“What I paint is part of what I am - it’s my interpretation of the world and my way of experiencing reality.”
Italian artist Ian Bertolucci is a performer, designer, photographer, painter, illustrator, and visual artist. Their hyper-realistic oil paintings are characterized by strong contrasts and an uncanny attention to detail. Drawing inspiration from the constructed beauty and drama of old Hollywood as well as personal experiences, the artist uses their work to showcase their interpretation of the world; it offers a reflection on social dynamics as well as issues concerning gender and gives life to their imagination.
In 2013, Bertolucci graduated from the Stagio Stagi Art Institute in goldsmith and design. They then enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts of Carrara to pursue Visual Arts. In 2016, the artist graduated with a thesis on the impact of LGBTQ + culture and drag in pop culture. In the same year, Bertolucci continued studying by enrolling in the specialist degree course from which they graduated with a thesis that analyzed the relationship between contemporary society and the decomposition of the human body.
Bertolucci varied work has received ample recognition; in 2018, they created the performance “Eternity’s Act”, together with Giacomo Salerno, which was shown at the “Forme del Verde” contemporary art festival in San Quirico D’orcia. In that same year, their work “Dollhouse” won second prize in the EneganArt contemporary art competition and in 2019, the duo’s piece “Il Bacio” was among the finalists for the Italian National Arts Award.
One of my biggest inspirations is old Hollywood, an environment in which the archetype of the construction of beauty lives in a world of its own, covered with a golden patina, far and unattainable. I identify as non-binary and I’m an LGBTQ activist. I live in the firm conviction that freedom of expression is a fundamental right of the individual, which makes it is possible to create a better world.