The Heroine’s Journey of Chiara Amici

What is the best thing that I love about my work?

Art was my first pleasure after my parents’ love and playing. Working with art is a privilege: it is a healing, meditative discipline. It forces you to keep your mind open, to activate that area of ​​the brain we use when dreaming or praying, where we are in contact with something divine.

What is my idea of happiness?

Earning from my passion, being in stimulating environments with valuable people, loving a person and being reciprocated, taking care of a dog or a cat, having no economic worries, having a family that supports me and loves me, playing sports , listening to good music while painting, eliminating unnecessary thoughts.

What is my greatest fear?

Losing hope in the future.

What is the trait that I most deplore in myself?.

My insecurity.

Which living persons in my profession do i most admire?

Julian Schanbel. A free, sensitive and fluid soul.

Photo credit: Giampiero Rinaldi

What is my greatest extravagance?

When I have a thought in my head I am unable to distract myself from it, and I often end up not listening to whoever is talking to me at all. Not even a word. In this sense I’m a real disaster. Multitasking is not my thing.

On what occasion would I lie?

Lying is not something I like to do. Unfortunately, in the past, I found myself in situations where I felt that it was not possible to speak openly because of possible repercussions. In those cases I wore a mask, silently lying. However, wearing a mask for too long is not something I can do.

What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work?

Social pressure: that heavy weight weigh on the shoulders of the artist. One must always be attentive to the art market, to the various events, to public calls. Sometimes I would like to close myself in the studio to create and not think about anything.

When and where was I the happiest, in my work?

There are times when, while working, ideas come fully formed, as if they fell from space. In those cases, I often manage to create pieces that are highly appreciated by others and that satisfy me in a particular way. These are the best moments in my job.

If I could, what would I change about myself?

I would like to stop always questioning myself so much, trust my opinions more and not constantly belittle them.

What is my greatest achievement in work?

Having my own studio was one of the greatest achievements. There I was able to create large-format works

for the first time and think of installations, detaching myself from the two-dimensional surface. When I started working in my studio I was able to sell my first works. Now I feel I am truly an artist. Furthermore, thanks to the colleagues with whom I share the space, I have the opportunity to exhange ideas with other artists that I respect. The studio is now my second home.

Where would I most like to live?

I would like to to travel the world while keeping my roots in Italy, perhaps living in a mountain area. Honestly I haven’t travelled enough to be able to give a complete answer to this.

What is my most treasured possession?

A necklace received for my birthday. My mother decided to give it to me after dreaming of her father (my grandfather, who is no longer here) suggesting that she give me a gift, so she went to sell some old gold jewelry and bought me a beautiful necklace with an aquamarine pendant. At that time in my life I was very sad, and this unexpected gift gave me great strength. It is a small object that I always carry with me and reminds me how the love of my family always protects and accompanies me, even the love of those who are no longer with me.

What is my most marked characteristic?

My dreamy expression. This attracts some people, and repels others. Unfortunately, they draw me like this.

What is my most inspirational location, in my city?

The rooftop terrace in the condominium where my mother lives. I’ve been sitting there crying all my tears, listening to wonderful music, kissing various people, reading lots of books, sunbathing and looking at the stars, and, last but not least, there I have been dreaming many times about my future. Many of those wishes I managed to make them come true. Some of the sunsets I’ve seen from that rooftop terrace I hope to see them again when my life will pass before my eyes again.

What is my favorite place to eat and drink, in my city?

I would like to give a sophisticated answer, but the truth is that the Bistrò under my house, Vizi e Sfizi, is one of my favourite the place to eat and drink. I love to go there with my friends after a tiring day of work. For the same sentimental reasons I can mention the Chinese restaurant where I go eating very often. It looks like a tavern and it is in the middle of the suburbs, but I like it very much precisely because of its rough atmosphere. When I am there I feel like a character in a film noir or something… I have a passion for dodgy places.

What books influenced my life and how?

All of Stephen King’s books have had a huge impact on my life. Not so much for the plot or the characters, but more for his ability to create fantastic worlds from unthinkable stimuli! This made me understand how the mind of a person, when left free to deeply follow its thoughts, can produce wonderful works without ever running out of ideas. I have learned that in order to do so one must have some rules, healthy habits that pushes him or her to work every day as if it were a prayer.

You Only Die Once. What music would I listen on my last day?

Take on me, by a-ha. I can help but imagining myself dying with this song as background music. It’s actually really funny. This song has always been one of my favorites, it gives me an instant boost of joy. It would be a perfect ending, a paradoxical closure, like in a Wes Anderson or Tarantino’s movie.

Who is my hero or heroine in fiction?

I have always liked characters who represent a prototype of unshakable justice. Those with a noble heart

and a free mind, such as Van Helsing in Bram Stoker’s Dracula, or Zenone in Marguerite Yourcenar’s Opus Nigrum. Because of Yourcenar I also fell deeply in love with the character of Adriano, in Memoirs of Adriano. They are role-models that I try to emulate every day.

Who are my heroes and heroines in real life?

The first person that comes to mind is Giordano Bruno. An unparalleled genius, almost an alien for his time, who in order not to deny his ideas in the face of the Inquisition had the courage to let himself be burned at the stake. I admire all the people who, like him, have had the strength to put an ideal in front of their lives. Some of them you can see them on the news, others are part of the history of this century: from Carola Rackete to Roberto Saviano, from Marco Cappato to Franca Viola, Anna Politkovskaja …

Which movie would i recommend to see once in a lifetime?

Call me by your name” by Luca Guadagnino, because it deals with memories of first loves, adolescence and the endless and relaxed hours of summer holidays. It’s a film that puts me at peace with the world. Ah, and then “Friday” by F. Gary Gray, perfect film with a pizza and a beer. I’ve seen it at least ten times.

What role play stories in my life and work? What do the words ‘You are the storyteller of your own life’ to me?

I’ve always enjoyed writing to tell a story, and luckily now it’s a part of my career. For this I am very grateful. Telling stories is a need that arises together with man, we couldn’t live without it. I am convinced that everyone has an omniscient narrator within him, and based on how this narrator tells his story our life can consequently be drama or a comedy, a horror or a boring cheap story. I think that the ability of changing point of view, of looking at the bright side, or even taking someone as a role-model (even just an archetype such as the hero, the innocent, the explorer, the magician …) can help us live the life of our dreams.

Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime?

Marco, my partner. One day when I was very upset about a decision to make I asked for his opinion, and he told me that he had such confidence in me that, no matter what I would have decided, it would have been the right one. Since then I believe in myself much more, and I have lost many of my fears.

Which people or companies would I like to work with in 2021? Which people in my profession who can make a real difference in my creative career would i love to meet in 2021?

I would like to be able to exhibit my works in the apartment / exhibition space of Casa Vuota.

What project, in 2021, am I looking forward to work on?

From the beginning of the year until now, I have been working on very conceptual and complex projects and installations. Now I can’t wait to “rest” and dedicate myself to smaller and more technical works, my artist’s books, in which i let myself go completely. I need it to recharge the batteries. When a project is very big it steals a lot of energy from me.

Where can you see me or my work in 2021?

I’m starting to lay the foundations for a new series of works which, unlike the past, will deal with more personal and uncomfortable themes. I will expose myself using a different style. I see ahead of me a year full of situations in which I will have to show great courage. Beyond that, I will have the privilege of experiencing beautiful collaborations with professionals that I respect a lot. I can’t wait to see where all this will take me.

What do the words “Passion Never Retires” mean to me?

For me it means to be true to my art without repeating myself. To me art, just like life, it’a about discoverying and expressing your inner self. At the moment, this ‘quest’ pushes me to produce works of art

in order to express my emotions, but I do not exclude that in the future things may change and that I will expressing myself in different ways. In fact I hope so. Maybe one day I will substitute art with gardening, or maybe with writing or traveling.

Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story?

I would like to invite my colleagues and friends Margherita Giordano and Giulia Spernazza to tell their stories… We share a study in Rome and I would be really curious to know their answers to the questionnaire. 

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