Carolina Altavilla's work includes visual activism for climate justice, gender, LGBTQIA+ rights, and cultural diversity.
How has your lived experience shaped your practice?
Since I was a child, illustration has been my refuge. It has been my safe place to return to identify and express myself intuitively. I have always been passionate about art and communication, showing great interest in the world around me and observing everything. This has led me from an early age to participate in movements of social and political activism. I could not illustrate something that is not part of my sensibility and neither is it outside of my convictions and that has to do with my story.
What are some of your biggest influences and motivations in your work? What issues are you passionate about working on?
I am motivated by illustrating everything that makes me reflect during the process, incorporate learning, investigate and learn about different perspectives. I am passionate to have an active role in human rights, gender and LGBTQIA+ and issues related to climate justice and cultural diversity. My work is influenced from the content by current social problems, and from the aesthetics by the taste for baroque compositions and modern painters, innovative-disruptive fashion designers and cinema.
How does a focus on women feed into your work?
The focus on women presents me with the challenge of making visible the multiplicity of bodily expressions and the diversity of bodies traversed by intersectionality. My main search is for the characters to be solid, uncomfortable, unsubmissive, far from perfection and what is socially expected. I have always been interested in representing women from my history, those I have met and have inspired me, those who have changed reality, those who try and myself.
What role can images play in providing community and celebration?
I think that an image is a message and an opportunity to generate criticism and impact. Demonstrating, celebrating and expressing oneself visually is to exist and be able to show the world who we are, to generate groupness and safe spaces where we can develop together with others. Images help us recognize ourselves and forge our own identity.
Where are you based and what excites you about the creative community around you?
I currently live in Turin, Italy. The circuits of art and culture that coexist here are truly inspiring. The creative community I interact with includes artists who are based mainly in Italy, France and Germany and they are from all over the world. The community is very open-minded, inclusive and multicultural. Strong ties are created and very interesting movements and interventions are activated. There is a unique synergy in this diversity where your work can grow and nurture, while you share the creative process with other colleagues in a very loving, multidisciplinary and collective way.