Friday, 24 October 2014

10 Question Column: Contemporary Italian Artist Cristiano Petrucci


Cristiano Petrucci looking at one of his latest works part of the Ebanis series at his studio in Rome: "Italy lacks contemporary art. It is hard to find works that talk about the present, and above all, the future." Portrait by Andreas Romagnoli 
Italian contemporary artist Cristiano Petrucci answers Andreas Romagnoli and Jeanne-Marie Cilento’s 10 Questions and sits for his portrait at his laboratory-like studio in the Italian capital

LAST year, Christiano Petrucci decided to stop painting and concentrate entirely on his abstract installations using complex matrixes of plastic balls to express emotions and states of feeling. The works are crowded with these rotund objects in different formations lit from behind, creating an intense sensation of mass communication. His artworks are like giant motherboards seemingly both being plugged into a network yet suggesting a sense of alienation with the cool green glow.

Some of the round, white ping pong balls have slanting, little “ears” that stick out making them seem like both an electronic creature and a plug for an electric socket. Petrucci is interested in exploring the way we communicate using social networks and new technology and his works convey a sense of the entwined and etheric communication of today's mass media. 

“I like to interact with an art work which has a dialogue with the spectator in a direct way using new technology,” he says. Petrucci works in a white studio in Rome that he has designed like a laboratory to create his precise, clinical works: “The area where I work I purposely painted in white. I think that a studio should be antiseptic and neutral, a place that can be compared to a scientific laboratory.”  

The artist's new works subtle diffused light emanates amidst the clustered balls creating a pallid, crowded universe that seems to speak of our lives engulfed by digital communication. 

Cristiano Petrucci’s work has been exhibited in both solo and group exhibitions in Italy and Europe.

1. Where did you grow up and does this place inspire your creative work?
I was born in Rome, but I don’t think it is my source for creative research, rather I think that my style of life has affected me more.

2. Why did you choose art as your creative métier?
I did not choose anything. I don’t want to define exactly my art. I just think I can mould materials.

3. What aspect of painting and drawing gives you the most happiness?
In an art work I look for the hidden aspects that led the artist to make experimental choices. I am interested in the creative processes and their complex interactions. I don’t pay attention to technique but rather I notice the content of a work.  

4. What do you find the most challenging part of your work?
I consider beauty, harmonious geometry and the purity of forms challenging. Also the “present” is challenging to me.

5. Can you describe the experience, person or training that has had the greatest impact on your artistic career?
My artistic career follows the evolutional changes of society. Technology, for example, and its many features which  have changed our daily habits, I believe has had a great impact on my creative work.

6. Describe your studio and whether you have a set schedule of working everyday?
My studio is divided between the liveable area, which I built myself using recycled materials to create a 1960s style. The area where I work I purposely painted in white. I think that a studio should be antiseptic and neutral, a place that can be compared to a scientific laboratory. I don’t have particular schedule to follow for my work.

7. Do you find your creative process is more rational or instinctive?
I find it is both. For producing my work there are ceratin cases when it is more rational while in others it is the fruit of instinct and action.

8. How would you describe working as a contemporary artist today in Italy?
Italy lacks contemporary art. It is hard to find works that talk about the present, and above all, the future. My creative research is projected towards the future and what we will discover. 

I like to interact with an art work which has a dialogue with the spectator in a direct way also using new technology: rather than regretting the past which in our country still seems to effect new generations of artists.

9. Is there a particular town or place in the world you find inspiring?
There is no place in particular, I am more interested in the way a population thinks ~ the cerebral processes we use in our lives.

10. In our digital age, what does art give us?
The digital age has opened many higher levels of knowledge which before did not exist.


The video below shows Cristiano Petrucci working on his new piece at his studio in Rome

Artist Cristiano Petrucci with his new work Ebanis at his studio in Rome. Photograph by Andreas Romagnoli


Cristiano Petrucci's latest works part of the Ebanis series he created this year.


Ebanis 2724, mixed media with ping-pong balls, 2014, 50x35cm 




Ebanis 1327,  2014. Mixed media with ping balls: 140x96x20cm.


Ebanis 921 2014. Mixed media with ping pong balls:140x96x20cm.



Ebanis 2494,  2014. Mixed media with ping pong balls: 53x38x60cm.



Ebanis 1748, 2014. Mixed media with ping balls, 40x96x20cm.



Ebanis 2026, 2014. Mixed media with ping pong balls: 65x96x20cm 


Ebanis 456, 2014. Mixed media with ping pong balls:140x96x20cm.

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