Can you tell me a little bit about you?
I was born in Italy on the last day of the year of 1987.
They told me it was snowing.
From what memories I have, I was drawing before speaking.
I studied at the Academy of Fine Arts: theatrical scenography and costume.
While I was studying, at the age of 15, I was illustrating children’s books.
I didn’t have much luck: instead of following the fairy tales, I made the wolf fall in love with Little Red Riding Hood.
Then I started a long and happy collaboration with Vogue Italia.
I had so much fun, combining shapes and proportions, colors never forgetting the history of art.
And now here I am, painting bodies in tight, almost claustrophobic, scenic spaces.
They are conglomerates of flesh, they are bodies that fall, they fail.
A dialogue with a space that is also a character.
What remains of us when we leave?
The space created by the emptiness of corporal memory.
I look at the ballets of Pina Bausch, the theater of Grotowsky, the snow of Brueghel.
Beckett said: “Try again. Fail again. Fail better.”
So I mean painting: of placement and dialogue attempts.
When did you first discover art, or realize you wanted to make it yourself?
I realized I wanted to make art when words weren’t enough, or I wasn’t able to express what was easier to express on paper.
What do you like most about working where you do?
I have a small studio full of light, in an old house in the center of Turin.
I like that atmosphere, which is a mixture of ancient and decadent.
There is a lot of silence inside my studio, although full of things.
Childhood and family memories, Dutch vases for tulips, tapestries, pigments in pharmacy jars, strange toys that lack an eye, my grandmother smiling in a photo.
And many drawings, many.
What ideas are you exploring in your practice?
Last year I won a residency at the Kunstlerhaus Bethanien in Berlin, I was there for a year.
It was an incredible experience for me and my artistic vision!
I changed everything: formats of paintings, colors …
I resumed my studies as a scenographer trying to understand how to make space dialogue with my bodies.
How to balance the full and the empty, giving meaning to both.
The canvases have became very large and this relationship is even more physical with them (I had to move away and get closer to observe them in their entirety)
The colors have become warmer with very acid traits.
I gave myself freedom.
I realized that my figurative and sometimes decorative painting was like that only thanks to an initial abstract synthesis.
It was a wonderful experience!
I understand what it means to be a painter.
What is your process like?
I work on a single art piece at a time.
I wouldn’t be able to work on multiple pieces at the same time.
The longest part is actually research, I am always drawing a lot to make every single work.
I create lots of sketches first, then work them, pick up pieces here and there.
I create a sort of map of the painting — but only of design, never of color.
The colors are instinctive; I do it directly on the canvas.
Is there any subject or theme you’ve been particularly interested in lately?
In my creative process there is a lot of space. In painting I often look at the silences of Balthus, the first snows of Brueghel, the gentle ways of Serusier, the mentioned farewells of Léon Spilliaert, the blue shadows of Prussia by Vuillard and the macros by Domenico Gnoli. Among the most contemporary there are Louis Bourgeois, Berlinde De Bruyckere and Anna Uddenberg. In short, a kaleidoscope of actions in perfect aesthetics.
Let’s say that if I were to silently meet a stranger, to present myself only with objects, sounds and images, I think they would be: “Cien años de soledad” by Gabriel García Márquez, “All about Eve” by Joseph Mankiewicz, the notes of a “Stabat Mater ” by Pergolesi and “those two puppets made with soap” in the final scene of “To Kill a Mockingbird” directed by Robert Mulligan.
What is the strangest thing you’ve ever had to do for art?
Do you have a day job or other work that you split your time between?
In recent years I have had the good fortune of working as a full-time artist.
I like, however, to be able to codify my vision in other fields.
I find it healthy, a breath of air.
This is why theater and fashion.
Do you have a mentor, or a piece of advice (or both), which has influenced your practice?
I have a very solid family that have given me a strict but outlined education.
I’ve always followed what I thought was right for me, and above all, I thought, don’t get ahead of yourself.
Consistency first of all.
Is there any piece of advice you would offer to others?
“…if the rain has to separate from itself does it say ‘pick out your cloud?'”
What does it mean to you to have a “community?”
Books, music, museums, friends.
This means having a comunity!
It is a rescue network, a space of comfort from which to draw new energy and new horizons.
What is your studio like?
Do you have any routines or rituals in the studio that get you into the mode or mindset to make your work?
I go to the studio very early, around 08.00 AM, and stay there until evening.
From Monday to Friday, I am very methodical.
I usually listen to classical music to concentrate, lately it’s Handel’s turn with his Julius Caesar.
…pencils and start.
How significant has attending art school been on your practice?
I chose scenography instead of painting because it was the course that would allow me to open my mind in relation to space.
You can’t design an Ibsen if you haven’t read it.
This gave me the opportunity to broaden my vision, touch different materials, understand how they react to lights, shifts and tensions.
The life of small things has allowed me the luxury of observing them and bringing everything into painting.
What do you find most daunting, challenging, or frustrating about pursuing art?
I believe that one of the challenges is to maintain a coherence and an aesthetic and content recognizability.
I think we all have a fear of being forgotten.
How would you define “success” in art?
Sincerely? To enter museum collections.
What is the most exciting thing you’ve done or accomplished so far, related to your work?
When in 2016 I was entered by Forbes in the list of the 30 Under 30 most influential creative in Europe.
What are you working on right now?
Right now I’m working on a nice project for a group show of young Italian artists, The Italian Open, that will open in Berlin at Galerie Rolando Anselmi, on June 22.
Next January I will leave for a residency in Los Angeles, and I’m really excited!