Interview with artist Ermanno Cavaliere

You were born in Italy and also you are working there. In my opinion, the artistic field in Italy is very special and also recognizable. Do you feel this cultural influence on your art?


In the Italian artistic culture, I feel very close to “Arte Povera”, particularly to the figure of Alighiero Boetti. Since many years of work, I can say that my artistic production has been influenced more by the Italian culture of living everyday life. I currently live in Turin, but the city where I was fully formed is Naples.


Naples, like few cities in the world, has a voice, the voice of the millennia, of humanity in all its complexity, the voice of the most disarming beauty, the voice of life and death. It is a city as contradictory as life itself. And in this context, I have learned to appreciate another, non-canonical beauty, the beauty of the enigma arising from the tension of the contrast of the unforeseen and the uncoded.


Almost every artist has the moment in life when he/she finally has chosen the right direction of the creation. Do you remember when it happened to you?


I started to assemble objects, creating small compositions that I donated to my friends since 2005. Objects to which I gave no importance. Waste materials such as boxes, wire and paper. Then, since 2010, I have dedicated myself exclusively to collage. Lately, however, I feel the need to go beyond
the two-dimensional surface of paper.


What are the main sources of inspiration? Is your creation moremspontaneous or do you prepare the ideas in advance?


I am inspired by everything that concerns the world of images, such as fashion, architecture as a baggage of forms and compositions, cinema, advertising, art photography. It is interesting to mix all this with collage to dwell on the ambiguity that life often places before us. Deconstructing reality to capture reflections.

You also run a project "de Taglio" dedicated to collage, where you represent different artists. Tell us about / Is it a way to popularise the collage art itself ?


De Taglio is a showcase on the landscape of contemporary collage. De Taglio, since 2012, in its discontinuity, has described about last ten years of history of collage, collecting contributions from international collage artists.
De Taglio wants to express the best of international collage landscape. An exclusively analogic collage refence point. The awareness that collage is a real instrument of investigation, a language with each artist expresses himself to trace new possibilities of interpretation of reality. A search for the invisible.

The most unpleasant topic of the recent year. How did the pandemic situation affect your work? Did you change your perception of creativity and yourself in general?

During the pandemic, my works took a more conceptual and less narrative direction. I worked based on a few compositional elements and often gave up colour. The research started during the pandemic is mainly based on perceptual disorientation: altering the meaning of both the image and any words within the image itself. We have become accustomed to denying the evidence in order to maintain our habits, to not looking reality in the face, to giving up seeing, to being "without a look".


Is art for you a dialog with yourself or with society?

Both. Very often the collage reveals images of the subconscious to me over time. It's like looking inside, into the most hidden intimacy. But I can also say that it often reveals themes that do not only belong to my personal sphere but to the whole community. So it reflexively becomes a dialogue with society.

In the end, all art has created to be seen. Which audience feelings would you like to awake with your art? Which purpose of creation is the main for you?


Working with images I relate forms of different natures to generate a new compositional dialogue between the parts: altering reality to investigate new meanings. The aim is to try to go beyond the surface of things, to explore levels that are less obvious but rich in meaning. To stimulate the observer's sensitivity in order to appreciate the beauty inherent in everything: a search for the invisible.



Instagram Ermanno Cavaliere @ermannocavaliere_collage


  • Website
  • Shop