LUMINOUS CHAT: Interview with APOTROPIA
APOTROPIA is a Rome-based artist duo formed by Antonella Mignone and Cristiano Panepuccia. Their work explores the intersections of dance, performing arts and live audiovisual production.
Using light, sound, motion, bodies and time, APOTROPIA create works that explore the philosophical, anthropological and scientific elements of human culture.
Your first contact with the art: Dance, theatre and the parallel reality of the stage have played a central role since Antonella was a child. Years later, her stay at the Accademia Isola Danza of the Biennale di Venezia profoundly broadened and changed her vision of the art world. Cristiano grew up in a family where creativity has always been encouraged, in the city of Rome, which completely envelops you with such an amount of artworks, that his first conscious contact with art is mixed with other blurry memories, in the cauldron of childhood experiences.
Your path through the art: The first step of our collaboration was to mix our primary abilities. We started video-dancing very soon through merging music with cinema and dance. We experimented a lot with audiovisual composing keeping a strong focus on the re-mediation possibilities of the human body motion. We could identify two macro-phases: the first one, which runs from 2005 to late 2012, was a period of struggle, growth and exploration. Then, from 2013 onwards, we thought it was time to exhibit our artworks in festivals, museums and art galleries, and that’s what we are doing.
Your inspirations: Our work takes inspiration from symbols, rituals and universal aspects in cultures of mankind. We are also particularly attracted to the philosophical aspects of the apparently random events that unexpectedly arise and interfere with life.
Your aspiration: Being part of the gear in those moments when everything seems to be tuned to a kind of universal harmony.
Your favourite artwork (made by you): We don’t have a favourite artwork. All works refer to specific moments in our lives, each with its precious uniqueness. Every last piece, however, usually receives a particular affection, as if it is a young being just coming to the world.
Your favourite artwork (not made by you): Honestly, we cannot find a work that rises above all others. The history of art is full of masterpieces that it is impossible for us to choose a favourite one.
Your 3 favourite artists and why: Among the artists who have mainly inspired us, we could highlight: Caravaggio, his oblique light, his subjects emerging from the dark background, that’s one of the recurring elements in our work. Andrej Tarkovskij, who saw in cinema more affinities with poetry and music than with narrative. Jorge Luis Borges and his particular philosophical and metaphysical vision of reality. His magic point of view on the nature of existence.
Why video art: We could call it video art or avant-garde cinema or video dance, sometimes there’s no difference at all. Audiovisuals allow us to merge
our primary fields of interests into one medium, creating something new that would be impossible to achieve with any other artistic medium. Moreover, through the combination of the aesthetics and mechanisms of perception from both film and dance, we have been able to create a personal language to communicate our narratives or the otherwise absence of narrative.
Your relationship with the other arts: We are totally interested in all forms of art. Our activity is influenced by a strong interest in the intersection areas that they create when they meet and intersect. This is strengthened by the fact that with cinema it is possible to incorporate and re-mediate all the other arts.
Suggest us an artist to discover/to feature on the PhotoPhore: Olivier de Sagazan is an artist who deserves particular attention. His “Transfiguration” performance is really stunning.
Images courtesy of APOTROPIA