Bio

Donatella Marcatajo, born in 1990, is an Italian-based painter.
She’s self-taught and she inherites from her grand-father her painting skills.
She started her artistic path with comics, finding a personal way in watercolors and ink. Some of her works were selected for books illustrations.
Her paintings are focused on the interiority of her soul, getting through and exploring depression, mental health and grief.
She was featured in Beautiful Bizarre 016 issue (2017 March) and in Poets Artists Portrait issue #83 (2017, April).

Co-founder of Hyperrealism Magazine, international magazine about contemporary realism.

Founder of Sylvia Plath Italy, Italian blog for rediscovering and spreading this artist in Italy.

 


ARTIST STATEMENT:
My paintings are a journey into depression and mental health, exploring the states of mind and trying to make a sense of grief, loss and the uncontrollable flow of time.
I strongly believe that art should be a means of expressing emotions and thoughts that, when kept silent, could make us succumb under their oppressive weight.

I suffered from anxiety, depression and panic attacks all my own life. I’ve been ashamed of them for many years and tried to suppress and ignore them by pretending that they didn’t exist, as the world told me to do, putting a beautiful mask on rot, until it takes everything away from you, leaving you in the dark, in the loss of yourself and your life.

Nobody can afford to judge the sorrow of others, nobody should arrogate to itself the right to tell them how they should feel and prevent them from expressing what they really feel. Art has always been one of the freest and most instinctive means that history has ever known for that.

In an era where one thinks only of showing everything but the truth, where negative sides and feelings are repressed to support a false but perfect appearance, I finally feel the need to externalize my natural sad feelings and leave them free on canvases to turn them into art. Seeing that someone else experiences or has experienced the same sensations for which you feel wrong and different, makes us feel understood, helps us to get out of it, in the end it even saves us.

I met Sylvia Plath in what I call “the years of my mournings”: a chain of losses of the pillars of my life, which have left me lacerated, broken, changed. You think you are used to grieving, you almost resign yourself to illness and loss, but it is never the same, you are always unprepared and lost in front of death.

I found a copy of The Bell Jar and Sylvia Plath’s Journals in the deepest moment of sadness, apathy, anger, horrible nightmares, insomnia, cramps and physical aches, intolerance for life and for being alive, and it saved me.
Reading her words was like finding myself, it was a hand reaching out towards the abyss of depression in which I wallowed, it was feeling finally understood and, above all, accepted.

I therefore felt the need to feel free: free from pains of body and soul, free from oppressive thoughts and anxiety, also free from the patterns imposed by the sacred world of appearance. I started to break everything that tied me to the past, starting with art, and I created the first abstract painting, in which finally my darkness and my colors flowed together on the canvas, mixing with each other and with the overlaying figure.
I found the way to create from grief, as she did, to take anxieties, depression, pains and make something good out of it.

Recent paintings

If you’re interested in the meaning of each work, please look here: Description of works

Small works

Selected Exhibitions

2019
Premio Mestre di Pittura“, exhibition finalist, Centro Culturale Candiani, Mestre, IT, September 18 – October 13, 2019
Award Ceremony, Teatro Toniolo, September 27, 2019
2018
“Epeolatry” Group Exhibition, Auxilium Haus, Oregon, US, 7-30 December, 2018
Gallery exhibition finalist, Lethbridge 10000 Small Scale Art Award
Lethbridge Gallery, Paddington, Australia, 12 – 22 July, 2018
2017
Women Painting Women 5th Annual Exhibition in RJD Gallery, NY
October 7 to November 5, 2017
Art Lab Munich with Galerie Benjamin Eck – September 2, 2017
II Figurative, Portrait & Hyperrealism Festival – Civitavecchia, Italy – September 16-24, 2017
2016
“Red & Black”, group exhibition in Gallery X, Dublin. From December 2nd to 23.
Selected for the SWA (Society of Women Artists, Mall Galleries) 2016 exhibition
2015
IPER-Realtà, solo exhibition with Claus Word, Museo del Castello di Castelmola, Italy


2014 
“Isole Contemporanee: Japan vs Sicily”, group exhibition, Palazzo Duchi di S. Stefano, Taormina, Italy

“Arte, Ieri Oggi e Domani”, Galerie Unique, Turin, Italy
2013
Padua Art Fair, Padova, Italy
Art Fair, Carrousel du Louvre, Paris, France
Group exhibition, Studio 71 Gallery, Palerme, Italy
“IncantArti”, group exhibition, Galleria Domus, Rome, Italy
2012
Group exhibition, Monteleone Gallery, Palerme, Italy

PRESS
Beautiful Bizarre (016 issue)2017, March
Poets Artists (Portrait issue #83)2017, April
Online publications:
Moments Journal
Nuncalosabre
Supersonic Art
The Curious Brain
Hyperrealism Post
Lyrical Gipsy
Burning Ear
Artists Inspire Artists
Por Amor Al Arte
Art Attacks
Supersonic Art