Liliana La Vecchia, calligraphy and the magic of words

“Words are impor­tant to me; I’ve disco­ve­red the­re is some magic in words. Words are ener­gy, if we know how to use them well.” Lilia­na La Vec­chia thus descri­bes, in her work­shop, the acti­vi­ty of cal­li­gra­pher, that sin­ce many years has accom­pa­nied her life. On the table her works, cards, boards and besi­de also some fur­ni­shing com­ple­men­ts, a small table, a lamp that are wai­ting to be tran­sfor­med by her cal­li­gra­phic stro­kes. “For me – she explains – it’s not a sim­ple vir­tuous exer­ci­se or some wri­ting abi­li­ty, I’m inte­re­sted in using cal­li­gra­phy to tell some­thing, and to tell it the way I like, loo­king for new gra­phi­sms and even try­ing some­ti­mes to hide the mes­sa­ge, as, in my opi­nion, it’s beau­ti­ful to find out what is writ­ten. I belie­ve that the mes­sa­ge is never disjoin­ted by cal­li­gra­phy or, bet­ter said, I like, when I do some­thing, to see it rea­li­zed con­cre­te­ly, lit­tle by lit­tle.” “When I was a lit­tle girl – she remem­bers – I loved play­ing the magi­cian; well, we could say that the­se works are for me like seve­ral lit­tle rites, whe­re some­thing is writ­ten, and the­re is also the inten­tion to com­mu­ni­ca­te some­thing throu­gh the ima­ge. It’s not only calligraphy”.

The life-path of Lilia­na is rich of expe­rien­ces: “I’ve done plen­ty of things: art­work, scho­la­stic publi­shing for a living, I’ve sold mort­ga­ges for a living, too. I’ve been a set desi­gner, when I gra­dua­ted from the Aca­de­my, I’ve been a costu­me desi­gner. Then with some friends we have ope­ned a fur­ni­shing com­ple­men­ts sto­re and we wor­ked toge­ther for some time crea­ting one-of-a-kind pie­ces. I was alrea­dy wor­king a lot on the figu­ra­ti­ve aspect. At last, I began tea­ching. I real­ly like to com­mu­ni­ca­te with peo­ple, and now that I’m tea­ching, I rea­li­ze that I like it more and more”.

Paral­lel to this, Lilia­na has never aban­do­ned the arti­stic acti­vi­ty that has come a long way sin­ce the High School “whe­re I had a great arti­st as tea­cher, Mario Gian­so­ne. An arti­st, who still is for me an impor­tant inspi­ra­tio­nal figu­re. I must thank him for all I’ve learnt. He and Kit­ty Saba­tier, a lady cal­li­gra­phy master, that I’m still fol­lo­wing now, are key per­sons in my life”.

Liliana’s jour­ney con­ti­nues now with a work of research, always with a spe­cial atten­tion to the mes­sa­ge, details and ima­ge. “I make col­la­ges, I make work by a pseu­do-engra­ving, that is wor­king with cal­li­gra­phic ink direc­tly on paper, crea­ting uni­que pie­ces. I love to uti­li­ze card­boards, diver­se papers. I love the applied art using, for exam­ple, lit­tle table, lamps, fol­ding screens, shel­ves. Objec­ts that I some­ti­mes recy­cle or often make from scratch. By word of mouth, I recei­ve requests by clien­ts who often demand custo­mi­zed objec­ts. I’ve just com­ple­ted a fami­ly tree dra­wn on a big panel”.

Tea­cher, arti­st, arti­san, how do you feel?
“We are so many things, I don’t con­si­der myself only a mother, or only a wife, only an arti­st, only an arti­san. I’m not even only a cal­li­gra­pher, a part of me is a cal­li­gra­pher, ano­ther part is still in search of expres­sion. What I can say is that this part of me calls, has always cal­led and cycli­cal­ly take over the rest. It’s a way of life, I’ve always been in love with signs and colors. May­be – she ends – the time will come that I will do only this. I don’t ask me who I am, I know that word, ima­ge, and the search of their mea­ning will always be part of me”.

Lilia­na La Vecchia
Via Cri­stal­lie­ra 11