sembra stagliarsi più nitida di quando interagisce con un fondo lavorato. A ben pensare, se c'è un pittore a Roma che Pupillo dovrebbe amare, questi è Gianni Dessi. All'altezza dell'occhio Dessi colloca sulla tela, sempre più o meno nello stesso punto, un'esca per l'occhio, una piccola epifania visuale.
Si tratta di solchi, di segni, di grumi di materia, di piccoli oggetti incollati. Isolatamente, o tutti insieme in un delizioso "pasticcetto", essi danno luogo ad un centro, a un bersaglio dove s'appunta inevitabilmente lo sguardo. Questo è anche lo schema ambizioso di Pupillo. Pure lui confeziona il suo "pasticcetto" di segno e materia, si gioca la sua bella carta epifanica. E quando il gioco gli riesce, quando abbina freschezza a invenzione, dai suoi quadri si leva accattivante come il richiamo di una sirena. Non è più il graffio sul muro, la poetica esistenziale del dopoguerra. E tuttavia intuiamo in quel richiamo ammiccante il cammino impervio dell'uomo e dell'artista. Il suo incespicare, abbattersi, rialzarsi. Il suo cantare trepidante e intrepido la vita.

Fabio Sargentini