Interview with Domitilla Biondi, Carved Paper Poetry Artist

Interview with Domitilla Biondi, Carved Paper Poetry Artist - Nothing Matters

Having a passion for the refined detailing of paper carving, Italian artist Domitilla Biondi creates these delicate and uniquely beautiful pieces inspired by the serenity and spiritual awareness she has come to know over the past year. They each possess their own story, their poetic tale carved into ivory paper, only leaving reliefs of the shadows cast by the lights interaction from where blade once was. Without further adieu, please enjoy this lovely look into the background of Domitilla Biondi.

Tell us a little more about your background – what path led you to what you are doing now?
I have been in Interaction Design from 1996 and in graphic design from 2005. I led my own Studio in Milan from 2003 to 2015, but in 2011 I started to feel uncomfortable in that job, suffering the many hours in front of the monitor and feeling that what I could learn from that experience I already did so far. So more or less, this is the point when I began dedicating the time to deepen awareness of myself, reading a lot and healing my health problems due to intolerance to many foods and other things. I ended up falling in love with the harmonic sound frequencies of tibetan singing bowls, and this is how my artistic path began.

It was several years that I was in search of how to express my creativity, and I really felt I needed to be back to utilizing my hands, but every time I tried with painting or drawing I got stuck because my mind started to “think professionally”.

Interview with Domitilla Biondi, Carved Paper Poetry Artist - Rumi Remixed

In August 2013 I was in London and I visited Ellen Gallagher’s solo exhibition at the Tate: her last series of works were carved paper, with whom she created some sorts of dreamlike fish and seaweeds, and this concept of white on white hit me like a thunderbird because it became my solution. So I begun testing and trying different kinds of watercolor papers and blades and dedicated the first two years creating large pieces that represented birds. But in 2014, after becoming more flexible, I started to create smaller pieces with more abstract themes and I felt the technique began to flow and the series of «Remixed Poets» spread. I also found that small pieces were easier to photograph, so I started to publish them on Pinterest.

Interview with Domitilla Biondi, Carved Paper Poetry Artist - Quasimodo Remixed

At that time I wasn’t aware of the path that I began, so my carving activity was very sporadic and this went on until March 2016 when, during a process of deep personal healing, I understood the cruciality of creative expression and become aware of dedicating to it full time. I started creating the website and declaring the change of my job activity and … everything started to flow and here I am.

“I do not cut off and compose with glue; I simply carve in real time with a blade only, white on white.

I let the silence invades me and then it happens that visual poetry emerges. At the end, it often happens that I pick few phrases from some poet’s poem, like a sort of haiku.” – Domitilla Biondi

Interview with Domitilla Biondi, Carved Paper Poetry Artist - Nothing Matters

Your works are so beautiful and delicate and are comprised of literally carvings into paper, how did you come upon this as your technique?
The absolute turning point came in June 2016, while I was carving Japanese fish for the exhibition Japan My Love… I felt that my hands were moving so easily that I asked to myself: “what if I stop thinking and simply let this inspiration start forming on its own?” From there, my inspiration for the abstract series «N o T h i n g M a t t e r s» begun, and I understood the difference between mastering a technique and being an “artist”, in the significance that ancients cultures gave to this: being in the presence of your inner Self, in the unicity of the moment. In fact, the etymology of the word “art” comes from Armenian languages’s root “ar-“ which means “fit together, join”… and this is exactly what happens now when I start carving: I put myself in the state of offering and empty my ego inside, putting aside all expectations, and this makes it possible have a flow of special energy that manifests the subconscious in this incredible Beauty of miniatures, which I wouldn’t be able to replicate even if I’d want it! Every piece it’s a surprise for myself first, ha ha ha.

Interview with Domitilla Biondi, Carved Paper Poetry Artist

This artistic path has become the everyday practice of a path of self knowledge, and that’s all I can say about it, because there is no more design or studying behind it but simply offering and letting go, and being in the good company of my inner self.

The constant practice of self awareness and harmonic sound activities highly influence the quality of the carving results… I understood that the quality of the vibrations that our body emanates (bio-energies influenced by food, body activities and sports, breathing) contributes to make the difference in every aspect of our everyday life. The quality of the output of my artworks are the visible evidence of the state of my physical state of being.
You can see the presence of harmonic frequencies into the spirals which are the constant element of every inspired composition, from its miniatures to the entire composed artwork. I think that carving is only another manner to play harmonic sound, and I reckon this is the secret of the Beauty my artworks express: they contain harmonic paths, made visible by the paper.

Interview with Domitilla Biondi, Carved Paper Poetry Artist - Nothing Matters

What have been some favorite recent projects/clients/collaborations and why?
I’ve begun to fully dedicate to turn this talent into a job only from June, but few good occasions already started to manifest: a beautiful image representing an harmonic spiral has been chosen as background of the luxury slipcase of the famous Japanese Marie Kondo’s books, that will be released for Christmas festivities. Another, which is on the deal, has to do with huge prints.. but it’s premature talking about it.

Interview with Domitilla Biondi, Carved Paper Poetry Artist - Kondo Box

If you could pick any character from any book, who would you be and why?

Definitely Hayao Miyazaki’s Nausicaä of the Valley of wind.
All his characters resonate with principles of Mother Nature and empathy, that have thought me a lot, but Nausicaä has the luck to fly, which is the favorite wish I’d express if I could.

Interview with Domitilla Biondi, Carved Paper Poetry Artist - Kingyo Series

Are you involved in any upcoming shows or events? If so, where and when?
I’m going to exhibit the 17th of November 2016 in Milan (Italy), in the occasion of the event Japan My Love featuring 10 contemporary emerging Japanese artists in Italy, and together with them, a few Italians whose poetic sensibilities resonate with Japanese culture. For this occasion I have prepared figurative large pieces of Japanese fishes («Kingyo» series) and «Wisteria» in bloom, plus a composed artwork of 9 pieces of «Visual Haiku», whose remixed poems born from the pages of a narrative book of female Japanese writers (italian title: Le rose del Giappone).

In February I’ve been welcomed to showcase my work at Collect Open, a section of the fair Collect 2017, organized by the Craft Council at the Saatchi Gallery in London. @CraftsCouncilUK for Facebook and Twitter, @CraftsCouncil for Instagram and use #Collect )

Is there something you are currently working on, or are excited about starting that you can share with our readers?
I’m about to launch a series of luxury greeting cards, called «I WISH YOU», a series of 4 subjects, each one resonating with one from the four elements (air, water, fire and soil) of Nature inside the Human Being. They are made in a series, but every piece is different because they are all handmade.

Interview with Domitilla Biondi, Carved Paper Poetry Artist - Gift Card I Wish Set

I’m studying a collection of objects that investigate new values of nowadays spirituality themes. But cannot spoil it.. I hope I’ll manage to complete it to introduce it at Collect Open. Part of this, are the «Magnifico» series rounded large pieces. At the moment I’m struggling with the creation of a rounded frame.

What can we expect from your future works?
I wish I knew! Probably sharing more beauty through my happiness, always. :-)

What is your dream creative project?
I actually haven’t thought about it… but I reckon that probably I am already on it, even if I can’t still see it.
Definitely that of creating something that has the gift to inspire others to improve him/herself.

Interview with Domitilla Biondi, Carved Paper Poetry Artist - Kingyo Series

What does a typical day of work involve for you?
I dedicate at least one hour to self awareness activities (breathing, yoga, experiencing sound, etc); I carve for at least an hour; I work a lot on the additions (frames, pictures, retouching, website, graphic design, etc); sometimes I work on last dragging of my previous User Experience Designer job or to my parallel passion of promoting sound healing (; I try to see at least a friend/family per day… I try to fully live things that produce happiness in myself so that I can pass those frequencies into my artworks.

Is there anymore information you would like to share with our viewers?
When I was in search of my true self, I felt inside the intention to help through a nonprofit organization that I joined parallel to this artistic adventure, and I reckon my path is so happily facilitated mainly for this reason.
So part of the earnings from every sale goes to Butterflies of Light.

When I was struggling in my personal healing process, I suddenly could see that I transformed my job into my everyday life, while, instead, it should be living Life, the real job that everyone must pursue.

I then stopped every certainty I made up of my future and wrote down a conscious list of the talents I brought from childhood and began directing my everyday energies to those activities, so that could express myself, and not care about the reasons of why/when/how anymore… After a while I noticed that everything around me became easier, nourishing and lighter even, to approach. Life has become an everyday surprise of learning, and my confidence in being part of a magnificent Unity, which involves everybody, grows together to opportunities that providence brings into my life.

Interview with Domitilla Biondi, Carved Paper Poetry Artist - Rumi Remixed

From June 2016 every artwork is an opportunity to offer one of my talents to the World to make it a better place, and I hope my contribution of touching souls through the poetry of Beauty will pigeon-holes me into this Life.
Thanks to everyone that encourages my path, with all my heart.

Thank you Domitilla for taking the time to answer our questions and share your work with us! To our viewers, be sure to post below with your thoughts and if you know of any artists that work in the realm of paper that you would like to be interviewed be sure to shoot us an e-mail.

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