METAPORTRAITS – preface by Sandra benvenuti
Donaggio’s professional career starts in the field of advertising and fashion. Since his first shoots the artist has found a very personal style which has made him unique because of his visionary photos.Then, after reaching his artistic maturity, the drive to go beyond became for him a need.
Initially enchanted by the aesthetic potentialities offered by the new dynamics in experimentations, the author starts to study the relationship between the depth of human psyche and the theory of subconscious, and takes up his first experience in the field of fine art creating a series in 1995 that, not coincidentally, is entitled Metaritratti. The author asks friends and acquaintances to pose for him: his aim is to represent the inner ego, not with accurate or flattering portrayals but by placing the subjects outside their present time.
In this series of portraits, Donaggio detaches the character from himself and turns him towards infinity, towards an ideal projection of an image and a space getting larger and larger.
Behind the easily recognizable countenance their acting is visible: these characters are not pretending, they are actually real actors who improvise a comedy without make-up or masks, unaware of their pretence though aware of their illusion.
To create Metaritratti the artist has not used the traditional photographic background, he has invented tailor-made scenic designs using a simple white A4 paper which he cuts out or draws with charcoal to match it, in special double exposure, with any portrait. Every single work that Donaggio composes is a project, a story where there are no stage costumes but only the soul of the character that persists, wrapped in the author’s signs within a pure seducing vision. In 1995 the use of digital technology was just begun, but the author used to employ analog cameras; in fact, Metaritratti has been created with large format optical bench cameras. Yet, notwithstanding the meticulous technique of the time, Donaggio’s creative pureness has not been undermined. On the contrary, for the artist it was a challenge to win in the principle of pragmatism. The complex, arduous technical process carried out for the accomplishment of Metaritratti has given him an incredible expressive drive which has led him towards pure experimentation with more and more determination resulting in this very personal language that, still today, identifies him.