Critique by Anna Orlando

Bernadette Schiaffino Pisano’s left-handed stroke runs swiftly across the paper.

Her main path is that of the sign. A gestural expressiveness that is not violent, but neither is it controlled. The strokes, imaginative and curled, like a thousand trickles interweaving, are the liquefying of thought onto paper. In so doing, the image surfaces. Neither defined nor well-depicted, unrestrained, as no restrains can apply to an idea that crosses the mind.

Pisano reaches the artistic craft late, but with eagerness and confidence, through a path that begins with academic studies. Within a few years or little more, she is able to loosen the reins that rigor and craft had imposed on her, and she grasps the need to put aside the many variations of pictorial experimentation in a, more or less predictable and evident, tribute to the great masters of color. She understands, that is, that color can wander freely, within the drawn rivulets that her left hand donates to the paper.

Description and narration gradually leave make way to the bare graphic-pictorial gesture, where sign and color blend together spontaneously, with a result that is greatly impressive, both on a visual and on an emotional level. Little does it matter if the faces don’t look at us or at each other. The reciprocal sense of belonging is nonetheless efficiently given by the intertwining of the bodies. Shapeless outlines, colored or colorless, guardians of a soul, physical matter acquiring sense and meaning only for this purpose of acting as a protective shell for something much greater and immeasurable.

The impossibility of measuring translates into the open and fluid structure of the composition, where not even the large paper appears to be sufficient.

The sense of participating in what we perceive might be happening on the area of the paper, large enough for the breathing that is necessary to the mind, arises inside the viewer. The observer is carried not so much into a tale, nor into the drama of an apparition, but rather into a fragment of existence.

At the center is always Man. Or better, a gathering of people sharing an experience, an occurrence.  The sacredness arises, not seldom, as the deeply human core of each person’s experience, as the paradigm of a shared feeling.