Interview: Letteria Russo
Luca Curci talks with Letteria Russo during FUTURE LANDSCAPES, third appointment of BORDERS Art Fair 2020, at The ROOM Contemporary Art Space.
Letteria Russo, in art Lillylilla (Messina, 1975), has always deeply cherished the love for painting, through her artistic formation that had been various and multifaceted. Before obtaining her Design Master’s degree in Milan, she graduated in her studies in art and jewelry in Rome. Under these premises, in the years to come, she founded a design studio with her siblings, collaborating with diverse fashion Maisons, creating eyewear and jewelry for over twenty years. In the last years, her inclination for pictorial art has gained the upper hand, bringing her to engage in the participation of Italian and international private and institutionalized calls and exhibitions. Important participations that have taken place are the collective “Cultura Identità” at the Teatro Civico La Spezia (2019) and the collective exhibitions in Milan at Arcadia Gallery, Genoa at Satura Gallery and DivulgArt at the Doge’s Palace in Genoa (2020). In February 2020 Lillylilla is published in Mondadori’s artist yearbook “Artisti della Mondadori“. In May 2020 she is published in NowArt magazine and also receives the international trophy award “Tavolozza d’Argento” rewarding her efforts in art and technique. During Autumn 2020, Lillylilla will take part in the collective exhibition HubArt in Milan and Art Design Milan in Via Tortona. In October, she will exhibit with ItsLiquid group in Venice at ‘Borders Art Fair’ and in Satura Art Gallery (Genoa).
Luca Curci – What is art for you?
Letteria Russo – Art is a universal language, a form of communication useful to express feelings, emotions and sometimes to send messages to those that observe. Art is my corner of paradise, my refuge where I can cuddle my self, the place where I feel well and safe. Art is a way to travel inside ourselves, for me it’s the cure that helps me to feel better and to express emotions and impalpable vibrations, it’s a dialogue with the inner self. Every detail could be considered as a clue to my state of mind.
LC – What’s your background? What is the experience that has influenced your work the most?
LR – Art has always been the main content of my whole life, from painting to designing a jewel or an eyewear. I have been working for more than 20 years in eyewear, jewelry and accessories design for the most famous fashion brands; and this helped me to work paying attention to details and going deeper into everything I do. At the same time, I continue to express my inner self with painting, I apply my creativity in combination with everything I do every day.
LC – Where do you find your inspiration?
LR – I find my inspiration both within and around me. I listen to a lot of music, all kinds of music, from classical to metal, I do love every kind of music. I also love nature and watch its boundless landscapes, and I meditate because it’s a way to listen to my inner self and take a dip inside myself.
LC – What is your creative process like?
LR – The creative process is mostly spontaneous but as the first step I use an initial meditational phase and then I let my imagination run free so the painting builds and creates itself while I paint. I feel like I have all clear in my mind and that it rises from inside as an illumination to be caught instantly.
LC – Did your style change over the years? In which way?
LR – When I studied, I preferred the figurative theme, and I had loved to draw the details of the greatest sculptural artworks such as the David of Michelangelo: I had drawn it a thousand times. Over the years, I built and rebuilt my own style and thus led me to pure abstraction where you can get lost in and create with your own imagination. I like to experiment and look for new materials: in this period I’m working on a new project with a material that has never been used in artworks. It will be released between May and June, so please stay tuned!
LC – What do you think about the concept of this festival? How did it inspire you?
LR – The Festival concept gave me great inspiration in creating my painting “DEEP BLUE”. I love to paint abstract landscapes, the concept of the festival was a source of inspiration to create a vision of a city in the future, a city that combines the material and the immaterial, that unites the creativity born in our inner self and that, through the sign on the canvas, finds its physicality.
LC – What is the message linked to the artwork you have shown in this exhibition? How is it connected to the theme of the entire festival?
LR – The inspiration is a city landscape, an aerial view, like when you travel on a plane and you feel the thrill of arriving in a new place, a new city and you see the first glimpses from above and you start to imagine how the city that you decided to visit could look like.
LC – What do you think about ITSLIQUID Platform?
LR – I think that it’s well-structured and it gives optimal access to the art world, especially for emerging artists, and I’m very thankful for this opportunity!
LC – What do you think about the organization of our event?
LR – A great experience, I think that I’ll do it again in the future.
LC – Do you think ITSLIQUID GROUP can represent an opportunity for artists?
LR – Absolutely Yes, it is a great opportunity for our category of emerging artist, a great location in a great city that usually host many arts events.