interview from: Streaming Festival -The hague - Netherlands
From 2008 or so. I was younger , so forgive me.
Who is Claudio Castelli?
I finally got my MA degree in Industrial Design last November at Politecnico di Milano, and this was my "thesis project". Before that, I was born in Siena, the 2nd march of 1979, but i always lived in Grosseto till i was 19, where i had a "classical" highschool education, studing Latin, ancien Greek, philosophy, french, story, italian medieaval literature etc. (But not English :) ) After that, when I was 19, i moved to Milano, to attend "design" at Politecnico. After 3 years spent there, I felt I wanted to see more, so, first I did an Erasmus project in THEI of Athens , for 6 months, where I had a wonderfull time (and i 've got some traditional art skills-specially sculpting and quick sketch), after that, I went to Kyushu institute of design (Fukuoka, Japan) ,where I stayed one year, having the occasion to jump in every course, from computer music to sculpting, digital arts etc... enjoying the big cultural difference (a very strong and exciting experience) and starting working for first time in "my field", as illustrator and video-artist. Beeing away from Italy, SPECIALLY when I was in Japan, I realized, maybe for first time in my life, about my "roots". When I came back to Italy, I took a little time to readapt myself living in my country, I took time to find a cheap place where to stay in Milano (every year more and more expensive)and to make the VERY TECHINCALS exams I still had to do. It was a torture, cause, since I was in Greece, I dedicaded myself to painting, sculpting and computer art. After looking for a while, I finally found a professor, Marco Maiocchi that accepted my thesis (this was integrant part of it... doesen't match well with the term "design", maybe... but this was what I wanted to do). Besides that, I made other shorts (a few "free" and artistics, one for "enel", italian electric company), recently an abstract video for a promotional installation in "fiera di Milano", and I have been the director of a multimedia photo exposition shotted by Paolo DelPapa. I’m also “crafting” a few websites, (to get some money) some promotional video for events, the design for an “artistic” glass and some paints… Currently I'm back in my town, Grosseto, enjoying the beautifull landscape, my family, the possibility to go to the beach by bicycle. I'm preparing a personal exibition (with paints and videos) , and a new cg Short related to Odysseus...
I always had a passion for writing and drawing comics (specially during classes, at school). When we write, we have the possibility to express our feelings and share with others. But , ofcourse, only with people able to understand my native language. Filmmaking, specially when we use images to tell storys, can give a me "universal" language! Been in countries where I had hard time to use words to express my feelings, emphasised this feeling.
My work is about...
The idea about this movie came out at first when i was in japan, i think, and matherialize itself when I went back to italy.... we live in a world where "specialization" in a field it s all. And we get to become like "machines"...forgetting about other importants things in our lifes. My movie is full of symbolism, maybe too much to get well understood at first view. There is a first part, when our "hero" wakes up in his room and walks in his little town. The town won't be idillic at all: it s full of "grotesques" vision, like the "blind" policemen (who looks full of authority,with pigeons and he can t see that on his back a man is getting killed), or the suicide scene, after witch the "priest" comes out and with his "benediction" saves the world from the EVIL (or maybe it s just the rain that do that), for running away later when 2 scary guys comes out to menace him. Or other things like the "bar scene" where people fights all drunks to forgets about theyr problems. Later the "city" where he goes to work, will be full of mechanicity, with some exceptions, like when our hero "become a dog" (his "vitalism" wakes up in his desperate mind), or when he pass in darks dangerous street having tooken the "wrong exit" at the station, or when, falling with the trash, he only haves a second to see a "love" in his mechanic life. Etc Etc. The movie gets visual inspiration from Depero's paintings, with some narratives elements taken from Pasolini movies, or "classic " novels from Manzoni's "promessi sposi". It also comes out from our working enviroment here in italy, full of "stages" , "internships" , "training on the job" : young graduates doing that won't get anything, neither money (they don't pay anthing, ofcourse) or fame (the "studio" will sign the project, ususally without even writing the name of the "real" designer). I really don't like that.While I was in Japan, I got payed for the works I' ve done, even having an "internship contract". So, since here I won t get money anyway,and "boss" will usually know even less than me, better to do something I really like,in witch I believe and could possibly give me some exposure! I also think that the world would be interested in seeyng "Italy" , rather than a squallid tempht to emulate a PIXAR production
Financing your movie?
Ahah! Who would finance something like this? Even more famous artists have a very hard time to get financiated, so often the only italian movies that could come out in a " theatre" are those that will have a SURE appealing to big public: naked women, stupid jokes , etc. A very few Directors, even without found, can make something big (like Benigni, for example), cuz they have a big carrier at their back... So, at least, using only cg I didn t have huge expenses....it was also my thesis project, so, i think it s normal even not tryng to ask for founds. After that this movie have been selected as the only Italian candidate at Imagina awards in Montecarlo, I tryed to write to our "national Cultural departement", about the idea of financing my new project, but still I haven t get any concrete reply. I started working on it anyway. Even superheroes in comics they work-fighting the crime for free.... But usually they have some solid business on theyr back (like batman, for example). Me, I don't. That s why I try to make some little money making websites, and from july I can apply to teach something in an high school- Hope that getting some exposure, someone will like my style, and possibly will give me the possibility of earning some money doing what I love doing.
New Media; a challenge for film makers?
New Media are a great source for film makers. Both to exit from theyr "isolation", no matters where they live, meet some interesting people in theyr field. having the occasion to get trained on techics and have a good overal vision on what the rest of the world is making. I don t think that new media are overrated at all-
Which film related websites do you frequent?
www.filmfestivals.com, weblog.nmartproject, www.cgitalia.it, then, "internationally", www.cgsociety.org , also many others websites related to paint, cg art, etc in italy.
Individual film making or co-operation?
I worked in team, before, and i had good time doing it. The only concern, doing "videoart", rather than movies, is that emotions and feelings are really "individuals", so, it s really hard to comunicate to the team, specially if, like in college, everyone wanna be the "director". In a different enviroment, as in a Team of "specialist", that could be different. My speciality, i don t know.. I think I' m a good problem solver, for finding technological solutions, I have some taste for arts, and i'm very calm and listening person..., and i get quickly many "creative"ideas, so, i would say, maybe art director? (Nice to make compliments about ourselfs :) ) But, for the kind of works I m making now, the only way is "individual". I'm really "picky".
Your plans and dreams...
I don' t know exactly. I wish i can survive making something i really like to make.
Digital or classic?
Both: digital and analogical. I own a mini dv videocamera, but i didn t uses in this movie...
View the works of Claudio Castelli
All other remarks
what ever is left to say... I only wish that my country would love me as I love her (very cultural citation , is what says J.J.RAMBO in "First Blood") Ciao! Thank You for Your initiative!