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Artist spotlight: Luca Brignoli

– by Julianne De Souza

19-year-old Luca Brignoli is a Perth artist, student, street art enthusiast and anime lover. The past few years have seen him graduate high school, travel around Europe, dabble in architecture studies and defer university in order to work. This year, he has set his sights upon studying graphic design while continuing to expand his body of work.

A Disney-inspired painting and a trip to Germany are two of the most significant memories to which Luca attributes his love of art. The former was a childhood gift from an Italian cousin that sparked his initial interest in the world of art. The latter gave him the opportunity to tour the studios of Germany’s tight-knit street art community, an experience that strengthened his appreciation for the history of street art and artists that support one another. “They all seemed to know everything about the history of street art, and it’s got such a rich history in Germany. I really enjoyed that and I would really like to be part of something like that, a collective of artists, like Many in Fremantle.”

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When asked how he would define his style, Luca answers that that is something he is still trying to find. He admits that his contribution to the redecoration of the Colosoul office, a painting of a ghost, was in fact inspired by an image he saw on Tumblr. “It wasn’t really my own thoughts put onto the page. I’m still kind of figuring out – that’s the kind of stuff I like. I’ve always liked graffiti, street art, things like that. I don’t really know what my style is.”

Luca’s inspirations include Keith Haring, Egon Schiele and street artist Banksy. “I really like all [Schiele’s] series’ of body studies. He did hundreds and hundreds of these drawings of body studies just on brown paper. I really like stuff like that. Whenever I do a painting, I always do the subject first and I have a white background. I leave it at that because I can’t think of what else to put in the background, and I like how it looks just sitting there.”

Luca’s favourite piece of his own is, unsurprisingly, the one that was the most fun to create. “It was three nights of people doing performances and art pieces and stuff like that at Notre Dame. Things like ‘illuminate’ or something like that, and I did a painting of myself holding – it was supposed to be a star or something. I did it onto wood, drilled all these holes into it and put LEDs through so they were all like stars. I really like mixed media stuff like that.”

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Luca speaks highly of Many 6160, the former department store turned local art space in Fremantle. “I hope that places like Many keep opening up and are able to extend their lease and actually stay there, and not get kicked out of for random developments… It’s a really cool way that they’ve gotten all these people together to collaborate and make this really cool thing. It’s probably the nicest collection of shops in such a small place in Fremantle at the moment.”

Beyond studying graphic design, Luca’s plans for the future are vague. “I think that I would really enjoy doing something like advertising or something like that; something that I can be fairly comfortable and kind of make money off of, but also just be able to do art, basically. That’s always been my aim; to be able to do art and not be like a starving artist. Be a comfortable artist, I guess, that’s my aim in life.” As for selling his works, Luca humbly states that he should “probably get a bit better at art” before he tries to sell it.

Photo credit: Luca Brignoli

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