Simone di Stefano is an Italian artist based in Perugia, Umbria. Since 2014 Simone is the owner of LAB 52 an artistic lab and studio close to Via della Viola, in the city center. Here he shares his passion populating the streets with his own creations. SPACELANDIA is his last painting exhibition. “It seemed to me that everyone should have had several other lives as well.” Arthur Rimbaud, “A Season in Hell.” Notes taken wandering Spacelandia by David Laurenzi (Writer and Visual Anthropologist), Extracts chosen and translated by Manuela Ferretti. “Spacelandia” is a painting exhibition by Simone di Stefano, his “creation” and “creature” that I have seen come into the world and grow slowly, between insights and changes of direction, over the last two or three years. I witnessed its birth and first steps, to then see it speed up and become a whirlwind research of exponential proliferation, where the details, often in the background of his previous work (still marked by the dominant trait of the designer and graphic designer) have come forward, magnified – as if under the lens of a crazed microscope – obtaining an unprecedented force in the passionate pursuit of color, of appearance, which is inclined towards volume. I said, “Spacelandia”, as it is a place where you can recollect, visit, and journey, but without a compass or astrological chart, since the best way to understand it is to lose yourself in it, letting yourself go to a “situationist” drift, to an unconscious wandering that allows you to find without looking. This is similar, very similar to the pictorial journey which inspired this exhibition. The artist got so involved, creating with full awareness and technical knowledge an admirable glittering spaceship able to traverse an entire galaxy, only to then lose the planned cosmic route and forget the plan and purpose of the trip, he himself discovering new and surprising things. It is left to us to determine whether the 46 paintings that make up “Spacelandia” are the galaxy to explore, or rather the metaphorical spaceship built for this purpose. In the latter case, we should look for the galaxy elsewhere, perhaps starting with ourselves. Speaking of being a part of something, it was my humble suggestion to Simone to read “Flatland” (a quirky fantasy/allegorical novel written in 1882 by Edwin A.Abbott, teacher and theologian – which describes a flat, two-dimensional, structured world in which a loyal civil servant meets a spherical messiah sent from Spacelandia, our, three-dimensional world, and becomes a prophet, mocked and misunderstood by his fellow citizens who were unable to understand the existence of other universes of three, four, or five dimensions) in order to gain inspiration for his “Spacelandia” vision, or rather, the name to give it. In retrospect it was part coincidence, part inspiration, as the rest was already there in Simone’s recent work: a thought that was also an action, a reflection that resulted in the creation of the paintings, without prior reasoning. Like all true painters, in fact, Simone speaks and understands the world on canvas, or, in this case, wood, since almost all the paintings were created using this material. It is only after that words are used to offer other clues and to give a name to what was already his perceptive drifting.