INTERVIEW: BRAN SANTOS | ITSLIQUID

INTERVIEW: BRAN SANTOS

Interviews | May 29, 2023 |

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Image courtesy of Bran Santos

Interview: Bran Santos
Luca Curci
talks with Bran Santos during VISIONS, third appointment of CANVAS CONTEMPORARY ART FAIR, at Palazzo Albrizzi-Capello.

Since a young age, Bran has been an observer of life. Raised in a multicultural household, he was given the ability to pick up on details that seemed to pass by unnoticed: distant thoughts, beauty in the mundane, dormant parts of who people are and what their cultures tell them to be. Around the age of thirteen, he found a new way to see life unfolding through his mother’s old camera and ever since has been photographing his world. His frames capture a variety of things that include moments from everyday happenings of strangers on walks, to complex staged portraits, nature, and landscapes. He believes that when an observer is fully present, the world will communicate differently. He currently lives with his cat in southern Peru and works as an art director and photographer. His work has been selected and displayed in exhibitions in France, Italy, and the US.

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Image courtesy of Bran Santos

Luca Curci – When you take photos, are you usually inspired by the situation or do you find inspiration in yourself?
Bran Santos – I think it depends on the day, but what mostly happens is that I will suddenly see a clear idea in my head that I want to create. Sometimes I’ll carry these mental images for weeks before I can materialize them and other times it’ll be as soon as I can grab my camera or other medium. Often in that journey from head to camera is when I let the situation inspire the idea further and usually it morphs into something else while playing around with it.

LC – How important is the editing process in your work? How’s yours?
BS –
I think editing plays a vital role in forming my identity as an artist. Since I was a teenager I have always admired photos that feel organic and gritty. I think that shooting on film has informed the way I see color, which is why greenish shadows have always been something I gravitate towards. I love warm skin tones against a cooler setting.

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Image courtesy of Bran Santos

LC – Among the several techniques you use, which one do you prefer to practice, and which of them are most compelling for you?
BS –
I think that the technique in my composition sometimes adds a certain uneasiness to my photographs. I play a lot with symmetry and empty spaces. I love the idea of not explaining something clearly in the photographs I take. Having questions when looking at a photograph is important to me. Some of my favorite photos portray a sense of mystery in their subject matter, where the viewer might have more questions than answers. Imagination is as important as intention.

LC – Are your artworks focused on a specific theme?
BS –
There is an unconscious theme in all of my work which is the idea of finding one’s place in the world. The relationship between space and oneself is a recurring concept in my photos whether that be in the sense of belonging, or on the other hand of not fitting in.

LC – How do you choose your subjects? Is it a reasoned or an instinctive process?
BS –
I will have an idea in my head for an image and will usually materialize it with what I know and with what surrounds me. Most of my subject matter involves my friends and observations of places that I frequent often.

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Image courtesy of Bran Santos

LC – What is the message linked to the artwork you have shown in this event? How is it connected to the theme of the entire exhibition?
BS –
My piece in this exhibition is about the relationship with oneself. The idea that your consciousness can be a separate entity has always been something that has entertained my mind. You and another you communing, fighting, healing, talking, and showing up for yourself. This photograph titled “Support” was inspired by the idea of befriending yourself, like your reflection crawling out of your bathroom mirror and spending time with you, showing that you weren’t everything that you thought you were but so much more interesting and complex. This concept connects with the theme of VISIONS because before we can have a vision of anything else we must have a vision within. What we create is reflective of who we are, so if we can admit that insecurity, doubt, love, and whatever else are a part of who we are then our work will have a greater degree of truth in it as a result. No other person can look as deeply inside of us, so if we’re not willing to go searching in these depths, then truth can not come through into what we create or in the personal vision that we build.

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Image courtesy of Bran Santos

LC – Do you agree with our vision of art and what do you think about the theme of the exhibition?
BS –
I think that the most important aspect of creating anything is authenticity. An artist must have a clear vision and a deep understanding of their own identity because the process and journey are not laid out before them, and sooner or later they’ll get to a point and question everything. That is why grasping who you are is so important in this world that constantly wants to tell you who you are. The goal of art is not to share perfect beauty but to share who we are and how we see the world. I think that the theme of this exhibition, VISIONS is bold and necessary.

LC – What do you think about ITSLIQUID Platform?
BS –
VISIONS was my first exhibition with ITSLIQUID and I absolutely enjoyed being part of this platform and the incredible community of creators that the organization represents. I think that art allows us to see what we are unable to see but somehow already know. It is a hopeful thought to think platforms like this one exist to help find artists and expand their voices.

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Image courtesy of Bran Santos

LC – What do you think about the organization of our event?
BS –
I am grateful that it was well thought out and beautifully curated. Success is in the details and the whole organization of this event was carefully executed.

LC – Would you suggest a collaboration with us? What do you think about our services?
BS –
Yes, I would suggest a collaboration with ITSLIQUID. I think your services are wonderfully carried out.

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Image courtesy of Bran Santos
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Image courtesy of Bran Santos
processed with vsco with x5 preset
Image courtesy of Bran Santos

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