Women & Blades, triptych (660×160 cm) painted by Paola Volpato between 2018 and 2019.
In the center emerges the figure of a farmer woman holding a rake and with a pile of hay resting on her head. On the far right, a black woman holds the world, like some washing clothes. In the panel on the left is we see Franca Viola, the seventeen year old who in 1965 opposed a shotgun wedding. In front of her emerges the silhouette of a man with a knife. Other women walk in a desert landscape and the waves of the dunes merge with those of the sea where an elderly American women is doing gymnastics. From the sky, like swords of Damocles, hang knives that threatenly contrast the harmony of everyday female life.
On the right, a little girl sitting on the branches looks thoughtfully at the sensual dance of a man and a woman, caught in the moment in which he’s supporting her. A thought on love and trust. An upside-down acrobat occupies the central painting and has a vision of an upside-down world. A triptych that shows the unfolding of women’s lives passing through moments of the past and projecting themselves towards a possible future.
Women & War / Pollaiola is a triptych on the theme of women and war at the center of which an engraving by Pollaiolo is taken here in gold relief. Against the purple background, the warriors in gold only manifest themselves by moving away from the painting. We then understand the mourning of the women in the foreground, who turn their backs, painful, to the battle, taken from an image by the photographer G. Berengo Gardin.
On the sides, on a black background, figures of animals, plants and mushrooms drawn from a fairy tale imagination emerge, contrasted by dramatic figures: a refugee child in a box with his mother looking for food in the garbage, a Chinese girl hiding due to the policy of birth limitation, a dismembered woman in the woods. Two women, an ancient Goddess and a trapeze artist, observe from above as if to question themselves on the profound contradiction between an idealized and sweetened world and reality.
W&B includes a corpus of other works inspired by female characters collected from news photos:
- LOST DOUBLY (but with contrast) E.D. J953, a thought on the surprise of the time
- WOMAN&GOLD – the tramp girl from Paris who looks at us with an air of awareness and defiance, turning her back to a golden society, but empty for her
- TESTING FOR MINES The deminer with her feet in the water collects the mines left by the war. They made women and children do it in the 1950s in the Far East.
- WOMAN&DESERT the Arab woman looks at her land, desertified by the oil pumps
- FOLLOW THE SHADOW an invitation to the woman in the prostitution cage to follow the shadow at her feet: it would lead her among the flowers
- A CURIOUS CLOUD SURPRISED THE SKY the old woman leaves the woods and finds a sky full of missles