Since I was a child I have always been fascinated by the countless illustrations of the “Corriere dei Piccoli” by Walter Molino’s caricatures and by the Ex libris, an extraordinary miniature. I have known them since my childhood, when I used to look through my grandfather’s books in the attic or in his library in Alberobello. Here there were all kinds of objects but, above all, ancient books of all sizes with precious and rare binding on canvas with a golden title (which I still jealously preserve today). It is in one of these volumes extracted from the library and subtracted from the company of the other books that I met for the first time an Ex libris. (I remember the phrase “Hic liber est meus” exclusively aimed at returning the book). I realized that the small, fine-grained piece of paper pasted on the reference page of the book, that I found in the other volumes, was a printed reproduction of a precious piece of paper, with a fine drawing, multiplied as many times as the number of books owned by my grandfather. It carried a precise design, a “Libra” symbol of equity and the family motto, corresponding to the linear and soft style of Art Nouveau. I realized that the slightly ivory sheet of laid paper told the story of a book belonging to a family of books, and therefore, to a family of people. The choice of the Artistic High School and then of the Academy of Fine Arts in the beautiful, fascinating and unique city of Lecce was determined by a natural attraction for art and the search for how it is possible to create matrices that can multiply images. And here is the alchemical experience of “etching” whose main role is played by the mordants and etches on the amorphous metal plate.
But the Matrix must be carefully prepared in order to withstand the violent action of the mordant. This is the most fascinating moment, the most delicate and dangerous one of the entire Etching, that is when the plate modified in its original structure generates images that materialize themselves in dots, hatches, crossings – strong or delicate contrasts – in the articulated game between black and white.
Matrix and acid enter into synergy and contrast in a sort of struggle for the supremacy of the sign. That sign that was not there before is now present, becomes a sort of witness and interpreter of culture, history and life of every man in every country. Moving to Rome in the late 1980s, I regained my artistic vocation. I participated in national and international Exlibris competitions and I had the opportunity to tell, interpret and reveal my secrets. Since then over the years my publications appeared on catalogues, then I have received awards, honourable mentions or reports for originality and merit.
Preise und Ehrenvolle Erwähnungen 2014 to 2019
The Haunted Wood 2014 edition theme “Gabriele D’Annunzio” ■ Special mention 1st classified Title “Impressioni Pugliesi” from Gabriele D’Annunzio’s travel diary in Puglia.
International Exlibris Competition: “Aldo Manuzio from paper to paperback”. ■ The work was considered worthy of reporting.
The Haunted Wood 2016 edition Theme “Alice in Wonderland” ■ Reported by the Jury Title “Waking up with light feet discovering that it had been a dream”
Exlibris 1st Edition 2016 ENGRAVING WORKSHOPS Abbey of San Nilo from Grottaferrata ■ Finalist artist – classification order 6th Title “Private Renaissance” taken from the book by Maria Bellonci
The Haunted Wood 2017 edition Theme “The Jungle Book”
■ Special Jury Award Title “The moonlight at the entrance to the den was darkened: the large square head and shoulders of Shen Khan had slipped into the entrance.” I want my prey ” Raksha: “The man-cub is mine!”
Mestre Alberto Benvenuti Award Fourth edition 2017 ■ M.P. 4th prize Title “Christmas Musicians”
Stadtmuseum. MOSBACH 2017 Exlibris Germany ■ 2nd prize Title “Metamorphosis”
Biennial of Contemporary Graphics Diego Donati award V Perugia edition 5 December 2018 ■ Certificate of merit Title “Progress Geometries”
International Exhibition Exlibris “Signature” 2018 Galerija Meander Apatin -Serbia- ■ First Prize “Dreams” Title Armistice 1918 “An unknown life appeared before one’s eyes: the inexplicable condemnation”
DEG congress in Wetzlar 2019 Germany ■ Third prize P.F. Merry Christmas from Alberobello Title “Invitation to Silence”
IX International Biennale of Exlibris CONTRATALLA 2019 Tarragona –Spain ■ Honorable Mention Title “The wine”
Exlibris In Fabula 2nd edition 2018 OFFICINE INCISORIE ■ First classified Title “The wine” inspired by the Apulian traditional collection of fairy tales “Tell me a story” by Dino Angelini