As part our Grazie series we’re taking a closer look at the most exciting artists, designers, chefs and creatives inspired by Italian style. Francesco Vullo is a Sicily-born artist and illustrator who is known for creating colourful, clever and bold artworks that not only attract the eye but also engage the mind with a unique style and a willingness to look at things differently. We spoke to Francesco about his favourite artists, the beauty of Sicily and the importance of paying attention to details.
Hi Francesco. Can you tell us about yourself and what you do?
Hi! I am Francesco Vullo and I am an artist and an illustrator. I recently graduated from a design university in Milan. What I do is the thing I love the most and basically I communicate through images. Regardless of the medium used (digital art, painting, animation) my main goal is to express my vision of the world and the current events through my works, trying always to be contemporary and trying to provoke a reaction. Some of my works want to communicate a social signal, other works instead are the combination of elements that come from different and contrasted worlds. I like to look at common things from a different point of view, trying to turn them in something surrealistic.
What are the main inspirations behind your work?
For my works I have different inspirations. Current events are the most important, but Internet and personal relationships are good starting points too.
I have also different creative influences: classics like Magritte, Picasso, Andy Warhol or illustrators like Olimpia Zagnoli, Emiliano Ponzi, John Holcroft and other contemporary artists such as Banksy, Aiweiwei and Cleon Peterson.
When did you get introduced to art and illustration and what drove you to continue?
Since I was a child I've always loved drawing & painting and I've always tried to express my creativity with all the means available. The design institute I went to gave me a lot of stimulus, got me in touch with strong personalities of this world and I also learnt technical skills that help me everyday to express myself better. The thing that keeps me going is the curiosity that makes me always want to discover new things, but also the desire to make new experiences and find new ways to express myself.
Italy has a rich history of art and is regarded as a beautiful country. How does Italian art and your surroundings in Italy influence your work?
Living in Italy means living absorbed in beauty; the beauty of the landscape, of the architecture and of the masterpieces of art. Creativity needs this beauty and flourishes when surrounded by the beauty and the good taste of Italy.
Who are your favourite artists, designers and photographers?
As I said before, I like a lot of artists but my favorite is without any doubts Rene Magritte, Bruno Munari and Barbara Kruger for designers. And obviously Terry Richardson and Oliviero Toscani if we talk about photographers.
Tell us about some of your favourite places in Italy.
I don't even have to think to answer this question. I was born and grew up in Sicily, one of the most beautiful islands. It is a place with a long history, full of different cultures, incredible landscapes, astonishing beaches and last but not least food that makes the rest of the world envy us.
What do you think sets Italian style, art and design apart from the rest of the world?
Italy is the example to the world of style in every aspect. For me, the essence of the Italian style is the attention to detail, both in design and in the quality of the materials and working processes. Details that make the difference.
Italian style is research, innovation and experimentation but at the same time we can look to our priceless artistic and cultural heritage. Innovation and tradition are the basis of creativity in Italy.