Giacomo Cuttone is a poet, in the most real sense of the word, where poetry transcends the lines written to the lines drawn. He felt an urge to represent poetry through colors and sketches on canvas. Giacomo’s early works ooze out poetic realism where he lyrically expressed the realm of the imaginary as an essential dimension of life and where ~
Is in front
Only the sea
And the other
In the dark
Taken from his poem Diana Buffa inspired by his work on right Caro Amore Mio Acrylic on canvas
I met Giacomo over text. Following is a brief outline of our conversation.
TKR: Giacomo, Let me start in the most usual way; what brings you to the world of painting?
Giacomo: My attention to communicate (in literature) has also led me to convey my feelings graphically. In fact, I dedicated myself to express graphically quite early, which, throughout my career, I have never abandoned (my graphics have enriched the covers and pages of poetic syllogism, novels, and essays, as well as those of some literary magazines). I delved into activities that gradually favored the collective “we” rather than the singular ‘I’ – the individuality of the artist. Throughout my career, I believed this is how collective works of Art, texts, or lines with intersemiotic editing (Art, poetry, music, video, etc.) are born.
I also dedicated myself to ceramics intended not as decoration but as “kintsugi,” where potteries are made of fragments and shards or when broken, are fixed with gold dust so as not to disguise them as decorative objects but to add to and remember the history of the object. My idea is rather a synthesis between the Japanese practice of “kintsugi” as I was mentioning, and that of the Sicilian “conzalemmi”; that is, it arises from the idea that an even greater form of aesthetic and interior perfection can be born from imperfection and the wound.
TKR: So, you mean that your idea is to amalgamate art forms to gain a collective theme?
Giacomo: Yes, an intersemiotic work that goes beyond individualities, the “we” prevails over the “I.”
TKR: Giacomo, let me ask you this. If one seeks to trace your artistic activity over the years, what are the major defining episodes?
Giacomo: Well, this is something I think of myself often. It is possible to summarize my artistic activity in three great moments:
I – Poetic Realism (until 1989), where I lyrically expressed the imaginary realm as an essential dimension of life and where I sought expressive immediacy of travel, of joy, of strength; a language that claimed the civil commitment toward Art.
II – Ideogrammatic Abstraction” (until 2009). I experimented with magical signs that embraced infinite space and radiated it, where I wove my infinite canvas, a labyrinth of memory and creativity; a sudden painting full of chromatisms, projected into the world of the fantastic, shattered into irregular geometric figures.
III – Allegorical-sign Expressionism” (until today). Here I do not abandon the symbolic-critical mediation and contact with the reality of events, its levels, and its lacerations; I try to work within the sign-symbolic transformations with the symptomatic direction that sets out the form/image as a “differential allegory.”
TKR: I am intrigued by this painting, which I have seen on social media. What does it convey? If you can help me understand briefly.
Giacomo: The painting is entitled “At the corner” and deals with the theme of “femicide.” The male figure is found “in the corner” of the canvas, a shadow on a red background; the three female figures are close, embracing each other, are in solidarity, and are united by a red band (the violence of man) that surrounds them. The color contrast is deliberate.
At the corner: Acrylic on Canvas
TKR: Thank You, Giacomo! Let me ask you an albeit different question. I myself am intrigued always by this. What, do you think are the elements in a human character that you think are important to be an artist?
Giacomo: Well, interesting. I think what stands out as an artist is his or her way of coveying thoughts.The artist chooses a not so easy way to express his mood, or say to speak, to do, and to tell and, all these, he does using his own creativity.
TKR: As an artist you would consider yourself more residing in the past, present, or the future?
Giacomo: Knowing the past is very important for an artist. You are more aware of what you intend to do in the present. An artist is a person who lives his time. But then his constant search for expressive forms and languages (which is always new) project the artist into the future. In other words, combining “past-present-future”, for an artist, is essential.
TKR: Finally, my last question. What are the primary motivations behind your Art?
Giacomo: I don’t know what are the motivations that pushed me to “make” Art. I have always painted, since I was a child (my father was a self-taught decorator and painter); I have done all the studies in this area; I’ve been teaching Art to kids for forty years … Art has always been my life, it makes me feel good and, I think, it can make others feel good because, I am convinced like Dostoevsky, that “Beauty will save the world “!
TKR: Thank You Giacomo! I really am in love with the colors you portray in your recent works. It is my pleasure to know you further.
Giacomo: Thank You! Very kind of you.
The paintings/works are chosen here to provide the readers with an opening to the transformation of his Art over time as he mentioned before.