When I was in high school I remember you as a pretty famous snowboarder.
I follow your career, you became a talented fashion photographer and now even an amazing artist.
A lot of people thinks that if you came from a small city you have to move in a bigger one to grow and become somebody.
Desperate: What’s your story?
Davide Lantermoz: Yes, for some years I had been a professional snowboarder and I believe this got me closer somehow to art. Freestyle snowboarding has always been permeated with art: from boards’ artworks to videos’ music, moreover I personally was backed by Volcom and Capita, two brands whose art orientation is a flagship. All this allowed me to travel and open my mind, I was always in contact with photographers and video makers, and this made me get closer to photography, while regarding drawing I always used to draw since I was a child. I am from a little village on the mountains, my house is 50 meters away from the resort’s lift, a tiny paradise where I often come back to have some moments of total isolation which lets me think of both my works and myself too. I would say it is not necessary relocating permanently to a big city to reach a personal artistic growth, on the contrary I think that living in a metropolis you can risk a strong homogenisation, having no time to stop and think. Obviously you need to step on to big cities and possibly publish your works because your audience is wider and more prepared, and this also gets the debate more interesting.
D: Why fashion photography? I mean, you were pretty good in winter landscapes too.
DL: Fashion photography has been my first escape from the “form”. At the beginning I used to shoot snowboarding pictures, for some Italian magazines too, but the fact of being completely bound to report, to document or record the sport action of the athlete... well, that made me feel completely tied. In fashion photography I reckoned a way to escape from that “form-sports-reportage”.
D: It’s pretty clear that Jurgen Teller is one of your biggest inspiration, who else fascinates you?
DL: Well, I was well aware that Juergen’s pictures were the only fashion photos that really stroke me. I loved the motion that was present in his pics, how the shots were reshaped, how the washed out whites linked so well with the refined colours, how they were real in their way, I liked that kind of making fashion photos, not the actual fashion photography. All this, getting back to my answer to your question No.2, made me understand that I had to step up to the second degree of emancipation to create images/visions that transcend reality, using painting and painting on photographic images. During my personal journey, I found out and studied many characters, and amongst them I would like to mention CoBra group and Asger Jorn, the Nuclear movement of Enrico Baj and Sergio Dangelo Julian Schnabel and Cy Twombly, up to the Italians Piero Manzoni, Giuseppe Chiari, Pino Pascali, Schifano... and many others.
D: Why do you think bondage excites men? Why, in your art, you decide to delete bodies?
DL: Let’s say that I’ve never considered Bondage or Japanese Kimbaku in that sense. I happened to work on images having this kind of art because female body tied to ropes was the thing closer to my idea of formal constraint, an obstacle to movement and velocity. In this sense my colour signs transfigured these images into other, they set them free. The erotic meaning is only the first level of reading. This kind of approach was also important to the work I exhibited during past September at the Wish-Less Gallery in Tokyo, under the title “17 Tokyo Postcards”, where as a form to break I used Japanese Manga comics and their stereotyped signs, set them free with my colours and “Fauves” signs.
D: What’s there behind your colors?
DL: Maybe, honestly, I am. I believe I use colours in a very “musical” way, when in front of a white surface and composing a melody made, in fact, of sounds&colours. Colours are always on the move, each colour has a life on its own, it runs towards the spectator or away from him towards the painting’s depth, each colour has its own higher or deeper intensity. Options are infinite and surprisingly sometimes the painting’s power disregards depiction or illustration - that is right what I am searching for: colours and pictorial actions can drag you down into “other” worlds, as it often happens with classical music.
D: I’ve never been to Tokyo, tell me 4 things you like and 4 things you hate about it.
DL: Tokyo is amazing, hard to describe or to define - probably one should live years and years there before actually getting into the meaning of its different cultures. Having said that, I would try to set a list:
I like: Sumo and fighters' physiological expressivity / femininity / colours saturation / art products’ warehouses.
I don’t like: Form / hidden hostility towards the “other” / animals’ entrails as food / language (only because I am not able to speak Japanese)
D: Can you promise here and now that you’re gonna shoot an editorial for us?