The Rough Edges of Clay
By Lana Gentry
Brazilian born sculptor Fernando Carpandeda takes a moment to talk about the explicit nature of his work and where he believes he fits in to the mix of an ever-changing art world. Carpaneda’s content manages to raise some eyebrows and turn some heads, but he has no intentions of slowing down anytime soon. Here he explains his process and how he sees his own place as a candid, expressive soul.
What would you say separates you from most modern sculptors?
FC: "Attitude. My sculptures are connected directly to my lifestyle and my position as an artist within gay culture and within the punk movement. My sculptures are a public diary, where I represent the way I live, and the people that I have met at some moment of my life"
PG: Do you use live models or do you work from memory and/or photographs?
FC: "I use all three processes in the creation of my sculptures, because the majority of my portraits are of street people and junkies and many of them are not easy to meet again after the first contact."
PG: There’s a lot of miniature work in your portfolio. Do you also do full scale sculpts?
FC: "I specialize in miniatures. I have no intention of making full scale sculptures!"
PG: Do you find it difficult to find the proper outlets for showing your work given its controversial and sometimes explicit nature?
FC:: "Yes, it's a bit difficult to find galleries to show my work. Some of the galleries that say they work with Lowbrow or Underground Art refuse to show portraits of homosexuals and explicit sex between men. I think that the majority of the galleries that show Underground Art are false. The owners use the word 'Underground' to promote themselves. The majority of the galleries that call themselves Underground are part of the mainstream and get coverage in The New York Times like any other gallery that sells floral or still life paintings."
PG: Do you see yourself as being associated with any particular movement of art and if so why?
FC: "I support some art movements like Lowbrow Art and Pop Surrealism, but my work is too complex to be pigeon holed as a specific artistic style because the base of my work comes from a mixture of gay art with the punk movement and street culture. I consider myself an Anté Artist with no barriers and no limits within the art world."
PG: Were you always this explicit in your work? In other words was there ever a time when your creations were more mainstream?
FC: "Yes, I made a crucifix and a portrait of Jesus after meeting a priest on the Craiglist website. That priest took me to the parish house where he lives and we had sex there. As I told you before, my sculptures are my diary and the Jesus portrait is a mainstream work because is a very simple straight forward concept."
PG: What do you want the viewer to come away with after seeing your work?
FC: "I make my work for myself. I'm not interested in people's opinions, whether they are negative or positive. For me it doesn't matter if they like it or not. I'm happy sculpting my diary and living in my own little world."
What’s in the future for you in the way of upcoming shows and events?
FC: "I have an solo exhibition in New York this June called 'Queer Punk', which will be organized by The Leslie/Lohman Gay Art Foundation and by The Kymara Gallery. The exhibition shows various phases of my work in gay and punk culture. I'm also launching the book 'Queer Punk' featuring my new work and will be collaborating on video work with the musician Milo Rock."
Punk Globe would like to thank Lana Gentry. Kymara Gallery and the talented Fernando Carpaneda for the interview...
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