Style.No.Chaser caught up with Elisa Ancori, a fascinating Barcelona-born artist who travels through fantastical realms to explore the soul. Her journey brings her to a destination of human and aquatic hybrids that exude breathtaking simplicity and spirituality. Elisa is a feisty and dynamic personality who follows her own path and is admiringly grounded.
See the interview below …
“I travel under the skin and discover innards that represent a limbo …”
Please tell us a bit about yourself – your childhood, siblings, where he grew up, what you liked as a child, strange thoughts as a child / now unique attributes, where he now lives, etc.?
I was born in Barcelona in 1990 to a Peruvian father and Catalan mother. They met in Las Ramblas as my father played Andean music with a group on the street. My parents are very outgoing and love to tease – I came out just the complete opposite. Being a musician, my father always shared with me the difficulties of being in the art world. My mother is a sales agent and always encourages me to grow up and leave all my insecurities behind. I grew up with two older brothers. We spent summers in Begues, a mountain village, not far from the city. We played in the woods and picked fruits and vegetables from our garden. During the rest of the year, we spent a lot of time with my grandparents who lived on the same street as us. My grandmother is like a second mother to me. My grandfather had a store of frames in the center of Barcelona, right on Canuda Street. I dreamt of creating art like the paintings in the frames. I started drawing things I saw – landscapes, still lifes, people, anything. Now, I am an artist because my grandfather was the first to encourage me to be one, and he was always very proud of me. When he died 12 years ago, I promised I would do something good with my drawings and persevere without his guidance. I currently live with my grandmother. I studied Fine Art and Illustration, and I am dedicated to creating works to exhibit in galleries and fulfill assignments as a freelance illustrator. I am currently working on illustrating a story by a young writer that will possibly be published next year. I would also love to get into the world of film.
What does art mean to you?
It is a form of expression. Artists create works that interact with the viewer and invite various forms of reflection, be it conceptual, political, etc. Everyone chooses what he/she wants to reflect and contribute to society – I like to be a spectator and a producer and to be able to enjoy the ideas presented by artists. I think as an artist you do not necessarily think, you contemplate. Someone told me that my sketches were hypnotizing, sweet and mysterious at the same time. It is amazing to me that art can evoke such a reaction from people.
You state in your background that your work is a fusion of “Body and Soul” – can you explain what this means?
In several works, specifically the last series of drawings entitled “Metamorfish”, there is a silent seeking and yearning for a connection between man and his animal side. This reveals something inside all people that can flourish and grow. I travel under the skin and discover innards that represent a limbo where the body is reborn ceases to be human and turns into a marine hybrid. In this concept, animal parts heal the wounds we have experienced in our human world.
How would you describe your art form?
My work is aesthetic, fantastic and delicate. My images are energetic, lively, melancholic and a little disturbing. I utilize a lot of technique in my drawings of human anatomy because this has always interested me. I like to create believable images which transform reality into fantastic figures and imaginary scenes.
What tools do you use to create your work and how did you create your personal style of art?
For paper drawings, I use pencils (black and colored) and watercolor. On wood, I use pen and acrylic paint. When I make illustrations for commissioned or editorial work, I use different techniques like digital collage and digital painting.
People generally feel that art is something that comes naturally to artists but you went to art school – what did art school teach you about art?
Art school opened my mind to the history of art. It helped me develop the skill of drawing the human body. I learned from peers and got experience in photography, sculpture, design, and engraving.
What is the worst criticism you have received about your work? What is the best compliment you have received about your work?
The worst was when strange sounds came from the mouth of a college professor – he had no words for my work. I thought this was quite a bad reaction.
The best compliment was when someone told me that my work was ‘tender and tragic’ and also ‘mesmerizing’. This description is pretty close to the feeling I have when I look at my own pictures.
Since Style.No.Chaser is a men’s lifestyle magazine, what attributes/items/clothing /etc. do you think define a man?
We live in a world of fashion and it is normal that we all want to be identified within a particular style. Personally, I am drawn to natural elegance.
What is your life philosophy?
“Life is a play that does not allow testing. So, sing, cry, dance, laugh and live intensely, before the curtain closes and the piece ends with no applause.” C. Chaplin
How can people learn more about your current and future works?