Lorenzo Quinn: the Sculptor whose hands are Supporting the meaning of Art

(Graphic Art Gino Aloisio)
(Graphic Art Gino Aloisio)

Today is a beautiful day for the column online “PIAZZA NAVONA”. We have another important Art meeting waiting for us. Infact, we have a chance to have with us the sculptor Lorenzo Quinn, the author of the large hands emerging from the Grand canal, seemingly supporting and bracing the Ca’ Sagredo Hotel. So enjoy the reading!

I am proud to introduce you Lorenzo Quinn, the Contemporary Artist whose work is inspired by Michelangelo, Bernini and Rodin. He is the son of the actor Anthony Quinn and his second wife costume designer Iolanda Addolori. His Art is famous all around the world. He is one of the most estemeed and appreciated Contemporary Artist. It is an honour to have in my virtual square this Artist so full of Life and concepts. It is a privilege to have the chance to learn, to understeand and to discover the deep meaning of Art.

Jolanda Addolori e Anthony Quinn
Jolanda Addolori and Anthony Quinn

So… welcome Mr Quinn and let start our interview!

  • When did you decide to become a Sculptor?

When I was 21, I decided that my future was in the sculpture, that it was the field that could better accommodate my energy and originality. In spite of being very influenced by Dali and his surrealistic art, I realized that neither painting nor surrealism were my element.

One day a gallerist told me that my paintings had a “volume” and proposed me to try and make an sculpture. I then decided to try with the hardest thing to sculpt: hands. That’s how my career in the sculpture world started.

Lorenzo Quinn (Courtesy of Lorenzo Quinn)
Lorenzo Quinn (Courtesy of Lorenzo Quinn)
  • You are the son of Anthony Quinn, the famous actor. Did he influence your career and your work?

Very much! Many people don’t know this, but my father painted a lot and even sculpted from time to time. He was a great artist beyond his acting career and always encouraged me and my brothers to be artistic.

Anthony Quinn e suo figlio Lorenzo
Anthony Quinn and his son Lorenzo
  • Could you tell what is (in your opinion) the difference between Sculpture and Painting?

I would mention mainly two differences:

Volume or dimensionality. A painting is flat, unidimensional. While sculpture allows you to go and see further, to feel the art. To have a dialogue with the public.

– In the other hand, when you do a painting and sell it, once you have spent the money, that’s it! The client has the painting but you have nothing to remind you of that piece of art. With sculpture is different. I always keep the mold. So, in a sense, no matter what, I always have the original piece.

Lorenzo Quinn
Lorenzo Quinn
  • Who are your Maestros? Who does inspire you?

The classic masters (Michelangelo, Bernini, Rodin), Salvador Dali, my own father…

  • How could you explain your brief career as an actor?

That was at the beginning, when I also used to sing. But it was mostly to follow my father’s steps. I never really loved acting as much as I loved painting or sculpting. That’s why I didn’t continue with it.

Anthony Quinn e suo figlio Lorenzo
Anthony Quinn and his son Lorenzo
  • In 1994 Vatican engaged you to sculpt the likeness of St Anthony for the Basilica del Santo in Padua. Could you tell me more about this work and your emotions?

This request made me reconnect with my catholic roots and feel that my art has not just an aesthetic value, but a spiritual too.

  • Why do you prefer to realize monumental sculptures?

I don’t really have a preference. I like to sculpt small or big pieces. However, I feel monumental sculptures can be more striking and spread better the messages that I want to share with the public.

Lorenzo Quinn (Per gentile concessione di Lorenzo Quinn)
Lorenzo Quinn (Courtesy of Lorenzo Quinn)
  • Could you tell me more about “Support”, that your monumental installation at the Ca’ Sagredo Hotel during Venice Biennale 2017. How was born your idea and what is its meaning?

The sculpture was born from a conversation that I had in Venice at the Ca’ Sagredo Hotel as there was a possibility to create a sculpture for them. Then, I thought that it would be very striking to have hands coming out of the water to support the building and to have this hands represent the climate change effects in Venice, and other parts of the world that are being affected.

"Support" di Lorenzo Quinn (Venezia)
“Support” by Lorenzo Quinn (Venice)
  • You are exposing all over the world. Could you tell me about your feeling and emotions about it?

It’s very exciting to see your work all over the world. It allows me to travel and learn more about different cultures. Also provides me with an important source of inspiration.

  • Could you tell me what does Art mean for you?

Well, I’m a figurative artist, therefore I have certain things that I want to say to people with my art, and I like to say them in a way that people can understand what I’m talking about. That’s why I use an universal language. That’s why I use hands and human figures. I have this love for the human body, I think it’s a beautiful form, you know. The fluidity of a human body is, for me, something quite special and there are so many things to be said about it still, and so many different ways to say it.

Lorenzo Quinn
Lorenzo Quinn
  • What are your next professional engagements?

I have a lot of projects in my hands right now, but I don’t really like to speak about them before they are released. We had a show in Harrods (London) and we are expecting to have another one in China in September.

Lorenzo Quinn
Lorenzo Quinn

Sadly it is arrived the moment to say goodbye to Lorenzo Quinn but not before I should like to thank him for joining us. I am very proud of this interview and I hope Mr Quinn would like to come back to talk with us… for another meeting Art!

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