LUPO + GIGA present ColorZenith, the first solo show by Luca Napoli at Lupo - Lorenzelli Projects

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LUPO + GIGA present ColorZenith, the first solo show by Luca Napoli at Lupo - Lorenzelli Projects
Luca Napoli, Sheet, 2022, exposed silver-halide photographic paper.

MILAN.- Superglue yourself to a well known painting or swipe left or right to change the composition. Shift the angle of that well distributed cultural artefact. As if it is a touch screen, a temporary vision in- stead of a treasured moment frozen in time on canvas. The record of reality replaces reality and can be updated at any time, reality is mouldable far beyond the stroke of a brush.

The Wikipedia entry on your raison d’être just got rewritten. Why not view the entire world through the lens of Frida Kahlo or August Macke, any lamppost, street corner, building street scene, public life. Embracing the simulation while sober. The most ordinary moments, refuse, the mundane, ordinary, discarded ambitions made ornamental.

Captured as light in a dying medium. No longer reproducible, the epitome of networked, and digitally exaggerated light instilled in time through a system, which is no longer manufactured. A new reality captured in nostalgia. COLORZENITH takes its title from the name of the photo lab and printer on Via Clemente Prudenzio in Milan, where all the works in the exhibition were printed. Using a printing process which will be discontinued during the very runtime of this exhibition. The end of an era in the capturing of digital light, celebrated to its maximum, its apex, pinnacle, zenith.

Where Jon Rafman and Katherine Grosse meet, Napoli selects and sets the scene for an ornamental vision on our mediated screen based life. A hallucinatory exaggerated version of public life, where opinions are large and political spectra are over satu- rated. The lack of nuance becomes an ornament. After lockdowns changed public life, reality became embellished with sickness, war, and scarcity. An ornamental layer of saturation keeping us in a mediated state between urgency and being jaded. As consum- ers of networked technical services, we have become products.

We are good users, trained to explain to our elders what a PDF is and how to connect to Zoom. Enabling fast track colonisation of depiction, by way of likes, blue ticks and algorithms trained on us. A smoother user experience makes it easier to give up on priva- cy. The gallery furniture by NM3, custom made to see Napoli’s exaggerations functions in a similar way. We are assisted in how to see things in perfectly beautiful ways from the extreme comfort of ECCO leather’s FSDX memfoam.

We see a world that is painted completely, not having missed a spot. To make it easy, Napoli first made the entire world a painting, and afterwards selected where he would let us look.

He first created his world, then selected the work like a readymade. To look differently, see in another light. He chose it. He placed his object in a different context. While allowing anybody to see this changed, altered world on, Napoli makes his own images akin to tourist photographs, photographs of a world he created by developing a new lens to look at a composite of doc- umentation and filters.

Within the simplicity and abundance, the work feels inherently Italian, almost baroque in its traditional sense, grandiose with a few ingredients.“Some of the qualities most frequently associat- ed with the Baroque are grandeur, sensuous richness, drama, dynamism, movement, tension, emotional exuberance” (Ency- clopedia Britannica).

Life is life’s best analogy, and the world is already an okay metaphor for the world.

Any experienced narrative was described before, the painting was already painted.

All hearts have been broken, who cares about yours.

Napoli’s work is a fire hose applying an exaggerated saturation to the default. In this series of works he literally applies it to any angle you can take, any possible vantage point in which we can practise looking at the world through the corporate simulacrum we use to imagine what being there would be like. A painting of every crevice and corner. The default being the Google street view that so many people know. Where a Google car passed down the street while you were not there, and documented life as seen through the eyes of an anonymous passerby with automated authorship, a corporate ghost. While making this work, Napoli was in the back seat of this car.

The entire world is painted, depicted, documented, we navigate an anticipated vision. Documentation was already way ahead of you. Pinch tap and drag your tired eyes through the world, through roads where people went before. A world where photography appropriates shadows, but Napoli chose to paint.

He created a lens to view everything as if it is his painting.

The particularity of selecting which viewpoint creates the com- modity, the object, the transaction, to be interpreted as valuable or discarded without realisation of its significance. Our eyes make the ornament, and Napoli spreads a layer of it EVERYWHERE.

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