This week we connected Daniele Formica to Vibeke Mascini and Vibeke to Daniele. They answered each others questions about their artist mantra and moving situations.

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Can you formulate a statement or sentence that you’d repeat to yourself and/or others frequently, a sort of artist mantra?

I’ve come to believe that a great work of art needs to be smarter than its maker.

When a work has been trusted to outgrow the premeditated thought -and with that the control– which started it. During the working process that turning point might be misunderstood as an obstruction.

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Savage (2019)

What is the best or worst exchange you ever took part in?

Here is a recent one which I find quite absurd, thus fascinating.

I was at the house of a fruit and vegetable trader. While showing me around his house and drinking champagne from heavy glasses, we exchanged some words over his open-air bathroom/bedroom’s bathtub -which had a switch for the glas windows to turn opaque by shining light through them. I gained knowledge about lifestyle and technology, he got compliments on the bathtub.

Do you have an artwork/anecdote in the process where you felt like you were getting heavier and deeper into the ground; and one that made you feel lighter and fluid in the sky?

People who I spend time with will soon notice that I speak a lot about whales. The blue whale is known to be the heaviest animal that has ever inhabited this planet and yet it spends a lifetime relatively weightless, floating in the world ocean. It strikes me how these enigmatic beings paradoxically signify both immense weight and profound lightness.

Make a list of things you would like to perform as often as washing your hands these days.

My hands are getting drier and drier due to the continuous rubbing of a basic substance on them. It makes me really worried that they might be getting harmed. It makes me feel like I am drying from the outside.

So for every time I will be washing my hands, I as well hope I will be touching others, picking-up cash from the ground, and putting cream on my hands.

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Laurel Branch (2020)

How would you relate your art practice to your sense of time, from past/present/future to “I feel like painting today”?

I recently read a description by Ursula K. Le Guin that beautifully relates to time and timing. Le Guin helped me recognize a challenging but essential phase I reach in nearly every project I work on. When one has to be “…patient like a cat hunting. Very, very attentive, alert but patient. Slow.”

Would you describe a situation that moved you recently?

A couple of months ago I was on the phone with my mother and she was telling me how impressed she was about the silence, a silence she had never experienced before. She resides in Perugia, Italy, together with my father. She was holding the phone out of the 7th-floor window to try and share such silence with me. It had to do with the lockdown, with people having stopped doing what they would usually be doing. I imagined she could not stand it because she is as hectic as me.


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