It is what comes most natural to me. After trying to make up for lacks in my character by practising law, I can finally follow my instinct and legitimate my wild side. I always felt I saw things differently, and putting my point across in an institutionalised context would often involve a cumbersome process: it felt like fighting against windmills, where I would eventually resign my initiative and follow common practice. A waste of opportunity, I think. But in Art, what represented a weakness finally becomes my strength. I feel free. It brings me back to the same idealistic energy of a teeneager, and keeps me believing that we can change the world!
What is my idea of perfect happiness?
Living the present. Unfortunately, I find it the hardest thing to do: always thinking about a million things, emptying my mind and just being there, stopping time, and enjoying that very moment, is a rare event. But when it does happen, it makes me think that nothing else matters, and that if only for that instant, life was worth living.
What is my greatest fear?
Fear itself. Not the self-preservation fear, but the kind that blinds people and scares them into defensive, aggressive mode. The fear that drives dictators to power, and hate and prejudice against whatever is different. If only we could embrace the fact that the human race was nomad at its origins, we could perhaps see how changes and facing the different were our daily routine, and our true enrichment: evolution happened because of challenges with the new, not because of conformity, ownership, borders and possessions, which were (and still are) a burden to freedom – and often to survival itself.
What is the trait that I most deplore in myself?
I do not understand how my closest friends and family can stand me when I am grumpy. I am unbearable. I have no patience. I say things I regret. I hate myself afterwards. I will always say sorry with my heart on my sleeve, but it should not have to happen. My husband and my children are more mature than I am. I hope I make up for it when I am fine though – I hope I am as rich in loving as I am in grumpiness.
Which living persons in my profession do i most admire?
Anyone with the urge to communicate, to change, to scream, to provoke. Anyone who does it because they believe in it, regardless of what the viewers will think. Anyone who dares with a purpose.
What is my greatest extravagance?
Doing gardening naked in the garden? Petting my mum’s wild chicken, who roam free in the garden and the woods and are pets by choice? Are those extravagances? Perhaps, always saying what I think and doing what I believe. You might not like me, but you can surely trust me.
On what occasion would I lie?
Now: what is it? 😉 When I believe that saying the truth would make no difference. But truly, I do not remember the last time I lied. As my mother says, lying is hard work: you have to say it, and you have to remember it. Chances are that the lie will grow as time passes, and truth will come out eventually. And bite twice as hard.
What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work?
Marketing! Do I really have to sell my artwork?!?
When and where was I the happiest, in my work?
Yet to come, of course!
If I could, what would I change about myself?
Everything! That would be fun…give me wings, gills, scaly skin, testicles, cold blood, branches…I would love to try it all
What is my greatest achievement in work?
Yet to come, of course 🙂
Where would I most like to live?
If I could? 4 months in a city, 4 on the sea, and 4 in the woods. Every year.
What is my most treasured possession?
I would say my children, but they are no one’s but their own. Then it has to be freedom: both mental and physical. And the freedom to choose its limitations, such as emotional attachments and responsibilities.
What is my most marked characteristic?
I am extremely adaptable, and f-a-s-t. I usually know what you are saying by mid-sentence. But I learnt to enjoy you complete it.
What is my most inspirational location, in my city?
Anywhere. Unfortunately, rubbish is everywhere. And my practice starts with collecting it to re-purpose it.
What is my favourite place to eat and drink, in my city?
In London, I like to change. In Trieste, it is a lovely restaurant with outdoor space on the sea which seems to have stopped in time… some 40 years ago.
What books influenced my life and how?
Most of them! As a child, I would read more books at the same time. I would stay up all night to finish one. Mainly Italian, Russian, English and French literature. Although King Solomon’s Ring, by Lorenz, has been my guide for years.
Who are my favorite writers?
From my early reading years: Dahl, Stendhal, Dumas, Tolstoy, Asimov, Borges, Doyle, Poe, Lovecraft, London, Dickens, Twain, Eco, Calvino, Benni. More masters later on. At the moment: my children.
You Only Die Once. What music would I listen on my last day?
Mozart’s Requiem for a grand finale, Pink Floyd’s Not Now John for one last laugh, Bowie’s Space Oddity for a peaceful adieu.
Who is my hero or heroine in fiction?
Hector of Troy
Who are my heroes and heroines in real life?
Anyone who sees the big picture and places the ecosystem above his/her individual needs, as much as possible. Anyone who makes the world a better place. Anyone who keeps believing in themselves against all odds, regardless of prejudice and fear.
Which movie would I recommend to see once in a lifetime?
2001: A Space Odyssey
What role plays art in my life and work?
It is a way of thinking which is a part of me everywhere, anywhere. Is it really possible to stop seeing the world as art?
Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime?
Excluding myself? My children, my husband, my mum, my very few Friends. Or so I like to believe!
Whom would I like to work with in 2018?
Anyone who shares my goal to focus on making the world a better, nicer, cleaner place – in all possible ways.
Which people in my profession would I love to meet in 2018?
Anyone stimulating, interesting and enriching!
What project, in 2018, am I looking forward to work on?
My Solo exhibition “Little Things: Re-think, Re-use, Re-purpose” (Bridgeman House, 1 Radnor Terrace, London, 10-24 May 18), where I am launching the Payment in Kind(ness) initiative, whereby I accept eco-friendly acts (Little Things) as payment in kind for my artwork. I am very excited about this initiative, as it is a way to contribute towards the ecosystem through what I love doing: my art. I hope it will not only increase awareness towards little things we can do to help the planet, but possibly stay as a habit for those who try them for the first time and even better, bring other people to apply the same scheme in their trade! I would be delighted if that happened.
Also, I am really looking forward to working on a couple of exhibitions in October with fellow artists from the Canary Wharf New District Residency last year. Both the artists and the experience were fantastic, and the strong bonds we created are now coming to fruition both in a group exhibition in Depford and in a smaller collaboration with Simon Brewster, Giulia Caciuttolo and Carolyn Morris for a month-long exhibition in Kensington, based on found objects. It will be intriguing, and a lot of fun!
Another very interesting project I have been contacted about is “A Breath of Fresh Air”, by LIGCA, which involves a school in New Dehli and a couple of schools in London, inviting pupils to submit ideas on how to solve the problem of air pollution. As the problem concerns me deeply, I am very keen to contribute as much as possible.
Lastly, I am excited about curating the BAMM mosaic exhibition at the London School of Mosaic, in September. It will be an interesting experience in a new, vibrant space, with great potential.
Where can you see me or my work in 2018?
- Artwork on view and for sale at the stunning, newly restored ex chiesa di Santa Chiara, Fond. Manin, 1, Murano, Venice, Italy – www.experiencemuranoglass.com
- CWND Exhibition], No format Gallery, Deptford, London, 15 – 29 Oct 18
- “Meeting Room 1”] Exhibition, 375 High Street Kensington, London, 4-31 Oct 18
- “Little Things (Re-Think, Re-Use, Re-Purpose)” , SOLO Exhibition, Bridgeman House, 1 Radnor Terrace, London, 10-24 May 18
- FLUX Exhibition, Chelsea College of Art, London, 11-15 April 18
- “OureARTh”, Kunsthuis Gallery, Mill Green Farm, Crayke, 24 Mar – 23 Dec 2018
- Exquisite Arts Magazine, March 2018 (pp. 39-42)
- BowWow Haus London: designing and decorating a dog kennel, then on exhibition at St Pancras Renaissance Hotel, Londonfrom 16 March 2018 and auctioned for charity on 26 April. Profits to go to Blue Cross (https://www.bluecross.org.uk/)
- The First Berliner Art Book 2018, January 2018
Or at my studio, at the London School of Mosaic, 73-9 Ludham Basement, Mansfield Road, London NW5 4SF
What do the words “Passion Never Retires” mean to me?
That even at 90, your mind still thinks 20.
Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story?
Giulia Caciuttolo, Carolyn Morris, Andrea Coltman, Jane Pickersgill, Rita Isaac, Fiona Roberts, Nadia Everard, Sarah Hawley, Yutin Wang, Amy Buzzard, Venetia Nevill, Monique Wan.
How can you contact me?