MARTA LOCK’S INTERVIEWS: ALINA CIUCIU, THE RANDOMNESS OF LIFE LEADING TOWARDS ONE’S AUTHENTIC AND NATURAL PATH

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Despite often clearly perceiving the natural aptitude that would lead an individual to go in a direction opposite to the one undertaken out of existential necessity, one must repeatedly come up against the evidence and those almost magical signals that come along to induce reflection and questioning, until they become too obvious to ignore. This is what happened to Alina Ciuciu who, despite having felt a strong aptitude for art, theatre, music and poetry since childhood, was in fact not encouraged by her teachers, thus leading her to leave her natural inclination unheeded and devote herself to courses of study not related to her artistic dream, even though she had chosen a humanistic direction.

She had not been able to have a specific training that would allow her to understand and measure herself against the chromaticity necessary to realise her nature, yet she could not detach herself from the fascination of colours by deepening her study of art, even as a self-taught artist; and it was while taking a book on Impressionism with her on a trip to Egypt that she received her first strong signal from the energies that surrounded her and that instinctively drove her to immortalise the pyramids, sphinxes and beautiful landscapes around her, but also other subjects reproduced from pre-existing photographs and images, with a blue biro on paper.

As fate would have it, an Egyptian entrepreneur asked her to buy all her drawings, increasing in her the determination not to stop pursuing that dream that had finally been revealed; from that moment on, in fact, she continued to draw, extending her technique to charcoal and pencils, although her artistic career was still flanked by her previous job. However, art was a moment of escapism, it made her happy and above all satisfied her imaginative and curious nature which, in 2010, led her to experiment with colour in oil; a gift consisting of an easel, paints and a canvas literally changed her approach to art as well as increasing the possibility of being appreciated by enthusiasts who asked her to buy her artworks. However, the moment was not yet ripe for her to choose to pursue a full-time artistic career; perhaps she felt the need for more signs, more confirmation that this could be her true path, the one within which she could realise herself and feel happy.

After a couple of years of reflection, of immobility probably necessary to make that leap forward that would occur shortly afterwards, in 2017 Alina Ciuciu decided to accept the challenge of putting herself on the line, also strong in the support of those who continued to commission paintings from her because they were fascinated by her mastery in the use of acrylic paint and the palette knife, with which she had tried her hand in the previous period of transition, and increased the visibility on her Linkedin profile that would consecrate her to success, allowing her to sell many artworks. Her paintings with a strong impressionist imprint are full of expressive romanticism, energy, atmosphere and aesthetic taste, almost as if the balance of all these elements was indispensable for the artist to manifest her emotions, the sensations she manages to express through her encounter with the canvas, as if her intimate sensitivity in observing her surroundings found a voice through painting.

The work Blue Venice succeeds in narrating all the melancholic and at the same time idyllic atmosphere of a unique, ethereal, beautiful city; what emerges in the painting is the silence that envelops it, the gentle rocking generated by the movement of the water that makes it almost unreal compared to the frenetic traffic of the metropolis or modern urban centres. Alina Ciuciu chooses dawn, a time when tourists are not yet roaming its calle and everything seems to be waiting to show its best side soon, allowing the world to continue to fall in love with the marvellous lagoon city.

The love for animals, and horses in particular, is another characteristic of Ciuciu’s painting. She manages to capture the sweetest, softest expressions because that is exactly the interpretation she gives to the reality that surrounds her through the evanescence of colours and strokes. Let us now find out more through this interview.

Alina, you almost had to give up your artistic dream when you were young; how much did the lack of encouragement from your teachers influence your choice of the next path to take? Do you think it is important to follow one’s own nature from the outset or do you think that sometimes life leads to different paths for the artist to mature and deepen himself and his skills before he can express himself through art?

To give up a dream you must first have the dream and unfortunately children do not have the concept of real art to be able to dream it. For them it is a game and they enjoy it and this makes everything they create particularly beautiful and unique. It is up to the adults and especially the art teachers to make them understand how important it is what each child creates with his hands and imagination. In my particular case I think it was all latent, like a seed under the soil that wants to germinate and awaits the arrival of better weather. Each of us has his own story and his own path, and in every milestone there is an experience from which one draws lessons and one’s own considerations. Of course, I regret all the years I did not paint but I am striving to make up for it, like Marcel Proust in search of lost time. I think this happens to everyone a bit.

Your energy and curiosity drive you to be a perfect entrepreneur of yourself, strong and determined, yet in your artworks emerges your more contemplative, more romantic side. Is painting perhaps a way of finding greater balance by manifesting a side of you that in everyday life remains quieter? How important are dreams and fantasy in your painting?

Imagination goes far beyond the boundaries of knowledge, indeed, it sometimes makes it possible, it anticipates it. When you have an awareness of what art really is, you begin to dream, to go further, and the bigger the dream, the more determined you are. Personally, I do not paint for an economic purpose but for pure passion. That people then love my paintings and show a desire to have them, that is something consequential in which the way you relate to the world from an empathic point of view also comes into play. When the seller is pleasant, friendly and approachable, there are more chances to buy.

The beginnings were accidental, the continuation of the path was in turn driven by energies that kept you connected to art and then the affirmation came about thanks to your ability to put yourself on the line. Do you think you were privileged or did you just have the sensitivity and openness to listen to those signals that exist around man but that not everyone can perceive and follow? What was the exact moment when you realised that art would be your only path, your forever path?

True, the beginning was by pure chance, who would have thought? However, both open-mindedness and self-confidence weigh equally heavily in my artistic journey, as does the good fortune of having met exceptional people such as you Marta Lock, and Leonarda Zappulla, Vittorio Sgarbi, Philippe Daverio, Angelo Crespi, Mariarosaria Belgiovine, Rossella Bellan, Mazzilli Giulia, Antonietta Panico, who have given even more value to my work by promoting it whenever there has been a chance. And when you get to the point of living from art for art’s sake, there is no longer any obstacle. You understand that it is your mission and making art becomes as vital as breathing.

Your style is inextricably linked to Impressionism, both in terms of technique and also in the poses of your subjects and the look of the landscapes that emerge from your canvases; which masters of the past have inspired you the most? Which ones do you feel closest to in terms of expressive intent?

Monet all my life. If I had known him, I would have married him immediately. His soul envelops me and totally absorbs me every time I look at one of his paintings. Some dead people remain more beloved than many living people. In fact, they never die. As for my technique, with clear Impressionist and Post-Impressionist overtones, I try to make it my own, Alina style, very varied and colourful, lively, cheerful, almost animated, not so much for the movement insinuated as for the expression.

Behind you, you have an exhibition career that has led you to be noticed and appreciated abroad, from Romania to Denmark, nation this last that have been awarded you several times, and to participate in major group exhibitions in Italy, and have collectors all over the world. What are the highlights of the last few years? And what are your next projects?

I have the most beautiful job in the world. It allows me to travel physically and mentally, in person or through my canvases. From the United States to Australia, from Norway to Rwanda, to the Arab Emirates and of course all over Europe. And in every single event, every exhibition, every award or recognition, a new emotion arises. There is an almost complete list on my website Artedialina.com. To mention one rather than another would seem unfair to me although they have all contributed to my growth. I should mention them all or none. Upcoming projects include a solo exhibition in San Francisco and one in London, although mainly and also out of a sense of patriotism, my exhibition events are concentrated in Italy and Romania. And painting, painting, painting. Everything that goes through my head, everything I feel I have inside. And as I know myself, it will never be enough.

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