Expat Artist in Berlin: Michele Carloni

Expat Artist in Berlin: Michele Carloni

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Berlin has plenty of galleries, exhibitions, cultural events and the chances of meeting other artists are high says Italian illustrator Michele.

Name: Michele
Nationality: Italian
City of residence: Berlin
Reason for moving to Germany: a change of life, learning German and ..to run away from the Dutch rain.
Website: www.fantisola.com

Can you describe what you wish to communicate through your art work?
I like to make humoristic illustrations, drawings for children, comic strips and cartoons. I am not sure myself what that can communicate, but there is something we lose growing adults and that we miss sometimes without realizing; the serenity of a magic world not yet affected by troubles, disappointments and anxiety.

2. Which medium do you work in?
I use all mediums, although I found traditional ones like ink, watercolours and oil are more interesting and genuine. However, new computerised techniques open a lot of possibilities and combining tradition with modernity can give outstanding results. In 3d animation programs, for example, you can integrate hand drawing and paintings and transform a sketch in something animated.

How has living abroad influenced your work as an artist?
Abroad I’ve found more possibilities to gather information, develop skills and get answers in the working environment. Also to arrange workshops or exhibitions, at least in the countries I have been living, is relatively easy.

Image: Michele Carloni @ fantisola.com

 Poster from the Ecologiacal poster series - mixed technique

Which famous local artists inspire you?
I don't have any particular local artists in mind as I like so many from all over the world and throughout art history.

Which up and coming local artists do you find worth mentioning?

As I said I do not have a particular artist I like above another, but I do feel more attraction for representational painters, visual artists, illustrators and digital artists than other types. Conceptual art can be abused nowadays and is often disappointing.

Image: Michele Carloni @ fantisola.com
Image from the childrenbook project "Bat's life" - mixed technique

How easy or difficult is it to mix with the local artistic community?
Berlin has plenty of galleries, exhibitions, cultural events and the chances of meeting other artists are high.

Can you offer some advice to people wishing to break into the local art scene?

I haven't been here long enough to give advice, but I can certainly say that all that may be true in Germany about German stereotypes does not apply to Berlin. It is an 'island' in Germany where, unlike the rest of the country, 'everything' is still possible.

Image: Michele Carloni @ fantisola.com
Cat: watercolor

What kind of financial support is available for artists working in your country of residence?
 That is something complicated and constantly changing. For a long time here in Germany, and especially in Berlin, there was a government policy which supported artists, sometimes offering salaries and ateliers. Now things seem to have changed  for the worse, although to my knowledge, the situation is still better than in other countries.

How would you describe the art scene in your current country of residence; for instance is it thriving or on the wane?
It is certainly thriving in Berlin, a city which attracts artists from all over the world for its “unruly” atmosphere, art scene and  relatively high quality of life.  

Mouse: mixed technique

Joining your voice to Expatica's Expat Artist series

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