Fifteen days after the inauguration of the column “Question to the artist” which aims to present to the public the artists of the project “Arte Italiana Contemporanea in Olanda”, here is the second interview with Leonardo Vecchiarino who, near the Holy Christmas, shows his colouristic and emotional research of the human spirit.
Eclectic, attentive and restless artist, he always gives new life to his art thanks to a set of memories and materiality that, with simplicity and communication power, unravels between reality and imagination. A proceeding between concreteness and appearance, between invention and representation in a disenchanted context that is the essence of human everyday life.
Leonardo Vecchiarino has a long exhibition experience both in Italy and abroad and, still today, several of his works are exhibited at the Market Center in Dallas, the Jacob Javit Center in New York, the National Museum in Budapest, the Italiensk Kulturell Forening Interart Vasteras in Hallstahmmar, Sweden, the Deposit Guaranty Salon International in Jackson, Mississippi, the Foyer International in Paris, the Stockholm Exhibition Centre and the Trade Center/Harumi in Tokyo.
An already international artist to whom I had the pleasure of asking questions:
TELL US ABOUT THE WOMEN YOU REPRESENT IN YOUR WORKS, CONTEMPORARY NYMPHS WITH A PRE-RAPHAELITE TASTE…
I am fascinated by the female universe and what it represents in human society. Life and sources of life, ambassadors of love and aesthetic reference of the time living. The women in my works are modern, beautiful and fascinating nymphs, sometimes cheeky and sometimes more collected, who have however lost all shyness and live the life of the 21st century and the rhythms of this convulsive and consumerist society almost completely impersonal. It may be, in fact, that the representation of “my women” has a completely unconscious, pre-Raphaelite root represented both by the choice of young, sensual, seductive and delicate female figures, and by the choice of pale colours, red and wavy hair and heavenly eyes like the sky and the sea. Every woman in my works is a hymn to the beauty of human existence, an emotion that I try to stop on the canvas and that I try to convey to those who meet my art.
COLLAGE AND OIL: WHAT IS THE RESULT OF CHOOSING A MIXED TECHNIQUE?
The choice of the mixed technique came from the idea of bringing together the art of painting and the art of advertising in a contamination of different languages that produces a new linguistic code in this era of continuous and new visual stimulations.
FOR COLLAGE YOU USE WALL POSTERS, MAGAZINE AND NEWSPAPER ADVERTISING PAGES, BUT WHAT DO YOU GET INSPIRED BY? WHAT MOTIVATES YOU TO CHOOSE OR DISCARD AN ADVERTISEMENT?
I use collage to draw “fragments” of contemporary everyday life. Parts of wall posters, flyers and magazine advertising pages, newspaper news images and anything else that, reproduced on paper, visually fills everyone’s daily life. The works thus take on the current existential level, recognisable and usable by today’s viewers, and become a vehicle for passing on the contemporary way of life to future generations. The composition of the collage and therefore the choice of the paper cuttings and the images to be used depends both on the possible message, sometimes explicit and sometimes allegorical, that the work brings, and also to obtain the visual and colouristic balance of the pictorial composition.
WHAT ROLE DOES ART PLAY IN YOUR LIFE AND WORK?
Art is not my work even though I wish it were. It is not my source of income for a living but it is an important part of my life anyway. Art for me is an essential diversion to everyday life and the difficulties one encounters during one’s life. In the most challenging moments of my life I have always sought through art to ease emotional tensions in order to look beyond the obstacle. A quasi-medicine to be taken when necessary to carve out moments out of time and to realize that I am alive and believe in the beauty of my dreams in order to continue to live my existence to the full.
DO YOU ALREADY HAVE PLANS FOR 2021 EVEN THOUGH DUE TO COVID-19 IT IS A PERIOD OF EXTREME UNCERTAINTY?
The long pause imposed by the Covid emergency adds new and different awareness and perspectives, both on a personal and artistic level. The personal projects in the pipeline have necessarily suffered a pause because of the pandemic but the change in programmes has led to others such as the one proposed by a great professional and exquisite person who is Elisa Manzoni. I am confident in the future and hope that life will go back to the way it was before, indeed a better life.
Thanking Leonardo Vecchiarino for his intervention that has made his poetics known, I invite you to take a look at the page dedicated to him on the website criticarte.org where you can find the works on Dutch territory: Leonardo Vecchiarino – Italian art by ELisa Manzoni (criticoarte.org)
With the hope of doing what is welcome, I wish sincere HOLY GOOD FEAST to all! MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY 2021!