Camera mossa, inquadrature dall’alto, immagini in bianco e nero che scorrono con lo stesso ritmo energetico della musica, impegnata a inseguire i piedi di qualcuno che gioca “candidamente” a campana. Ma al posto della tradizionale campana, il gesso traccia la forma di una molecola: quella dell’eroina…


video mono canale, 03:20”  |  DVD PAL 4:3  |  scritto e diretto da Jessica Iapino  |  giocatore Fabio Carcangiu  |  direttore della fotografia Gianluca Bombardone  |  montaggio Federico Rosella  |  musica Alessio Moncelsi  |  A Bloomer Production © novembre 2004



inhibiting empire, 200 cm X 25 cm  |  Od-ASIS, 120 cm X 75 cm  |  Ad-diction, 120 cm X 75 cm  |  you-did-this-to-yourself, 120 cm X 110 cm

use-once-and-destroy, 120 cm X 60 cm  |  High-way, 120 cm X 80 cm

street-game, 120 cm X 120 cm – collezione privata SEAT Pagine Gialle Torino

 2004, stampa su DiBond


2004, street-game (HERO)


2006, trasmesso durante una puntata su LA7, presentato da Paola Maugeri



2004/2005, alluminio, plexiglas, liquido blu, sacchetti di eroina – dimensioni variabili




“Why do you need narcotics, Mr. Lee?” is a question that stupid psychiatrists ask. The answer is, “I need junk to get out of bed in the morning, to shave and eat breakfast. I need it to stay alive”.                                                                                                     

Junkie 1953 – William Burroughs


“Ah’m a curator at the museums section of the District Council’s Recreation Department”… “Ah rake around in people’s rubbish for things that’ve been discarded, and present them as authentic historical artefacts ay working people’s everyday lives”.

Trainspotting 1993 – Irvine Welsh


I might have ended up late reading Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh. Having to read a book when a movie so dramatically beautiful has already determined its glory usually never attracts me. Power of the image upon the written word. By chance, in this circumstance, I happened to meet this young artist, Jessica Iapino, both biologically and poetically “truly young”. One case as many others, a flash as by saying it with the words of heroin users, a hasard objectif by saying it with the words of André Breton; this makes me think that some aspects of a specific liberal culture, some social calamities that have determined the epilogues of this beat culture are yet so actual and certainly stratified in our “dérives”. Power to the imagination: one should imagine before discovering.

Nowadays drugs assume various aspects: the synthetic are to the mass – mediates like the hallucinogenic oasis are to the inhibiting empires of the conscience. Equivalently saying, in terms slightly blasphemous, that a certain over refined art, astonishing “digital”, “poison” is politically correct when it dissuades from the nasty and dirty reality, when it frees or denies ones’ glare from a perceptive encounter with an uncomfortable and meaningful image. It has already been said that photography is presentable, it puts into discussion the pure liberty of the conscience, the concept of creation; without false prejudices and hypocrite moralisms, heroin is a perfect aroma for this form of presentification. The artist uses it as a litmus paper to argue some “visionary” themes like the loss of liberty of the character, the emptiness of the image, heroin and the linguistic paradox. Means of surface the digital re-elaboration, in fact the artist chooses its most material technique: the rough slab – direct print on white aluminum – a more plastic technique exactly because Jessica forms as a sculptor, binding the technique to a precise conception of the image. The artist smashes these subject matters onto our faces, although she doesn’t deny us a hypothesis of salvation: her human character has his hands tied but tries an angelic fall of liberation, plays a game with the molecular structure of heroin. What does this want to tell us: that drugs has been the only answer to the existential emptiness in which society has been struggling through or at least the one being more extreme and angry? Nothing comforting: art never is, she uses already codified codes, in this case sometimes cryptic, other times decoded when the “sign is already structured by the unconsciousness of the technological means”, by the social unconsciousness and by the intrusiveness of the personal motivation. All of these elements, which arise through the photographic means, are structured according to a deep form of the symbol.

Confronting with a theme being so violent, dirty, and capital as drug abuse – although I’m not sure that it’s really about this – it’s a difficult duty to assert and Jessica Iapino did it in the way which this artistic generation acts, through the free use of different languages which suggest from one side extreme caution and on the other the complexity of doing contemporary art. Young heroin Jessica Iapino – giving in to double meanings – who confronts, therefore hallucinates herself, with a formal and emotional problem of the digital image which cools, by nature, the realistic aspect. It is for this reason that the artist attacks with the scratch and renames the “digital poison”, intervening by scratching, double meaning words, the didactic titles which highlight a certain use of the image, therefore the plausibility of the object sets off a methodical chain of meanings in balance between real and the unreal. For one who has never used “that stuff” can only imagine the effect, the photographic image is nothing less than an analogue semi-synthetic substance, which effects become stereo-real; and if drugs (has been) a phenomenon of custom and of a hypothetical salvation of the annihilation of consciences, the images in Hero recall a formal detoxification of the devastating effect of the senseless image. New generations recognize this conflict between the desire of interaction with real life and the transposition into image of a stereoscopic dimension, three-dimensional, “stereo” created by the perceptive experience. So the artist breaks through an expressive form of art to another, from photography, more intimately connected to the private sphere, to the video which verbalizes a public, social and collective problem through the narrating moving images and the static structure of the stills and installation. At the end of the Hero journey, the artist manages to present heroin and the many flashes which it produces in a respectably clean way, she brainwashes us all – other double meaning, brainflush which stands for brainwash, – her job (and also ours) is to leave the viewer free of playing the game and free of imagination. Jessica never reveals her prototype characters’ face to create an affective disinterestedness: we are not talking about who gets stoned but who hazes himself until loosing consciousness, in a broad sense; we are talking about all of those meanings that intoxication (real or virtual) casually assumes in line with the meaning of the installation with its bluish color, constructed following a precise architecture of the space. Liberation or death, tourniquet or chain, the installation talks about salvation although it presents itself with the color of death. The overdosing of images is promptly assigned to an opponent, detached, and a therapeutic means: the still image. The photo. This is the dose of the show. Irony and paradox are never preformed superficially (Fernando Pessoa).             


Paola D’Andrea


2009 ADRENALINA – Ex Mercato Ebraico del Pesce, Roma – Italia

2007 Signale – Project “Ostrale” Ex-Mattatoio, Dresda – Germania

2006 Visionaria ’06 VisionArt, arti visive in movimento Palazzo Appiani, Piombino (Livorno) – Italia

2006 Vidi_FestiVAL06 La Sala Naranja – Valencia (Spagna)

2006 Cortometraggi – La Festa Di Roma – 2006 Cinema Della Forma, Roma – Italia

2006 Monkdogz Urban Art Monkdogz Gallery, New York City – USA

2006 La 7 – Il Festival dei Corti di 25° Ora Il cinema espanso seconda edizione

2006 MUSAE – Prima Edizione 2006 Museo Urbano Sperimentale D’Arte Emergente – Monferrato Casalese, Alessandria – Italia

2006 La Notte Bianca dei Corti all’Isola del Cinema –

2006 Videominuto PopTV Programma fuori concorso – Centro per l’Arte Contemporanea Luigi Pecci, Prato (FI) – Italia

2006 London Biennale 2006 In Arcadia – The Stables Gallery, Twickenham Riverside, Londra – Gran Bretagna

2006 AXA TV – canale televisivo satellitare da Baia Mare, Romania – International Experimental Film Festival “Carbunari”

2006 Video Island, Rassegna Cinematografica Isola Tiberina, Roma – Italia

2006 Arte del Territorio – Territori dell’Arte Circolo degli Artisti meets Aktivamente – Roma – Italia

2005 WB05 – Web Biennial 2005 – The Biennial on the World Wide Web, Istanbul Contemporary Art Museum

2005 Arte del Territorio – Territori dell’Arte Circolo degli Artisti meet Merzbau – Roma, Italia

2005 International Experimental Film Festival Carbunari 2005 Florean Museum – Baia Mare, Romania

2005 The Berkeley Film and Video Festival 2005 – Berkeley, California – USA

2005 Imaginaria ’05 Festival Internazionale di Cinema Libero – Terza Edizione, Chiostro di San Benedetto – Conversano, Bari – Italia

2005 Bayennale 2005 – International Arts Festival, Artists Television Access (ATA) – San Francisco, California – USA

2005 Fiesta-Spazio Frigo – Merzbau Arte e Cultura – Ippodromo delle Capannelle – Roma, Italia

2005 OUTVIDEO 2005 – 2nd International video-art festival in public spaces – Ekaterinburg, Russia

2005 OBSESSION Gallery X – International audio-video art festival IST II – Istanbul, Turchia

2005 Sociale Digitale – QUBE

2005 Sociale Digitale – Merzbau Arte e Cultura – Galleria Hyunnart – Roma – Italia

2005 Island Art Film & Video Festival – Prenelle Gallery – Londra – Gran Bretagna

2005 MAF ’05 – Thailand 3rd New Media Arts Festival, Bed Supper Club – Bangkok – Tailandia

2005 The Detroit International Film & Video Festival, The Museum Of New Art (MONA) – USA

2005 HERO – Galleria Arturartea, cura di Paola D’Andrea – zona industriale Settevene, Nepi (VT) – Italia


2009 ADRENALINA – Ex Mercato Ebraico del Pesce, Roma – Italia

2005 The Berkeley Film and Video Festival 2005 – Berkeley, California – USA