Fashion and performance art. It is an ambitious operation where the role of poets is to maintain the delicate balance between being and seeming. This is the essence of contemporary theatre Action Poetry and Performance Art; one that today more than in past must preserve an authentic image of itself, not sweetened by deceitful or fleeting messages. And this is the theatre of Nicola Frangione, a poet, painter, writer, and an all-accomplished artist who lives for and in art.

He has no doubts about the value of this expressive power as a tool for communication with the public, an expressive power which changes its shape, colour and substance according to the nuances it is trying to convey.

And Frangione's theatre is an endless search which joins, compares, deepens and experiments with the many languages and settings of theatre. He is a representative of performance art and his vision of theatre escapes the stereotypes currently in vogue in Italy.

His poetry uses a variety of languages which enriches and completes the text. A gesture, a hushed voice, sounds which accompany the performance of an actor who imbues his words with an intensity he feels through the poetry which pervades every fibre of his being. The poet embarks on a journey within himself, exploring the depths before sharing it with the outside world. The use of space is the main element since it must not be limiting, but must act outside the box, with the construction of new visual environments.

This is called the search for the interdisciplinary character, where the specificity of an expressive means is applied to other means, and poetry, like a work of art, leaves its traditional places to fly somewhere else.

And so a play can be seen in a theatre, but also in squares, cloisters or old centres, a translation from places of art to urban environments with visually poetic locations.

The suggestion of the word is amplified by the images which are cast around the space, marked by sound effects which seal its evocative power. Multimedia has made this process possible, through which the meeting between poetry and technology, tradition and innovation has allowed one to reach new frontiers.

Nicola Frangione has become the interpreter of this new way of making art and has conceived original video art which is the set design of his shows. Body, voice and light move together without any great set design, a synergy which gives life to what many artists call art dramaturgy, in which “words in freedom”, of Futurist memory, take the upper hand.

Frangione is a renowned and highly appreciated personality in the world of theatre, especially abroad, and is an artist of interdisciplinary poetics: visual art, music and sound poetry, video and theatre direction, visual poetry and Mail Art, performance art and Action poetry.

He was born in Basilicata sud-italy but has been living and working in Monza for more than thirty years, where he directs the International Festival ART ACTION-Harta Performing Monza, which in 2009, amongst internationally renowned artists saw the participation of John Giorno, he too of Lucanian origin.

The show he performs is “Voice in movement” (and video-sound transversality) for which he made textual graphics which are projected around the space by projectors, so that the word moves with higher fluidity, thus creating a more striking setting. It is “sound poetry”, a sound event as an artistic object, where text, voice and music are closely merged. And he, as a sublime poet, has dedicated his verses, beautiful and intense, to his father's land, with the poem “Opening from Basilicata the door to words”.

Eva Bonitatibus

Potenza – november 2009