Sunday, March 29, 2009

Accumulating Skills And Techniques ~ Marcello Massoni

I came accross Marcello Massoni of Gaya Fusion Ceramic and Design on the pages of FaceBook. I love architectural ceramic installations and that was what caught my eye. But all of his work is beautiful. Marcello is an Italian man living with his family and creating in the tropical paradise of Bali, Indonesia.
Why clay?
I love concrete moods, and the relation of this word with the real is solid. This tangible solidity of clay grounds the uncertain situations and surprise, the mystery and the alchemy, of the ceramic process.
My every-day life is a fusion of sure and unsure circumstances, an infinite world of technical precision and mistakes, hard work and delusions, simplicity and happiness. For me, nothing is more lovely.
You live in a beautiful place, how much is your creativity influenced by environment?
I’m based in Bali, a wonderful tropical island ... we are naturally influenced by the beauty of the tropics. But I’m also product designer, expert in finding creative, tailored solutions for all interior decoration needs, so often I need to follow our client's request and mood. In this particular case I have to study and experiment with shapes, textures and colors, sometimes creatively far from the environment in where I live and work and far from my own idea of ceramic beauty and aesthetic. But I don’t feel frustrated, these custom made creations force me to do a lot of research and it challenges me to find the right balance between the client idea and my personal ceramic approach.
Do you listen to music when you work?
Not a lot …
What inspires you?
I find inspiration from studying and experimenting; trying to translate the stimuli around me, large and small, into objects that uncover the shapes, colours and expressions from within the world. I try to do this honestly and without discrimination.
I am fascinated by large architectural ceramic installations and how they transform a space and dictate how the space communicates. How do you come up with an idea for a particular installation?
I read the space, especially the inner and outer architectural volume. After defining the general concept of the installation (lighting, sculpture, wallpaper etc) I research images and basic ideas as brainwave, creating mood boards. When the mood boards are created (like in fashion) comes out naturally to pick up a specific curve of a shape or mix different profiles in order to generate a brand new object … when the gross idea is made, I try with computer rendering and with Photoshop to graphically mount the installation in the space.
This helps me to have the vision of the final result before having the installation installed. In doing so I avoid mistakes and I can better understand proportions and technical issues
Who are your favorite artists and why?
Considering art in general I love Pablo Picasso for the incredible constancy in his work and for his variations in aesthetics. As ceramic artist I like Takeshi Yasuda and Betty Woodman. … Both have an unbelievable freshness in approaching clay …
What would you say to someone just getting started in ceramics who asks you for advice?
I suggest accumulating skills … the world of ceramics is full of techniques, and technical know-how is the only key to decode the idea into an object … If you have a plan but you don’t have the expertise you are totally stuck and frustrated.
Also I suggest that you don’t feel affection for to the created ceramic objects but to just love the creative process …I recommend being flexible in experimenting shapes, color, textures and techniques … even far from your own aesthetic research and personal idea of how ceramic should be … It is the only way to learn new approaches and to discover the unexpected.
What’s your favorite cuss word?
I use bad language quite often … but I curse in Italian … better don’t say …
What do you do to relax?
To relax, I need to clean my mind, so, sometimes I throw small bowls … a lot … same shape, same throwing rhythm … sometimes I do sports … sometimes I just watch a movie or read a book.
What’s your favorite quote?
I have 2
“Creativity takes courage” Henry Matisse
“If you can dream it you can do it” Walt DisneyWow! Both great quotes, I will have to remember them. Thank you Marcello!


Rudy said...

Chris thanks for your work on this site especially the interview with Marcello. We never would have been able to appreciate this wonderful artist and his work without your efforts. I'll be checking his home page out again. Rudy

Chris McCormick said...

Thank you Rudy, I really appreciate it. The cool thing is I really enjoy doing this!

m a i n o said...

Chris, it's a pleasure to read this interview. I realise that you enjoy very much to do this kind of things. Go ahead.. Greetings from Argentina. Marcelo