Daniele Papuli


Daniele Papuli


Press Release

Daniele Papuli
Sculptographies installations videos

ASSAB ONE opens its 2020 season with a project by Daniele Papuli. The exhibition recalls the elements that made the story of this venue, where books were printed and bound.
ULE is a visionary tale told by paper, water and ink.

The video. 285 metres of lightweight paper till rolls that Daniele Papuli unfolds like the roll of a film. A project dating back to 2009 when the artist dyed in ink the 19 rolls of paper that are now grouped together under seven headings: ule, breath, world, flight, voyage, evanescence, distance. A magical image made of splashes, halos, deep shades of black, branching veins; a slow process of osmosis that belongs only to paper, the artist’s favourite medium for over two decades. In a neverending game of associations, shapes and blurs merge into different forms, like the shapes children see when looking up at the clouds.

The sculptures / the installations. The sculptures emerge like archaic presences, extrapolated from the narrative. They are made by different types of paper, hardened through stratification and pigments, adorned with splashes of color, halos, motives and patterns that turn them into visionary creations. Papuli names them “cuti”, a word that in his homeland Salento means a stiff solid mass.

But ULE is an experience that involves other senses. The accompanying sounds are the recorded movement of large sheets, strips and slivers of lightweight or heavy paper; crackling, rustling and tearing sounds like the effects produced by a Foley artist using sounds and images which, in this case, are vibrations and splashes of colour.

*This is a multi-handed project: the hands of the artist plunging into the raw material and even extracting its sound; the hands of Gianni De Rosa strumming, plucking and skipping over the taut strings of his viola; and those of Renato Ferrero, patiently editing images, sounds and silences.

**A brief video, projected on paper, introduces the project to the visitor. It presents the work, the concept, the genesis and harmonious development of ULE, which in the dialect of Salento means birthmark, an unfulfilled craving that appears like a blemish on the skin, but also flying, the desire to be light, ethereal.


Daniele Papuli (1971 – Maglie, Puglia) After obtaining a degree in Sculpture from the Brera Academy of Fine Arts, he settled and started working in Milan. While attending an international workshop in Berlin in 1993, he became interested in the methods of producing paper.

During this period, he met editor Vanni Scheiwiller who asked him to produce hand-made paper for the graphic layout of the art book Trittico, tre poesie di Wislawa Szymborska, tre collage di Alina Kalczynska, printed in 300 copies.

His constant research and experimenting with new materials, with structural and tactile characteristics similar to paper, resulted in a series of interactions with sculpture, design, installations, set designs for prestigious fashion houses (Missoni, Hermès).
Since 2002, Daniele Papuli has been exhibiting his work at the Dilmos Gallery in Milan. In 2007 his pieces were included in the international traveling exhibition The New Italian Design organized by Triennale di Milano. In 2016 he collaborated with architect Michele De Lucchi within the framework of the DoppiaFirma project sponsored by Fondazione Cologni dei Mestieri d’Arte. He was involved in projects and workshops dedicated to children at Triennale di Milano and Muba.

In 2010, a solo exhibition entitled Vis à Vis carte sculture, curated by Luciano Caramel and Kengiro Azuma, was held at the Fondazione Calderara di Vacciago di Ameno (No). In 2011, the exhibition Le Gèant de Papier, projections de la matière was held at the Flux Laboratory in Geneva, with four installations used as a stage for dance performances created especially for this purpose. In 2013 he gave his first live performance, Paperdance, at Flux Laboratory, and two years later he was invited to take part in The Electric Blue Night at the Teatro dell’Arte in Milan: on both occasions he used a modular paper structure emitting a series of sounds. He made site-specific installations for the exhibitions Metamorfosi at Palazzo Ducale of Martina Franca, and for Carte e Fibre at Galleria Casa Dugnani di Robecco sul Naviglio.
In 2017, the Galleria Colossi Arte Contemporanea, Brescia organized a Daniele Papuli solo exhibition entitled L’era della carta forme e visioni, in the same year Visionomie at the Galleria Stefano Forni in Bologna.
In 2018 he was invited to the Parma360 Festival of Contemporary Creativity.

Both the Italian and the international press have dedicated numerous articles to the artist, in specialized magazines and international publications about Paper Art. The most recent publication by Skira is Carta Preziosa Il design del gioiello di carta, edited by Bianca Cappello, featuring a “small, wearable, white sculpture”.