On the last week of January 2016, Choisi proposes a moment of reflection on the memory displaying the artwork by Giulia Napoleone Palmira – Cittadella, from the collection of Artphilein Foundation, shown together with Claudia Wettstein’s photographs of this ancient Syrian city.
Between 2003 and 2009 Giulia Napoleone lived between Italy and Syria, where she taught painting and graphics at the P.U.S.A. University of Aleppo. In Palmira – Cittadella (2005-2007), an ink drawing on paper, the artist sublimates and condenses her suggestions and visions of the fortress of Palmyra and of the Syrian desert, a rarefied landscape once crossed by the caravans traveling on the Silk Road.
The archeological site of Palmyra has been destroyed by bombs in 2015. Claudia Wettstein’s photographs give testimony of its beauty, which now belongs only to the memory. The juxtaposition of these photos and Giulia Napoleone’s work allows a peculiar understanding of the artist’s technique and sensitivity.
Giulia Napoleone was born in Pescara in 1936. In 1957 she attended the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome and she began to experiment etching techniques. Since 1965 she has been frequenting the Sala Studio at the Calcografia Nazionale in Rome. In 1967 she specialized in engraving at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. The paper is her preferred support for ink, watercolor and pastel artworks, and for her etchings and copper engravings. In parallel to her artistic researchs and achievements, Giulia Napoleone carried on an important educational activity. In 1986 and 1999, she participated in two editions of the Quadriennale Nazionale d’Arte in Rome; in 1997 the Istituto Nazionale per la Grafica dedicated to her a retrospective show; in 2001 the Fondo Giulia Napoleone was initiated at the Museum Villa dei Cedri in Bellinzona. Giulia Napoleone exhibits regularly in Italy and abroad.
Claudia Wettstein is a scientific illustrator of archeology. She is a founding member of the Archaeological Association in Ticino and part of the Executive Committee. For many years she participated at the archaeological missions directed by Giorgio and Marilyn Buccellati in Tell Mozan, the site of the ancient city of Urkesh, in the northeast of Syria.