Punk is not dead – An Interview with artist Fernando Carpaneda
Fernando Carpaneda is an underground punk artist. He works with clay sculptures and paintings. His main theme is always the human being. His sculptures and paintings capture subjects that reflect the extraordinary side of the human element. Homeless people, punk rockers, pop stars, unknown artists and outcasts are recreated to the minutest detail in his sculptures and paintings.
KALTBLUT: Hey Fernando! We are so in love with your work- this is truly amazing. But, first thing first, what came first for you, painting or sculpture? Fernando: For sure sculpture. My sculptures are experimental works on material and feelings. I think I can explore new possibilities sculpting the human body and new forms. I worked for 15 years with assemblages before starting sculpting and through the assemblages I became a sculptor. It was a kind of a natural process.
KALTBLUT: What was your learning process for both disciplines? Fernando: I’m self-taught.
KALTBLUT: The human body is one of your main inspirations. What is it about it that you like so much? Fernando: Most of my sculptures are portraits of friends, ex-lovers, and random guys. I transform my sculptures into a kind of reliquary, where you can identify several references to the models; Phrases, poetry, human hair… I followed this path because I wanted to create works that have a consequential meaning to me and a strong connection with my models, and so, my past experiences are always present.
KALTBLUT: What is the message you want to get across to viewers of your work? Fernando: I wish my works can reach an audience that appreciates art regardless of being gay or straight. My goal with my art is also to show other sides within the GLBTQ culture and society in general. By that, to open the minds of the audience to other possibilities within gay and punk art. My works speak of freedom, of being what you are, without fear of assuming your ideas and ideals.
KALTBLUT: What was the starting point of your sculpture’s series Man as Object? Fernando: Man as Object represents the exploration of the male body as an object of consumption, as a piece of steak at the supermarket, and so it is also an expression of human sexuality, desire, and sexual freedom.
KALTBLUT: Do you think sex is always related to violence? Fernando: Well … this is a complicated question, because each person has a different view about sex. What can be violent to you, can be an act of loving and caring for me. Many people feel loved being beaten and having their faces slapped. Others feel violated in being caressed with delicate touches. I think some my new works imply violence because of the red color that refers to blood, but in fact, I see beyond the violence or the male body or the phalluses or the blood that are portrayed there. This is my vision as an artist and I always forget that the themes “male nude”, “blood”, or “penis” are still a taboo in our society. I did not create the penis, who created the penis was God. And, even Jesus Christ had one. That’s why I do not see anything wrong in portraying creations made by God. And I think blood, sex and violence is part of our culture. However, people’s minds make a direct link between the color red and the meat in my works with violence and something bad. I see blood as life, as the beginning of life and as conception.
KALTBLUT: There is certain denunciation in this series. What’s the main message behind it? Fernando: I think the male body is being exploited, sold and marketed as the just as the female body. I think people have lost their love for others and are more interested in discard able sex, than having a serious relationship. Sometimes I see clubs and pubs as a big supermarket.
KALTBLUT: Also I really want to ask you about your nudes painting, they are so beautiful. Most of your nudes seems to be sexually aroused. Why? Fernando: My process of creation comes from living with people. The coexistence with the person portrayed is a fundamental part of my work. I always liked to portray men and as I only have relationships with men I ended up portraying all my lovers. I find the man’s body much more interesting than the woman’s. I think this is the reason they are sexually aroused. The image of the naked woman to me is very banal.
KALTLBUT: Are you looking for certain characteristic when you search for model? Fernando: No. Most of my models are average naked guys. Some guys send me they`re pictures to be portrait and other are live models. I don’t have a specific type of guy to portray.
KALTBLUT: What is your ultimate goal? Fernando: I like to do works that do not fit into the circuit of contemporary art. I like to go against the standard imposed by art institutions. I try to escape the contemporary visual aesthetics and I prefer follow lines of works that escape this contemporary aesthetic.