Leonardo Zappalà is an young Italian artist. He thinks art is what pushes you forward, the tool that best conveys any kind of emotions. He is a painter but first and foremost a thoughts’ collector: his thoughts are the muse who inspire his works, so much that he's collected them in a touching book, “Carpe Noctem”. Creation, introspection and metamorphosis: these the keywords of his artistic revolution.
Tell us something about you. How did you become aware of your passion for art?
I don’t know how or when my connection with art began. Art is simply and totally a part of me: my dreams, my ideas come to life in my mind; they appear under the guise of words and then they metamorphose. It all started when I was a child, I used to write down these words on a sheet of paper and then transformed them into images.
Do you take inspiration from something in particular to realize your works?
My main source of inspiration are words, the thoughts I collect in my notebooks.
“I do not know exactly how to define my art, nor if it belongs to any artistic movement in particular”.
Can you explain us your artistic creation process. How does the idea come to your mind? And how do you work on it?
Most of my ideas spring from some of the thoughts I have written down; these kind of thoughts often regard realities where I find myself everyday. There are some of the themes I face in my works, such as politics or problems that affect society or even something more abstract like love or death. From these words a draft arises: a sketch that might lay still for months before my inspiration guides me to change it into something else, something whole, sharp contours.
Do you employ any particular technique when you paint? Do you consider to be on any specific artistic movement’s wavelenght?
I do not know exactly how to define my art, nor if it belongs to any artistic movement in particular. I like to believe my art is original enough to not be inspired by anything specifically. I would define it as a “post - vandalistic” style firstLy because to realize my works I use the kind of tool any vandal would use, such as spray paints, creating different overlapping layers with the collage technique; but also because of the topics I bring up in it.
“Honestly I would like to make a living out of what I love the most, keeping evolving and constantly looking for my own way”.
Looking at your paintings, I can tellemotions and feelings make a very important part of your work?
Feelings are everything. I think art is anything able to convey a feeling, an emotion.
Sometimes, in order to convince myself that one of my works is emotionally whole, I have to hang up the paint on the wall and stare at it, even for hours everyday within a month, to figure out if it can truly communicate something, if it can “speak” even after all that time.
In your opinion, what does it mean to be an artist nowadays? That is, stand out from what has been done in the past and to leave your own footprint…
At the peak of my egocentrism, I hope to realize such a great piece of art that it will last over time, so that a part of me can last forever beneath its surface. After all, I think this is the idea that deeply pushes every artist to express and realize their works: to transmit something able to resist the passing of time and to not be forgotten.
I saw that you have written a book of poems. How did you coceive the idea of collecting and publishing them?
Even before starting painting, I used to collect my thoughts, the same thought than now inspire my artistic process. It seemed right to give a way to those words as well, which started the whole thing.
“I would define my art as “post - vandalistic” also because of the topics I bring up in it”.
Why did you choose such title like “Carpe Noctem”?
Night is really important to me, so I decided to give it a proper relevance. Who knows how to live the night at fullest, live twice as the others.