The drawing is a trace, an emotional imprint that originates, in the artist Nicolas Aiello, in the experience linked to our societal practices and in the urban stigmas. It takes days or even months to create his works assembled with word lines. This inevitably leads to a dialogue between paper and ink, a dialogue of meaning between two spellings: the drawing is only a heap of information gleaned here and there making it a tangible and manifest form. For us, Nicolas Aiello reveals himself on his delicate art of transcribing a very present memory.
Marlène Pegliasco: Could you present your career path?
Nicolas Aiello: I live and work in Paris. In 2003, I graduated from the Ecole Supérieure d’Art de Grenoble. At that time, I was only doing video and installations because drawing and the techniques around it, such as engraving, were seen as an aging medium, whereas nowadays there is a renewed interest. I started drawing after my studies. With my videos and installations, I intervened in the urban space and I proceeded in the same way with the drawing. I would take words on stairs and write them down on paper. Then, I pushed this scripture transcription using newspapers, magazines, based on information that came to me. And I transcribe everything in its entirety, such as the titles of articles, advertisements, notes… What interests me in this process is the daily report.
Marlène Pegliasco: Drawing has become the central medium of your artistic practice.
Nicolas Aiello: Absolutely. I am an artist who draws with a camera and films with a pencil. What interests me about drawing is the way I weave and embroider shapes with words. Moreover, the terms “text” and “fabric” have the same etymology. It is the idea of making fabrics with everyday words. Also, I had a workshop in Montreuil a few years after my graduation. It was on the ground floor and this conditioned my practice. Before, the urban space was my workshop from now on, here I am in the solitude of the workshop for the constitution of the drawing. In this workshop, I have introduced a protocol ritual that includes two distinct ways of working that feed on each other. On the one hand, the daily life transcribes into a given space; on the other hand, a more free work, like my series “Archipels”. Now I have a studio in the City of Paris, on the 8th and last floor, so I have necessarily established another relationship with the city, with light, with urban space and it results in a different relationship with my artistic practice.
Marlène Pegliasco: You like to explore unexpected things in drawing
Nicolas Aiello: I like working by solicitation, finding myself in a different context that will bring out a new creative approach. The”.rtf” series is a graphic language developed from photographs taken during walks. I keep the memory of these landscapes crossed then I integrate all the photos in a word processor and the result gives a singular writing, a writing marked by the trace left by these passages and the rhythms of the steps. I had the opportunity to expose these “texts” in the form of stickers in an installation “In Situ” that interacts with the architecture of the exhibition space and the space transcribed in this language. I unveil a real relationship to memory and the urban trace.
Marlène Pegliasco: Each drawing seems meticulous. How much time do you spend there?
Nicolas Aiello: A drawing represents about four to five months of work but for a format like Melancholia’s, time is an important factor in creation. There is a meditative relationship in my work, like an inner quest for drawing, and this relationship to time is part of a relationship to memory, to the trace left on paper and beyond writing and image.
Marlène Pegliasco: Drawing is an abstract writing.
Nicolas Aiello: For the series “Le Conspiracy des Pigeons”, I transcribed letters and documents of a post-war prisoner in their entirety: stamps, machine prints, accurately reproduced writing. What interests me is this relationship to the inmate’s language, the administrative language of the penitentiary. A transcription of memories and an intense memory imprint. As for my series “Archipels”, it is a kind of inner card made of small details like the gesture of the hand. These drawings are the result of the work of artist Pierrette Bloch, an inspiring figure. Lines follow one another, sometimes in discontinuities, sometimes with jumps, peaks, creating several strata. These abstract maps are a kind of metaphor for an inner search. The decomposition by points, by segments imposes a rhythm to the reading.
Marlène Pegliasco: What is your news?
Nicolas Aiello. : I am exhibiting in Lyon at Galerie Michel Descours until 16 February 2019. I present a series of prints made by the Lyon workshop URDLA. The five prints are taken from the magazines Le Figaro, l’Humanité, l’Equipe, le Monde and Libération. There are several writing styles: upside down, upside down, automatic, with each one having a transparency effect so that each print communicates with each other.
Portrait of a draftsman
If you were a drawing? Erased De Kooning Drawing by RauschenbergYour
favorite technique? The rotring mines 0.1 mmThe
most unusual support?
A smell of tomato sauce (from the Al Pomodoro room)
” Drawing is like…”?
Nicolas Aiello is currently exhibiting at the Michel Descours Gallery until February 16th