At Random: Francesco Balzano
As part of our series on the artists and designers behind Spazio Nobile’s The Random Collection, we asked Balzano about his thoughts on collecting the unique
How does the fact that these pieces are unique in a series impact your work?
The Change Tray is a tribute to the iconic Casa Malaparte in Capri, which was immortalised in Jean-Luc Godard’s Contempt and by master photographer François Halard. This project links my whole childhood, when we would travel to Capri as a family; every summer we would pass by the mythical cliff house of writer and director Curzio Malaparte. It is an artists’ residence now, and a place where many famous artists have stayed.
To me, this house almost embodies the essence of architecture. Part of the roof is a staircase that goes up to the sky. I translated that into a small sculptural item, an homage to the villa that can be displayed everywhere to keep documents or some precious thing.
How do you think design is evolving nowadays, towards the field of contemporary art?
To me, design and art have never been different things: [they’re both] utility, retranscription of feelings, a drawing process, materiality, light and colour.
How are both interacting? Why do we have those two words, fine arts versus visual arts, that have been separated? Do you think they should interact more?
Everything is design and everything is design when there’s emotion.
Is functionality an important consideration in your process?
My work has a timeless perception of functionality, in the minimal and basic aspects. I always think of icons.
How do you perceive your work both as a part of The Random Collection and as part of your overall production?
The Random Collection was the opportunity to talk about a very special place to me, a designer piece of art. This house made me wish I could become a designer.
Francesco Balzano’s Curzio Rosso is part of The Random Collection, celebrating the 10-year anniversary of TL Magazine. Launched at Art Brussels (19-22 April), it is always available at the Spazio Nobile Gallery in Brussels and will be at an upcoming exhibition at the Biennale Interieur in Kortrijk from October 18-22.