We have published two hidden works of yours; now tell us what they mean..

The two works we have published on Talents are sculptures belonging to the "shoes" series. They're the latest, the ones I'm still working on at the moment. I'm very fond of shoes because they have helped me to present very serious subjects in a funny, ironic and original way. Shoes are very revealing and adaptable to the mood I want to describe. Revealing, because if you just watch them without manipulations, you can understand a lot of things. For instance: if the owner is a male or a female, young or elderly, bizarre or serious, are doing sports or relaxing….Adaptable, because I can modify them, cut them, match them, put them in particular places and, with an appropriate title, make them speak.

The first work to appear on Talents was “Out of Place”. The reference is to our way of reasoning, which sensible people seem to have completely lost today.
We have lost our sense of proportion and our own dimension. We are overconfident and keep a frenzied pace to accumulate goods and achieve fleeting and/or useless goals, thus fuelling resentment, envy, selfishness, careerism, egocentrism, and so on, and as a result we find ourselves knackered, stressed, angry, depressed, unhappy.
“Out of place” was my first couple of “shoe/sculpture”. One of the two sculptures published on Talents is painted black and with a mouth on a side. The other is grey with a nose on a side.
The idea to use a shoe derived from the literal translation of the Italian idiomatic expression “to reason with one's feet”, which translates "to talk nonsense". A shoe was technically more suitable than our feet to achieve my purpose, so I adapted it as a symbolic container where to put the human brain that, out of its natural place, cannot but be incoherent and create chaos.
Besides manipulated and painted real shoes, the materials I used are cement and a plastic sheet showing a brain that first I drew in pencil and then I printed.

The other sculpture published on this magazine is "I can't make it". It's not easy to try and make people smile while presenting a serious theme such as the deep uneasiness that people feel when they are so depressed that they just can't recover and end up plunging into despair.
Whoever watches knows that the person who is sinking into despair is sympathized with, and at the same time one smiles about the curious idea of the construction of the work. This is what I wanted to achieve: to communicate that I know how one feels in some particularly bad moments, but also give rise to a smile, and everybody knows that a smile may be very powerful.

Plans for the future?

I’m working a lot on these new works/shoes. I’m manipulating, cutting, swelling, filling and painting them in various ways, thus discovering that each particular shape of shoes can express something different.
The works that are in the pipeline will be published on my personal site and I hope I can exhibit them in an exhibition in the near future.
...My shoes will go very far...

[Part of interview published on Art Review “TALENTS” - Rome - December 2009 n. 10 - Editor: Emilio Fabri]


Crazy runnings

Watchino: - Well, Have you seen?

Twistino: - What?

W: - The white bees of North-West left off their genetic memory!

T: - So, what? The times are changing! Never heard about evolution? About new technologies? About science?

W: - Yes, ok, but… You see, they have thrown away thousands of years of experience and now they make old mistakes as if they were new! And they also make new ones! Without memory they only think about the present and can’t foresee and produce anything good for the future.

T: - Eh! Future, future! What do you know about the future? Just look as they move and communicate quickly! Their world has become little, well-known and accessible, they can do things that were unconceivable in the past! It’s wonderful!

W: - Yes, ok, but…they’re little natural beings, and nature, with its perfect rhythm, has always been their guide! Now they only follow the instructions included in the tools that they have invented and I only see little bees that run, crash, trample, elbow, make mistakes, get lost or angry, quarrel, take useless things, get tired, they’re inconclusive, they’re frustrated and cause damages…

T: - Don't exaggerate! Let’s say they’re making experience. They have thrown away old conditionings that hindered their progress and now they’re adapting!

W: - Yes, ok, but…of course, there were a lot of things it was correct to throw away, but, it was important to replace them with better ones! Now they have no philosophy of life. Now there is a big hole in their brain and their heart, and they have neither sense nor harmony. I keep watching them, astonished and sceptical. Can you see it? The whole colony, in fact any of them, is as if they were broken in two pieces. The technological and scientific half always runs ahead, faster and faster, ignoring the other half, the philosophical and natural one, which instead stumbles and always falls behind. And this causes derangement and unhappiness.

T: - Not true! Not true!...Well...but... in fact...

Marina Profumo


Sculpture because:

I’m an Italian painter and sculptress and I would like to introduce you to my latest art works.

Until recently, most of my output was made up of oil on canvas painting, but in the last two years I focused on sculptures. I worked alone for years, passing from periods of introspection to meditation, and finally to the analysis of the world surrounding me. My vision has slowly changed and I focus on the behaviour of modern man and its effects.

The analysis of reality led me to another dimension. In my mind the subjects were too realistic to be painted, they had to have a body, a real shape. Therefore, in 2007 I began to make sculptures assembling concrete, ropes, paper, wire netting, printed plastic sheets and paint.

The themes I deal with concern man's bad behaviour. I feel the problem of mankind's bad use of its own mind very strongly and very deeply.

Modern communication systems enable us to learn so many events of human folly that it seems nothing else surrounds us.

Madness is not only the sad disease we all know. There is a hidden madness in “normal” people that is often worse.

Many people think they are sane but they are overwhelmed by jealousy, hatred, envy, nastiness, superstition/religion, and/or are thirsty for power and greed, which all hinder positive thoughts and sensible actions.

Wherever you look, you can find consequences of the above. Wherever you look, you can find the trail of pain it originates.

Is there a solution to all this? Probably not. Is a better future possible? It’s too optimistic and difficult to say: history has taught us! Centuries ago there were the same problems, such as the wickedness of man and things have not changed now. It seems that our instinct has not developed as quickly as progress.

Now the world has become smaller, information is exchanged faster, civilization seems to improve, but our soul is still primitive.

Modern western masses have given up old habits, old teachings, old religious principles. This may be positive, but we have not yet considered finding a new philosophy, a global, right and lay philosophy of life.

This failure leads us to search for our individual happiness without realizing what happiness really is, where and how to find it, and this may destroy us. I could speak for hours and hours but I have to stop now! In any case, in these few lines I hope I have been able to explain to you the ideas that led me to make my works, which are imbued with all my thoughts, my passion and my irony.

Marina Profumo


The research of positivity

One of the aspects of art is to make statements about the facts of life, its material and psychological implications, and show its harshness and drama.

It is a choice, a path, a way of reasoning that an artist presents to the world to cause awareness in it.

Art may deal with a theme in many different ways by using the most disparate and personal styles and means.

This statement should make people think, stir up their minds, interest them and arouse a feeling in them.

Yet, in order for this feeling not to turn to discouragement and for a void sense of helplessness to follow awareness, it is important to be able to discern the possibility to change, or better, to improve.

That is why it is very important for me to be able to convey something that may arouse a positive feeling. The canvas has to draw and hold the onlooker’s attention to make him/her float in a new dimension, which is far from reality and where one manages to dream, hope and believe that there is not only the drama of the present time, where one can find one’s own optimistic root to cultivate and watch while it grows.

This is where I focused my attention in the last few years. I removed all the clear-cut subjects, symbols, and details from my paintings with the aim to make room for a broader, clearer and simpler space, where colour and light are in the foreground and where our eye is not busy making out objects, but can rather work as a door filtering positive sensations.

It has been a challenge, a competition with myself and my much more explicit previous works.

Even though this maturing process is the continuation of my earlier artistic vision, there has been a change of direction anyway. I wanted to present a different aspect of the same trip by adopting new methods.

As I realized I was facing a new approach to painting, I wondered, “Will I be able to convey the message I have inside by changing the means at my disposal? Will I be able to create an atmosphere that might draw the people’s attention, keep them on the same wavelength as mine and make them understand my viewpoint?”

I decidedly and bravely called myself in question again, but it was worth running the risk because I finally obtained the positive results I was looking for. This gives me new strength and enthusiasm, and urges me to go on searching and displaying what is positive.

Marina Profumo


It's hard

After madly pressing the accelerator of our evolution,
we progressed in leaps and bounds
without having either the time or cleverness
to find the right philosophy of live.

After throwing away the belt
it’s hard to make our children fly high
sure, free and happy,
without opening the cage.

After throwing away the stick
it’s hard to get silence from the pupils,
if you haven’t got any seeds and the right tools in your sack
to spark interest and curiosity.

After hanging tyranny by the feet,
it’s hard to make a country fly high
as far as justice, rigour and solidarity are concerned
if nobody blows the warm wind of the honesty.

After leaving the utopia of organized faith,
it’s hard to recognize one’s own soul
and, when we are lonely,
to be able to warm it and feed it creating love and joy.

It’ hard to stop while running,
but perhaps it is worth making a pause and get ready because
It’s hard to run along the treacherous and smooth tracks of future
wearing hobnail shoes that were only suitable to our old dirt paths.

Marina Profumo



… and it’s not enough to have your heart full of love to be able to pass on love
it’s not enough to have good intentions to be able to pass on good teaching,
It’s not enough to have lived a little more to be able to pass on the truth that you already have.

…and it’s not enough to have degrees, diplomas, specializations, higher education…

Would it be enough to possess all the wisdom one can get after living ten or more real lives in order to get this ability?

Wrong words, wrong actions, wrong silences…

…and meanwhile you feel inadequacy, impotence, anger, sadness.
Love goes on but blurs if it isn’t supplied by happiness, and, in the end,
even if you still love, frustrated, you leave.

Marina Profumo