What is the best thing that I love about my work? My job is daily experimentation. The different projects I work on are always different, always very innovative and always contain a new challenge. I rarely replicate a formula. Generally when I found a particular creative solution to the eternal dilemma that inspires all my artistic adventures – the theme of identity – I am already elsewhere, toward new ideas that came to my mind while I was working. I like this variety and pioneering spirit.
What is my idea of perfect happiness? To work on a new project and above all to live the initial part of the research. Research is really the most exciting part of the work, because it’s the time when you get away from what you already know and discover new perspectives. The days of research are characterized by that creative chaos that really makes me feel alive. I wake up very early, very happy and excited to start a new day of work.
What is my greatest fear? My greatest fear is to fail in accomplishing the great multi-faceted creative castle that is taking shape in my life, almost regardless of me. I can see this castle, and I know what it’s about: my fragility, my wounds and fractures. Every now and then I’m afraid I cannot complete the work, putting the last bricks that will make a sense of everything. But there are also those short moments of wisdom telling me that the sense is already there: the sense is in doing.
What is the trait that I most deplore in myself? Sometimes I’m too lonely, too closed in myself, and it’s never good. Creativity must be fueled in the relationship with the world and with the others, otherwise it becomes a self-referential exercise.
Which living persons in my profession do i most admire? Laurie Anderson, a great experimenter of performance languages that has always looked ahead, always a span in front of the others.
What is my greatest extravagance? optimism. I am an eternal optimist and this is truly the greatest extravagance today.
On what occasion would I lie? I do not like lying, because lying becomes a domino that triggers a chain of other lies. I could not handle the game for a long time, even from a purely practical point of view. Maybe I would only lie in one case: to protect a family member or a friend.
What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work? As I have already said, my work often requires moments of great individual focus that always turn into monastic seclusions. It’s a work that involves long periods of solitude. I like solitude but sometimes it becomes a counterproductive vice. So I try to devote myself as often as possible to works that require the collaboration of other artists, in order to grow and get out of the shell.
When and where was I the happiest, in my work? There are many moments of absolute happiness and I can not remember one in particular. I’m always very happy when I talk with the audience after a performance or a projection of some of my videos. Whenever an absolute stranger approaches me and tells me what she/he could understand of the work, eager to look for confirmation. This triggers a process of empathy that always reveals something interesting about the person I have in front of me and above all about myself. Many strangers I met after my shows opened up absolutely new and unexpected perspectives on my work.
If I could, what would I change about myself? nothing
What is my greatest achievement in work? A project in particular, “Mother – Rhythm”, which involved a long work with my mother on her memories, through old photographs and family papers. I’ve always had a very conflicting relationship with my mother. This video completely changed my idea about her. Discovering that stage of life in which I still did not exist, made me think of her as a unique person, regardless of me. A little girl with her enchanted world, a girl full of hopes, not just “my mother”. This process has restored all the details of my relationship with her in the right perspective and I began to feel endless tenderness for that little girl. My work has allowed me to rediscover my mother and this was my greatest achievement.
Where would I most like to live? I’m already live in the place I feel is perfect for me: Rome, with all its history, culture, art, its decadence, its excesses, its baroque. This city represents me perfectly.
What is my most treasured possession? A very famous Italian artist, Mario Ceroli, a family friend, when I was little, made a sculpture of the whole family reunited. We are four, myself, my sister, my father and my mother, immortalized in our affection, in our union, each linked to the back of the other, as soldiers facing the time and the world on every side.
What is my most marked characteristic? Many say my generosity, I believe it is my narcissism
What is my most inspirational location, in my city? There is a square in Rome, Piazza Navona, with a beautiful statue dedicated to Giordano Bruno, a monk, philosopher, mystic and poet, burnt in that same square on the stake for heresy in 1600. Giordano Bruno is the symbol of free thought against any dogmatism, of research against obscurantism. To me, this is the most beautiful place in Rome.
What is my favourite place to eat and drink, in my city? I love the restaurants of the Jewish Quarter of Rome. Wherever you go you eat and drink well.
What books influenced my life and how? There are so many books! I would say that one of the first books I read when I was still a little girl, “all quiet on the western front”, by Remarque, as changed my life forever. I was just nine years old, yet I had access to the family library. I never read books for children, I started from the ”serious stuff” in short. I remember that after reading that book I wrote messages dedicated to the protagonist of the novel, put them in glass flasks and buried them in the garden. I’m thrilled to come back to my childhood home, digging and searching for those messages. Sooner or later I’ll do it. Perhaps I left those messages to the woman I’m today.
Who are my favorite writers? Chuck Palahniuk, Diane Williams, Terese Svoboda, Helen Oyeyemi
You Only Die Once. What music would I listen on my last day? all the album Per Sounds by the Beach Boys
Who is my hero or heroine in fiction? Barbarella, as Jane Fonda in the movie, but also the french comics.
Who are my heroes and heroines in real life? Anyone who lives his life with truth
Which movie would i recommend to see once in a lifetime? Mulholland Drive, David Lynch. Best movie ever.
What role plays art in my life and work? Art IS my life and work.
Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime? My friend and partner in crime is Paola Mineo, an Italian live artist. With Paola we are working on a new innovative project: Performance Art TV, the first “social tv” streaming every week new performance art pieces on Facebook.
Whom would I like to work with in 2017? Marcel·lí Antúnez Roca, great Spanish artist, experimenter and innovator.
Which people in my profession would i love to meet in 2017? just a few names: Marina Abramovic, Lady Gaga, Laurie Anderson
What project, in 2017, am I looking forward to work on? I’m working on my new experimental feature film “Men at war”. It’s a visionary movie about men at war with the world, with Nature, with the women, and with themselves. An intention that is chased through the unraveling of a very hybrid narration, that combines and mixes together the languages of performance art, documentary found footage and experimental animation.
Where can you see me or my work in 2017? I always keep up to date on my website where you can find all information: http://www.francescafini.com
What do the words “Passion Never Retires” mean to me? It means that every day you start from scratch, that each project transforms you into a different person, that there are no limits to imagination, projects, and ideas, and that the only thing that never ages is the desire to start over.
Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story?
for sure, the very creative performer and video artist Sylvia Toy https://
How can you contact me?
you can visit my website: http://www.francescafini.com