Interview with artist Samanta Malavasi

HAZE.GALLERY : Tell us a bit about yourself and your background?


Samanta Malavasi: Since my early days, I have been immersed in the world of color, growing up in a family of painters and decorators. The scent of vast cans filled with vibrant hues became a familiar aroma, and playing with wallpaper and observing my father and grandfather employing various painting techniques became a cherished pastime. Color has become ingrained in my very being, an integral part of who I am. Upon completing my studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Painting, I discovered a profound fascination for the enchanting realm of fairy tales. Embarking on my artistic journey, I ventured into the realm of authorship and illustration, crafting captivating children's books that found their wayinto the hearts of readers across numerous countries.


H.G: When and how did you decide to become an artist?


S.M: My path as an artist unfolded unexpectedly, as if guided by the currents of fate. It was not a conscious decision on my part but rather the course of study itself that propelled me towards this creative calling. Throughout this formative journey, I discovered the paramount importance of finding a wise mentor. Fortunately, I was blessed with an exceptional guide in the form of FrancoMarrocco, a renowned artist and my esteemed painting professor. With a rich background as theformer director of the esteemed Brera Academy of Fine Arts, he became a beacon of inspiration and knowledge, illuminating my artistic path and shaping my growth as an artist.


H.G. : You have a very distinct signature style to all of your works. Did it take a long time to develop it?



S.M: Crafting a distinctive signature style is a journey that unfolds gradually, requiring patience and unwavering exploration. It entails the quest to discover one's unique artistic language, allowing authentic self-expression to shine through each brushstroke. In my own artistic odyssey, this quest for individuality spanned years of dedicated research. Countless hours were dedicated toexperimenting with a myriad of techniques, meticulously blending an array of


hues, and even discarding rolls of paper in pursuit of that elusive essence. It was through this tenacious pursuit that I eventually unearthed the unparalleled imprint that defines my artisticidentity.

H.G: How do you choose which colors to use in a particular artwork?


S.M: I Trust in my artistic instincts and personal preference. I experiment with different colorcombinations, and listen to how my respond emotionally to each one. I pay attention to my intuition and the colors that resonate with me on a personal level.

There are no strict rules when it comes to color choices in art. It's ultimately about exploring and expressing your creativity, experimenting with different colors, and finding the combinations that best serve your artistic vision and intent.

H.G: What techniques do you use to create depth in your Art?


S.M: By incorporating a diverse range of materials like plexiglass, PVC, and layered plastics, I unlock the potential to infuse my artwork with immersing depths. These versatile mediums offer amultidimensional surface, inviting me to explore the interplay of layers and textures. Blending acrylic colors with plaster, I breathe life into the material itself. Through the interplay of highlights andshadows, I conjure a visual illusion, endowing objects with a tangible,

three-dimensional presence. This artful manipulation of light grants solidity and realism, allowing my works to transcend the confines of a flat surface and immerse viewers in a world of depth and form.


H.G : Can you describe your artistic process when working with acrylics and color?


S.M: Through a unique pressing process, my work manifest as imprints or abstract works. Instead of traditional brushwork, I opt for unconventional materials like styrofoam boards, plexiglass, or wood, utilizing whatever is readily available to me. This deliberate departure from brushes nurtures a sense of automatism, allowing the creative process to flow organically.

Working on the ground, I regulate the pressure applied to each imprint, imparting varying degrees ofintensity. This nuanced manipulation of pressure breathes life into my artworks, generating interplays of light and shadow that lend depth and dimensionality. The act of imprinting becomes an exchangebetween my hands and the mold.

As I'm working , the selection of impressions in different sizes and colors guides my exploration. However, the final outcome remains shrouded in the enigmatic nature of the creative process itself. It unfolds through the amalgamation of multiple layers of color, diverse materials, and an array of shapes and sizes. The resulting composition possesses a depth that beckons the viewer to delvewithin, to become absorbed in its captivating allure, temporarily disconnecting from theirsurroundings.


H.G: How do you experiment with combinations and techniques? What are they?



S.M:Drawing inspiration from an extensive study of art history across various epochs, my artisticexploration thrives on experimentation.

With thick layers of paint, palette knives, and an array of tools, I construct three-dimensionaltextures that invite the viewer to explore the depths of each piece. This deliberate approach visually profound surfaces, offering a sensory experience that transcends the confines of the surface. The interplay of tactile sensations and layering techniques brings a new dimension to my works.

HG: What impact do you think color has on the emotional resonance of your work?


S.M:Through meticulous color combinations, I craft an interplay of balance and unity in my artwork, summoning a precise mood or atmosphere. Colors possess an inherent ability to evoke personal andcultural associations, stirring within the viewer specific emotions and memories. With thoughtful consideration, I select and arrange colors to elicit distinct moods, leaving an indelible visual impact and profoundly shaping the emotional resonance emanating from the artwork.


H.G:To what extend the term of time or timelessness plays a role in your art? How do you use color anddepth to communicate it?



S.M: Time plays a profound role throughout the entire artistic process as it intertwines with the social,cultural, and historical context in which my art takes shape. Over time, both the techniques I employ and the materials I utilize have undergone a transformative evolution. Technological advancements and the availability of innovative materials have expanded the horizons of my artistic expression. From traditional canvas to plexiglass, plastic, and PVC, I continuously explore different avenues tocreate newest.

The act of viewing and interpreting art is an inherently subjective experience that undergoes its own evolution over time. As individuals and societies progress, our perceptions and responses to art adapt accordingly. The same artwork can elicit a myriad of emotions and meanings, shifting in resonance depending on the viewer's background, knowledge, and personal experiences.


H.G:Are there any artists who have influenced your approach to working with color and depth, andif so, who are they?


S.M:Many artists in different ways have influenced my work: Carla Accardi, Mary Course, Cy Twombly, Yayoi Kusama, Joan Mitchell, Gerhard Richter, Van Gogh, Schiele, Rothko, Kim Taek,Zaha Hadid, Imi Knoebel.

H.G: Any upcoming projects you want to tell us about?



S.M: At the moment, I’m delving into the world of resin, clear PVC, and wood. Each material brings its own unique characteristics and challenges, which have greatly influenced my artistic vision. Resin allows me to create vibrant, translucent layers that add depth and dimension to my artwork. PVC offers a captivating interplay of light and reflection, creating a dynamic visual experience. Wood,with its organic textures and natural beauty, provides a sense of groundedness and connection tonature.

Excitingly, upcoming exhibitions are on the horizon!



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TEXT / Irina Rusinovich