Francesco Pedraglio at P/////AKT

Artist: Francesco Pedraglio

Exhibition title: Scripting Anticlockwise

Venue: P/////AKT, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Date: May 7 – June 4, 2017

Photography: Charlott Markus, all images copyright and courtesy of the artist and P/////AKT, Amsterdam

an exchange project with Progetto Diogene, (Turin, IT)

FADE IN from BLACK (abruptly)

It´s not night yet, but it’s definitely not day anymore. The whole scene might be permeated with a faint yet detectable scent of wet paint. Outside: a light rain starts falling.

The voice-over:

imagine a series of abstract shapes. Picture each and every one of these shapes respectively containing a smaller and being contained by a larger one so that, when describing any of the aforementioned figures, you could already envisage the existence of both a predecessor and a successor. For instance… 

Moving anti-clockwise (slowly):

a first man – maybe the protagonist of this story – starts talking about the making of a film around the idea of portraiture… a film where the main character – a second man, which happens to be the first man’s alter ego – ends up not appearing in front of the camera at all, obliging the first man to imagine how a portrait of an absent person might look like. To do so, the first man asks for the help of a third person, a photographer and an old-time friend of his. The solution is simple: to shoot the portrait of, let’s say, X and to do so through Y (with Y being absent), well, they would shoot through the eyes of Z who, by knowing X, could better picture the absent Y. Or more simply…

Reflective pause… then:

a group of men and women is invited to play “being actors” just by leaning against a wall of a gallery space during a performance. By doing so – as in: by “playing actors” – they play being the audience of that very same show. Finally…

Sparse signs of approval: someone is nodding, most stand still… a man yawns loudly:

finally two equal and equally independent alphabets. One, the first one, is the alphabet of the teller. It could be noisy and complicated. But it could also be extremely entertaining, or moving. The second is the alphabet of the wanderer. It’s silent and schematic, borderline childish, but it has the same drive as the instinct to cover up your face when fearing a hit. Now picture the two alphabets coexisting one in front of the other, as if mirrored. They both tell stories: a man or a honeybee or a chacma baboon or a spider-monkey or a woman or a group of people walking or running or leaning or sitting or standing still, as if dead, etcetera…

The voice-over stop speaking and silence fills the room. Someone is singing in the distance.

FADE to BLACK (slowly).
Keep the scene going with the screen totally black (close your eyes!) Then:
And one last time: CUT

Francesco Pedraglio is interested in storytelling as a tool to decode intimate encounters with both mundane and historically complex situations. He looks at how the process of narrating and staging – oneself, or a situation – influences the relationship between teller and listener, making visible the fantasies and fictions that constitute our reality.

The starting point of Pedraglio’s practice – being performance, sculpture, installation, prints, films – is writing. A curious detail, an overheard rumour, a banal incident, anything could spark some telling. And it’s in the movement from the written text to the live action, from the live action to a staged installation or a film that the exploration of language, fiction and reality-making occurs.

Francesco Pedraglio was born in Como (IT) in 1981. He lives and works in Mexico City.

DRAWN ONWARD is an exchange project between P/////AKT in Amsterdam (NL) and Progetto Diogene in Turin (IT). Francesco Pedraglio and Paul Geelen (NL, lives and works in Amsterdam) are the artists that were invited for the project’s second edition: each of them will spend a two- month residency period followed by a solo exhibition. DRAWN ONWARD offers the artists the possibility to produce new work on location – conceived specifically for the given space and context – and to present it to an international audience.

Francesco Pedraglio, Scripting Anticlockwise, exhibition view at P/////AKT, 2017

Francesco Pedraglio, Scripting Anticlockwise, exhibition view at P/////AKT, 2017

Francesco Pedraglio, from left to right: Approximation (56 inches), 2017; Portrait of I (blue), 2017; Tool for hunting, 2017

Francesco Pedraglio, from left to right: Tool for writing, 2017; Scripting anticlockwise (detail), 2017; Script for 6 people becoming an audience, 2017

Francesco Pedraglio, Scripting anticlockwise (detail), 2017

Francesco Pedraglio, Scripting anticlockwise (detail), 2017

Francesco Pedraglio, Approximation (56 inches), 2017

Francesco Pedraglio, Tools (partial alphabet), 2017

Francesco Pedraglio, Map of the exhibition, 2017

Francesco Pedraglio, Scripting Anticlockwise, exhibition view at P/////AKT, 2017

Francesco Pedraglio, Scripting Anticlockwise, exhibition view at P/////AKT, 2017

Francesco Pedraglio, Portrait of I (blue), 2017