2004-2040

36 WORKS FOR 36 YEARS

WORK 13: Paintings

Every month Frigo executes a 500 by 500 millimeters abstract painting on an illustration panel, using a size 24 square cut brush and a palette of 24 acrylic colors. This palette comprises all the primary and secondary colors as well as a lighter and darker version of each of them. In addition to these 18 resulting colors, Frigo uses white, black, gray, silver, brown and gold thus resulting in a total of 24 colors. After being executed, each painting is photographed and the resulting image colorized using an image editor. Each painting is, from left to right, the continuation of the former. The paintings are later embroidery and use as curtains to darken the 12 corridors of 45,5 meters where the screens of drawings and the plaques of casualties are also displayed. The actual result at the end of the project in 2040 will be a 534 meters embroidery making it the longest painting conceived by an individual over the longest amount of time.

Month painting number 85
Frigo painting setup in 2013
Frigo painting setup in 2013

 

Frigo begun painting at an early age and in particular after attending art classes when studying as a teenager in the United States. From the age of 18 he used his dead step grandfather study to paint. Causing his step grandmother nausea for the type of materials he experimented with, he soon begun painting in garages and later in nature. Beginning to paint symmetrically with both his hands and using more natural products, his painting became increasingly ritualistic and the filming of the process became increasingly relevant. Upon moving to Vancouver to study, Frigo, unable to paint, begun cooking instead and documenting his daily life which lead him to his current project.

The most important feature of this work is that Frigo executed his painting acting as a medium, an approach already experimented by Hilma af Klint. He thus freely paint with the only objective in mind to create a present a full palette of colours and shapes, in line with early abstract painting theories such as those of Wassily Kandinsky.

WORK 14: Walks

Every evening, after a day of walking, Frigo uses pen and paper to trace his movements. Every morning he manually retraces the resulting sketches on a vector graphic program using a computer mouse. The digitization occurs on a 520 by 520 millimeters layout. The top, right, bottom and left of the layout are respectively the north, east, south and west of where the walks occurs mostly in different cities or different areas of a city, or again in nature. The result is a layout with small drawings. The more scattered they are, the more Frigo has made of use private or public transportation and the more round they are. The more Frigo has been walking in a natural setting.

Hand traced movements of walks in the alps from month 80
Detail of windows with engraved walks
Rendering of glass of walks overimposed on ideal landscape
Location of the windows in the back of the museum

 

In an exhibition setting, the resulting trajectories are engraved on transparent glass allowing the viewer to superimposed these trajectories on the outside landscape. By looking through the various month layouts, an attentive viewer will also detect similar patterns or sudden changing in patterns or gradual increase of decrease of these patterns based on seasons and other conditions which more or less facilitate walking. Among these conditions are not only the ones set by nature like the snowy weather or by the city itself like the Shanghai traffic, but also my physical conditions which often forces Frigo indoor, like having to work in an office or being in physical pain.

While Mikael Lundberg, Jacek Smolicki and many other media artists have used GPS to trace their daily movements, Frigo is doing so manually, as Tehching Hsieh but without any geographical indication. Generally Frigo easily remembers his movements in well known environments but the manual tracing becomes more complicated in more complex cities environments like Venice. For Frigo walking has not only being a transcendentalist practice but also a means to survive in times of economic difficulties, having for example to walk to a cheap food market. Walking is also in his blood considering how his alpine ancestors had to walk in order to escape war conflicts.

WORK 15: Emotions

Every morning Frigo registers the emotional level of the previous day using a scale of 8 values. Every month, the result is a panel of 360 by 750 mm with perforations ranging from 10 to 80 millimeters representing respectively a very dreadful and a very cheerful state experienced during a day. This project has not only made Frigo highly aware of his emotions but also, in turn, very emotional. In this respect, he has learned to moderate the rise of excessive emotions.

Emotional states of month number 80
Location of the perforated panels in the final museum

 

The measuring for this work as in other works does not occur “scientifically” but it is Frigo, who assigns a grade like the reading of chakras. This subjective grading might be criticized, but in the long run it does provide accurate patterns since Frigo starts retaining this grading system in his subconscious without thinking about what might other people think about his grading. As in other parts of the project then Frigo becomes a sensing actuator.

In an exhibition setting the resulting panels make up an hexagonal cupola through which not only the light, but also the wind filtrates inside generating different sounds. The resulting cupola partitions the 432 resulting month panels in three hexagonal collars, the bottom one containing 192 panels and with each side thus containing 32 panels and being 11,52 meters long, the second collar containing a total of 144 panels with 24 panels per side and a length of 8,64 meters, while the top collar contains the remaining 96 panels with 16 panels on each side and a length of 5,76 meters.

WORK 16: Weather

Daily Frigo records the weather conditions by mapping every morning the weather to a scale of RGB values. The scale consists of 6 temperature zones characterize by 6 colors (red, yellow, green, cyan, blue and purple). To these colors, 6 furthers variations going from a pure color to a gradually darker one, are provided to map the weather conditions. For example, an autumn sunny day in Canada could is represented by a fully bright green (000, 240, 000), while a rainy autumn day following the clear and sunny day where the temperature keeps however in the same range, would be represented by a darker green (000,080,000).

RGB values used to label the weather
Weather values of a month spent in Sweden and the Netherlands with annotations
Simulation of the rgb beamer based on the weather values of month 109
Location of the RGB beam in the final museum

 

Following are the values utilized to map the daily weather conditions in relations to the temperature range. Extremely warm is represented by red colors with the following RGB values: 240,000,000 (like a day in the desert) and 200, 000,000 and 160,000,000 and 080,000,000 and 040,000,000 (like a day in the mist of a tropical storm). Very warm is represented by yellow colors: 240,240,000 (like a clear day on the hills in the summer) and 200, 200,000 and 160,160,000 and 080,080,000 and 040,040,000 (like a summer storm). Quite warm is represented by green colors: 000,240,000 (like a clear spring day) and 000, 200,000 and 000,160,000 and 000,080,000 and 000,040,000 (like a spring storm). Quite cold is represented by cyan colors: 000,240,240 (like a clear late autumn day in Russia) and 000, 200,200 and 000,160,160 and 000,080,080 and 000,040,040 (like an early snow storm). Very cold is represented by blue colors: 000,000,240 (like a winter day in an Oregon mountain) and 000, 000,200 and 000,000,160 and 000,000,080 and 000,000,040 (like a snow storm). Extremely cold is represented by purple colors: 240,000,240 (like a sunny winter day in the Antarctic) and 200, 000,200 and 160,000,160 and 080,000,080 and 040,000,040 (like a terribly freezing snow storm in Siberia).

In an exhibition setting, the RGB value collected in a month period are reproduced via an RGB lamp gradually shifting from colours to colours as the weather from a day to another can be, shifting almost imperceptibly from a daily value to another over a time span of 30 seconds and for a total of 12 minutes per month. In the ideal and final installation, the lamp will be located at one hand of rounded ceiling, projecting the colors throughout it as a large neon light, actually ending with a half circular opening. Being the opening positioned at the very end of an hypothetical building, over the precipice facing an infinite sea, at night time, the opening will work as a lighthouse, while towards the end of the day this very opening will let the natural sunset light inside.

WORK 17: Clouds

Every time Frigo observes a cloud, mostly when it is 30 degrees over the horizon, he attempts to detect a shape. Such a shape detection comes more or less naturally also depending on his propensity to imagine right then. A cloud is usually detected as two or more combined figures such as an eagle pulling a mermaid up from the butts. As for the drawings of ideas and all other annotations made for other parts of the project, the detected shapes are generally transcribed on a smartphone. Frigo does so in Italian to directly link what he sees via his mother language, creating a stronger and more direct relation to his subconscious. Such annotations, as the dreams, the drawings and other second parts of each of the trilogies of the life project, are directly reflecting Frigo's psychological state. As an example, if he detects a black man beating a naked woman with a stick, I could be right then experiencing some sexual frustrations.

Selected screenshots of shapes seen in clouds
Frigo annotating clouds seen from a cafe in antwerp in 2014
Random shape of cloud
Annotations of shapes of clouds from December 2016
Video projection of the clouds of month 80
Location of the projection of clouds in the museum

 

Every morning, updating chronologically all the parts of his project, Frigo recreates an annotation of an image detected in a cloud by using a 3D program and an archive of more than 1000 3D models Frigo has selected over the years from the Internet. The collection acts like Frigo's subconscious, a Platonic world of ideas comprising basic elements such as people, animals and objects. Generally, two models then are combined three dimensionally, creating a connection without any separation. Once the models are thus connected to recreate the annotation of the shape detected in a cloud, Frigo set a black background and set the textures to be “monochrome” white without any sun shading, thus again creating some sort of cloud but also much resembling an antique marble sculpture. Later, he orbits the resulting model in search for the best perspective from which most important elements of the generated 3D image can be observed. Having found one, a screen shot is taken and later resized to a height of 600 pixels and extended to a width of 1250 pixels if it is not too long else the contrary.

In the ideal scenario, the resulting images of the shapes detected from a cloud, are projected on a tilted trapezoid located high over a wall. Possibly inspired by the Olympic theater of Andrea Palladio and, with clouds painted in the ceiling, each of the 24 images representing a month production are shown moving from left to right in 30 seconds time resulting into a 12 minutes screening. As for the other presentations of dynamic content, it would take a viewer a whole week to view all the clouds reproduced by Frigo in 36 years. This work is similar to that carried out by Leonardo Da Vinci and other creative inventors like the designer Bruno Munari, to detect shapes in clouds in order to train their creativity and imagination as already the visual remembering of dreams does to Frigo. Strangely, also, the latter has noticed that every time there are these premises of a clear sky with scattered clouds (does not the overcast of Northern countries), Frigo himself is quite imaginative as if the celestial vault would be a projection of the vault within his head.

WORK 18: Wind

Every day Frigo assesses the wind. The following are the 8 values that he utilize to assess the wind from a most peaceful condition to a most windy one: 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 10, 15 and 30. Almost unawarely then, as he perceive some wind against him and particularly against his face and ears, Frigo sets to type down the corresponding value on his smartphone. As the data collected in a day is later replayed in 30 seconds, daily, Frigo only collects a total amount of values corresponding to a dividend of 30 (e.g. “1,2,1,3,2” or “1,2,6,5,2,5,2,5,3,2” or “2”).

Wind values with annotations from month 57
Fan simulation of month 40 of experienced wind
Frigo recording the wind in a spring day in Sweden in 2013
Location of the fan reproduing the wind in the musem

 

In an installation context, these values are reproduced by a large fan of 360 centimeters in diameter and located high under a cupola-like structure. The fan could be seen as a wind powered generator that is in fact also affected by the wind filtering through the perforations corresponding to his emotional state (work 15). Using his own body as a sensor, Frigo has learned to predict and expect days with or without wind.

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