Dellaclà/The art of self-representation

The eclectic Italian artist talks about her way of exploring human instability through the stillness of objects.

Starting point of your projects are often animals remains (such as bones, horns, skulls, etc.) that are manipulated and carved throught the use of different techniques. What does this creative process mean?

The precariousness of existence, the metamorphosis, the change. The shape and the usual content of the animals remains acquire diverse archaic meanings, even basing on the experience of who watches them.

The self-portrait is another constant of your works. It is in fact reproduced on a a dagger, a mirror, or on razor blades and skulls. What does this continuos act of representation expresses?

The choice of representing myself is only a way for depicting something that I know well. It is an example by means of which each one can watch themselves. It is like “stand up for it”. I believe that “using” another person is nearly as hiding ourselves, our ideas, thoughts, emotions, giving to others an image that it doesn’t belong to them.

Two of your projects are dedicated to the “concept” of love, but that is represented in an antithetical manner. In “Amori Impossibili” this feeling is tragicomic, irrational, based on impossible coexistences of nature. On the contrary in “Love Kills” it becomes passionate and destructive, symbolically described with lethal weapons. Can you tell us about that?

The word “love” includes so many conflicting and passionate emotions. For love, or in the name of love, we become mad, dramatic, ridicolous, melancholic, euphoric, comical. It doesn’t take much for losing the balance and moving from joy to pain. This two feelings represent both the projects, the metaphors of love but also the traps of love. And, even though they can be coscious choices or not, they however remain experiences always made for love or for the idea that everyone has about love.


In your solo exhibition of 2008 entitled Chiodi delle mie pene the theme of pain is developed using a series of different means of expression which symbolically materialize a path of acceptance and overcoming. Can you tell us about this experience?

The key word is awareness. I tried to show an universal condition of humanity. In particular I refer to accidental events of a symbolic “wound”, or to the risk under which the life and will of men are constantly submitted. We are thus forced to become conscious and aware of a situation that is sometimes unpleasant, but also real. The installation, from which the exhibition took its title, consisted of a platform with 500 kg of nails that occupied the entrance of the exhibition. In the center there was a metal sheet pillow with an engraved zinc nail, which represented fragments of memories and experiences. To see the rest of the exhibition, visitors were forced to walk on the platform covered with nails. Initially they were a little fearful, but immediately after taking the first step they felt an unexpected softness under their feet, due to the foam placed in the part under the nails. So what could cause pain and hardness, surprisingly aroused pleasure and softness.

What stimulates your creativity? And is there an artist who influenced you or  represents a reference point?

All that is creativity stimulates me: from people’s stories to music, from a book to a video. Besides, I think that in some way all artists influence us, the one you love and even the one you can’t stand. Actually, mainly these latter ones are those who determine the aspects that we would never think of seeing again or find  in our work.





Biography: Dellaclà was born in Viareggio in 1983, she lives and works between Massa-Carrara, Manarola and Marrakech. She graduated in Painting, and gained her Master’s Degree in Visual Arts and Performance at the Accademia di Belle Arti di Carrara. In her work she uses a vocabulary of signs-objects, focusing her attention on self-representation, to disguise the weight of violence with the lightness of self-irony. 




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