Murze is delighted to present an interview with artist Leopoldo D'Angelo (Dangiuz)
Tell us a bit about yourself, your background and your work.
Alright! Here we go. I am Dangiuz! Or, well... My real name is Leopoldo D'Angelo. I was born in Turin (Italy), on 1995, July the 11th. I live between Turin and Milan, sometimes I spend more time in one city, sometimes more time in the other one, depending on how things go. Recently I've been in Turin a lot, due to the pandemic and all that concerns. I went to Bodoni-Paravia High School, which is a school for graphic designers and photographers. There, I've got my Diploma and I started moving my first steps in the working field, collaborating with some local studios.
After a while I also did some standard desk job, logistics and such, but in August 2018 I fell in love (again!) with arts, graphics, and realised I wanted to pursue this career, but this time in a different way. I discovered 3D arts and I instantly realised how much of a powerful tool it could be if used correctly, and even though I'm still learning, I like to express my art and my visions using those tools.
How would you describe your artwork?
If we're talking genres, I think most of my artworks can be defined as "Sci-Fi / Futuristic / Fantasy". These genres though have a lot of sub-cultures, and these sub-cultures have sub-cultures themselves, so it gets more and more detailed when we dig deeper into it! Most of my artworks fall into the "Cyberpunk" category, which is, according to Reddit, "A genre of science fiction and a lawless subculture in an oppressive society dominated by computer technology and big corporations''. So I think this says a lot about my artworks! Where did you start as a digital artist? Did you explore other forms of art first?
Artistically, I started being Dangiuz in August 2018. But I started nowhere, just like anybody who tries something for the first time! I didn't really try any kind of "art" before, but let's say I had a sort of "advantage" since I learnt to use some of the tools I'm using right now while working as a Graphic Designer. Everything is different though, Art doesn't really have any universal rule or concept that you can apply and succeed all the times like it may happen in the Graphic Design field.
How has the pandemic affected you, your artwork and day to day?
The pandemic hasn't really affected me too much; it did, in a way that I couldn't go outside, see friends, people and so on. I had to go back to Turin and stay home for the time being. But this is nothing compared to the amount of people that lost their jobs. I am lucky because for me it didn't change much working-wise, I was still able to work remotely, communicating with my colleagues and so on.
What artists of the past or present have inspired you?
Regarding past artists, Pablo Picasso and Vincent Van Gogh are two of my all-time favourite painters. Speaking of today, probably Beeple Crap (Mike Winkelmann), and Ash Thorp are the artists that inspire me the most. Also Syd Mead, may he rest in peace.
What subject matters interest you? What are some of the stories behind your work?
As you may have noticed, I'm really interested in dystopia, technology, the way humans interact with it and so on. I'm really obsessed with the future and the way we can use technology or vice-versa, technology might even use us. Think about it: we are already technology slaves, we keep our phones in our hands for most part of the day... I wonder what it will look like in 100 years! There is no particular story behind my work, it's just that most of the times I start creating something while having a certain idea in mind and then I end up doing completely different things; but I spoke to some other artists and they told me it's the same for them. I guess inspiration works that way! Tell us about your working process, what tools or software do you use to create your art?
If we're talking tools, I mostly use Cinema 4D and Octane Render. Trying to explain it for non-experts, basically the first one is what you use to "create stuff", and the second one is what you use to "visualize them". So they work together, what you make in the first one, you visualize it in the second one. Then, if I made a static image, I post-produce (...basically I fix small mistakes and improve the whole thing hahaha) in Photoshop. There is no particular working process, I just sit there, try to get a rough idea and start making something... Till the idea becomes real more and more and... Well, I made something! What motivates you as an artist? Is it curiosity, the search for beauty or meaning?
This is a really nice question! I think all of them really. Curiosity because it's always good to learn new things and discover stuff that you don't know. Beauty because everyone likes beauty. Aesthetically pleasing works are always a winner, even if they don't necessarily carry an important message or meaning. However, meaning is super-important as well. Communicating something is vital as an artist, and if I can manage to somewhat "change" somebody else's view or to communicate something through an Artwork, well I'm glad I did! Also the message is personal... What I may want to communicate is not necessarily what other people will get, and I'm totally fine with it. Art is subjective.