Friday, January 20, 2017

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Los Angeles - 30 after Roy, 34 after Ridley

Opening scene from the "Blade Runner 2049" teaser trailer 

Since the first time I watched it on a tv channel in the mid nineties, I've used to pay a periodic visit to that rusty and gloomy Los Angeles set in the imaginary vintage future conceived by Ridley Scott, Jordan Cronenweth, Syd Mead and Philip K. Dick. 

 I got so accustomed to its hazy and cyber-gothic mood that I've often transposed and filtered it into my artworks, tales and movies, specially "EDOnism", filmed 6 years ago in some Tokyo locations dramatically reminiscent of Animoid Row, some of them enriched by a night snow that now seems to have replaced the rain in the upcoming installment.

 


Up and down: stills from "EDOnism" directed by Alessandro Fantini and produced by Lorenzo Fantini in 2010.

Honestly I never expected to see an "updated" version of "Blade Runner" 34 years after its (initially unsuccessful) release.  As many other admirers of that vision, I still consider it a contained (thin) story whose strenght relies mostly on its swarming congeries of visual details, plot holes and paranoid ambiguities that don't need to be clarified at all. Actually I find quite hard to define it a traditional movie, as I prefer to think about it as an emotive sandbox or a sparkling acquarium where I can see my irrational thoughts swimming like weird fishes of the deep (a proof of the spiritual poignancy of this metaphor, again, can be appreciated in the love sequence of "EDOnism").

Nevertheless, my first reaction to the teaser of 19th December was warily optimistic. Its unsettling and enigmatic tone was quite close to what I've imagined keeping in mind all the news and behind-the-scene info, concept art and photos released over the last 6 months. Highly commendable is the way the Canadian director Denis Villeneuve and famed DOP Roger Deakins have homaged the slow pace of the scene of Deckard exploring the Bradbury building and the orange stillness of the first "Tyrell sequence" of the '82 movie (even though I suspect this new scene isn't set on Earth, or probably is a "memory" inserted in someone's brain related to the "desert" mentioned during the VK test of Holden) as well as the music sounds like a fitting Trent Reznor's rearrangement of some elements excerpted from the original Vangelis sonic dome. Despite I hoped this wasn't  just a remix conceived for the trailer but a little taste of the overall style of the final soundtrack, a couple days later the composer Johann Johannsson (who already collaborated with Villeneuve for "Sicario", "Prisoners" and "Arrival") stated that none of that belongs to his new score in progress.

 Ryan Gosling, aka "LAPD officer K", enters the deserted temple-casino that has become the new shelter of Deckard (and his four-legged companion).

Admittedly, so far the only element of the trailer that didn't really convinced me is the new scruffy and "Han Solo-esque" look of Deckard, but this appearence could find a "raison d'ĂȘtre" in the  more "low-profile" life style adopted by the retired replicant hunter. Even the new photos featured on the last Entertainment Weekly, clearly taken on set during the pauses between shooting (and probably not really representative of the final aesthetic), show a different, less grit and dark mood compared to the '82 movie.  It's all up to Villeneuve and who will decide the final cut to make sure this tonal shift will pay off on the big screen on the next 6th October, inheriting and enriching (not replicating) the poetic soul of the first masterwork. Otherwise, he knows its fate will be to get lost in time "like tears in snow".

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

O40

I managed to meet Jean-Michel Jarre for the first time last summer, while my brother Nicola was in serious lack of oxygene, since he was dying of pulmonary adenocarcinoma at 49. I told him how much my brother loved his music and used to play it to me when I was a child, introducing me to the musical realm that inspired most of my visual artworks. He had a special attachment to the Oxygene tape he played over and over on his car stereo. Jarre asked me what his name was and signed the cover of an Oxygene lp for him.
It was one of the most intense and symbolic moment of my life, since the art book I gave him contained also my painting dedicated to the 30th anniversary of “Oxygene” depicting two lungs filled with the liquid oxygene dripping from the Antarctic of a dying earth.
My brother died few hours after watching the photos of my meeting with Jarre. A vital cycle was ending, as well as a long season of my life. Another Life was going to breath again through Art and Memory.

That's what Oxygene has meant to me and my brother.

My photos of the meeting and some artworks inspired by his music are currently featured on Jarre's official website:http://jeanmicheljarre.com/oxygeneseries




Sunday, November 13, 2016

SUBversio (Pantheon of Hype)


SUBversio (Pantheon of Hype) by AFANTINI on DeviantArt

AFAN Alessandro Fantini
SUBversio (Pantheon of Hype) (2016)
Oil and chalk pastels on canvas, 80x60 cm.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

ANTALGICA - The new Alessandro Fantini's album

Alessandro Fantini - ANTALGICA

Between mind and body the pain is the invisible organ pumping blood into soul. 

 
Due to very gloomy circumstances occurred in my recent life, after the release of my latest concept album “Son of chasm” I started to work on several ideas linked to the theme of pain and suffering. Not just the notion of physical pain, but the metaphysical experience of sorrow and how humans deal with it over their lifetime: the pain of birth, of growing up, of loss, of separation,  of public judgement, of death. Hence, I decided to follow a more abstract creative route, without hinting at a narrative structure but trying to establish a pure emotive soundscape. My early plan was to develop through different styles the moods evoked by the first two instrumental tracks composed during winter, “Wealthy doom” and “Antalgica”.
Yet, as soon as I've completed the first instrumental draft of the song "Blazing frost" in December, I've started hearing a disembodied female voice flying over the icy vastness evoked by the piano notes. Suddenly I was overwhelmed by my childhood memories of the Finnish tundra depicted in some folk tales books I used to contemplate for hours in my bedroom, specially those illustrated by Rien Poortvliet, Brian Froud and Alan Lee. At the same time I recalled the ethereal unplugged songs performed by Anna Vihonen, a young talented Finnish singer I've discovered on the web a couple of years ago when she started following me on my Fandalism page. When she enthusiastically replied to my invite to contribute her vocals to this track by saying she was looking forward to experiment with electronic music since a long time, I realized that actually this song came out from the depths of a poetic ecosystem inhabited by both of us, so distant in space but so close in spirit.


So I came up with some lyrics describing the growth of a little girl from her kindergarten years to womanhood and I proposed her to sing in a series of songs where she had to play the character of this girl as a spirit of uncontaminated nature in her embryonic state, before facing the fear and distress of dealing with her peers and adult people, then with the pain of physical metamorphosis of adolescence and, eventually, the loss of her identity in the cauldron of social networks.


Despite the main concept may sound sombre and even pessimistic, the album is meant to be experienced as a spiritual healing therapy, a cathartic fresco made of sounds, pictures and words, because if music and art won’t ever cure any disease or treat human agony, it can be for sure a better medicine for the soul with no side effects or harmful ones. An Antalgic device helping to cope with the gap we have to cross between the two defining mysteries of our life.


ANTALGICA
1.Wealthy Doom (overture) 04:56
2.Antalgica 06:16
3. Blazing frost 05:39
4.Gartenmares 04:57
5.Mitosis 04:48
6.The Great Burden 05:20
7.Aponia, first movement 05:05
8.Aponia, second movement 08:14
9.Leaving Aphinar 04:36

Composed, performed, recorded and produced by Alessandro Fantini.
Lyrics, vocals and effects by Alessandro Fantini.
Vocals on "Blazing Frost", "Gartenmares", "Mitosis" and "Aponia (movement II)" by ARIANA aka Anna Vihonen.

©AFANSOUND
©ARIANA

Friday, September 30, 2016

The Great Burden


"The Great Burden" from the new upcoming Alessandro Fantini's album "Antalgica".
Composed, perfomed, mixed and produced by AFAN Alessandro Fantini.
Lyrics, vocals and effects by AFAN Alessandro Fantini.
Artwork by AFAN Alessandro Fantini.