EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES: DAVIDE CANTONI: SOLAR FLAIR

By (TK) Published on .

Most Popular
Davide Cantoni is a Henry/Hal/Inferno artist at Post Perfect's design/effects boutique Cyclotron, in New York, who works up a bit of an inferno in his parallel fine-art career as well. His series of "burn drawings" are made by transferring photographs from The New York Times onto vellum, then burning the images in with sunlight through a magnifying glass. Here we see a scorched Hillary Clinton, though his subjects run the gamut from "adverts for Chanel to people being shot in Rwanda," says Cantoni. "In our high-velocity society, images are consumed and discarded as quickly as they are created," he explains. "The burning, while a destructive process, makes the images more 'permanent.' Sunlight is the revealer, and it delivers a new life as well as almost total annihilation."

Whither the technique? The Italian-born, London art school-educated and English-accented Cantoni, 31, says he did indeed play in the sun with a magnifying glass when he was a child in Milan, but he will not admit to frying bugs. He has, however, fried more than 100 newspaper images, which sell for about $500 each and have been exhibited in the U.K., Italy and New York. The burning, along with a painting technique he calls "surface of invisibility" is all about layers, as is his equally evanescent Cyclotron work, he notes. Is there a parallel between the short-lived news image and the short-lived commercial? "It hadn't occurred

In this article: