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language, Cucchi’s paintings seem to be inspired
         by Scipione and Licini. The young artist’s use of    Mimmo Paladino’s work is surface painting. He
         color as smudge is influenced by Scipione, while the   is a proponent of surface as the only possible
         dynamic sense of space and the freedom to place      profundity. Thus all the most manifest data
         the figurative elements outside any naturalistic     of sensibility emerge visibly, making cultural
         reference are reminiscent of Licini. The space of    allusions and deep-seated inner references to the
         the painting or of the paper is not a background for   psychological condition. Painting becomes the place
         the image, but an emanation and a source of energy   where subtle, intangible motives are translated
         in itself. The concept is that of an art that adheres   into image. Signs from the abstract traditions,
         to things while at the same time setting in motion   influenced by the works of Kandinsky and Klee,
         a chain of mobile contacts and relationships to the   and more pompous signs in the figurative vein
         extent of transfiguring them into signs of another   intertwine into a single, organic motif.
         position, that of a “dynamic landing”, where high
         and low coincide.                                    The different moods of sensibility are thus
                                                              condensed and offer the possibility of free
         Nicola De Maria transcends the boundary between      association. The rarefication of each different
         the frame of the painting and the surrounding        mood, mental and material, finds its rightful place
         space; his visual field is the meeting place of many   on the surface. Paladino is never autobiographical,
         references. Painting is a tool to represent the      as everything becomes a pretext for painting. The
         progressive shifting of sensibility. Mental state and   geometry of the sign is immediately disrupted by
         psychological state fuse in an image that operates   the myriad figurative elements integrating gently
         by the fragmentation of visual data. The result is   into the rest of the composition, without leaps of
         a sort of interior architecture containing all the   chromatic tone.
         resonances and emotions embodied within the
         work.                                                The idea underpinning the image is that of the
                                                              fragment, of detail dilating and aggregating
         Each fragment lives a system of fluid relationships;   into another detail. The mood sustaining the
         there are no privileged or central points. De Maria   composition and the overall state of the painting
         replaces the notion of space with that of a field,   is fortified by references to languages derived
         a dynamic and network of relationships rich in       from the history of art. The surface of the picture
         potential whose visual constant is abstraction.      becomes the explicit threshold of the image,
         They share the same movement as music; there are     even when the latter seems to extend beyond
         no pauses, but an enveloping continuum of signs,     the confines of the frame and the wall. Signs are
         an environmental painting incessantly referring      ciphers that color and decorate the skin of the
         to a single rhythm, a single beat, that of pure      painting.

         The architecture of the work is flexible, each time                                 Achille Bonito Oliva,
         supporting the space within which it sets itself.      art critic and historian of contemporary art, one of
         Concreteness and rarefication alternate via the         the most important art critics and curators of the
         juxtaposition of painted wood elements marking                                  20th and 21st centuries.
         out the environment, and compact areas of color
         silently referring to indescribable states and metal
         conditions captured in the absolute.

         Through the alternate use of geometric and organic
         signs, the language used is both the manifestation
         and internalization of the artist’s sensitive
         state, and as an instrument of song and lyrical
         representation.                                      First published: © World of Art – Contemporary Art Magazine,  pg.47–47, Issue 6, vol 3, 2003

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