A life dedicated to love, art and sustainability. After many years working in a social cooperative, Andrea Gamba felt the need to “achieve” good outcomes, ones that you can touch; so he devoted himself to his passion: wooden sculpture.
He began to work with wood at a young 12 years and has never ceased to practice fine wood carving. He opened a shop in the center of Turin – a “studio near the Po river park where I love to walk in nature and where I find its unsuspecting creatures just a few meters from downtown streets.”
Maybe due to a mild dyslexia that allows him to think in a different way – enhanced imagination, or perhaps arising from the love that pervades his life, Andrea became a renowned sculptor. His two lives came together in the creation of a school of arts and crafts and special courses in support of disadvantaged people.
Andrea, how would you define your work, your art and sustainability?
Sculpting a material as rich in character as wood is primarily a job of “reading”. The forms and the natural grain make every piece of wood unique and unrepeatable and one that can be interpreted in different ways. The real limit is the imagination of the interpreter, or the artist.
And each piece of wood “suggests” the final shape to the feelings of those who interpret it. The sculpture is a meeting between art and sustainability, two subjects in a strong dance motion: the artist and wood.
Are your creations very realistic shapes or are they completely abstract. What inspires you?
I am very attracted by both the exaggerated and figurative, where the pursuit of anatomical consistency becomes almost an obsession for detail, both by the search for the emotionality and through the representation of movement.
When I sculpt animals I like to think of the wood as a living organism, going to its death, rather than “rotted” maybe “vanished”, assuming a new position in space through its movement. A move dictated by music. My art and sustainability energy.
Has there been some great artist who inspires you?
An artist who inspired by the fact that he attended the meetings and that he as the Maestro Felice Tosalli. The study at the University of Art Nouveau struck me, especially Mucha and the Secession movement although I challenge you to find some form directly attributable to them.
My amorphous works are my own reinterpretation of Art Nouveau passing through a material no longer subservient to the artist, like wood, but the artist takes part with its being and its history in the creation of the work.
Andrea, how do you see your future?
This is a craft that can be declined in terms of design, art, and craft all the way to jewelry. Technological advances have made exponential advances for crafting and these will alter many professions, just think of the 3D printers that in a few years will be in every home.
But the quality of a work of ‘art’ does not consist of only the “technical” and, in my opinion, there will always be an important space for the understanding of the material and the sensitivity towards its unique exclusivity. So I think the crafts will be socially important for a long time yet- art and sustainability will share the stage.