Monday, December 18, 2017

Saturday, December 2, 2017



Tiranti Transit by Alessandro Fantini from AFan Alessandro Fantini on Vimeo.

 The following is an interesting review of one my early short movies shot in DV provided some years ago by the american director and writer Patrick Meaney

Tiranti Transit is a short film by Italian director, Alessandro Fantini. It was interesting approaching this film because I can see so much of my own work in the film, both the triumphs and the failures.

The film's in Italian, and I didn't have access to the English dialogue, but I think it's so well made that you don't even need to understand the dialogue. The primary concern is building a mood, and what lingers with me after viewing the film is not the story, it's more this feeling of melancholy and warmth. In that respect, it's a very prototypical European art film. I haven't seen that much of his work, but it's reminiscent of Antonioni, with a decentralized narrative and a focus on aesthetic qualities.

I think that's what makes cinema so powerful, a Wong Kar-Wai film wouldn't work in any other medium because it's not solely about the story, or solely about the aesthetics, it's about the fusion of music and visual to create a singular feeling. The score in this film is fantastic, moody and Blade Runneresque, it's a large part of why the short works as well as it does.

The best moments in the film are at the end. There's a fantastic shot where the woman opens a door inside and there's a cut to a wide open road, which we then see her standing on. It's a great moment of surreal cutting, using editing to make a transition that's not possible in reality. This leads up to the really nice ending of the film.

My big issue with the film, something that's true of a lot of low budget, digital works, is that some shots just feel like home video, and that takes you out of the story. It's the biggest concern in working with digital, I absolutely love DV and would gladly shoot it over film, but it means that you need to better, to ensure that each shot has the care you would spend for a filmbased take. Even David Lynch had some really sloppily composed shots in Inland Empire, it's tough to nail every shot and a few here just didn't quite work. But, it didn't fully take me out of the story's mood, and I was able to quickly shift back in and reengage with the story. Maybe some color correction would resolve that issue, or more likely, just a higher end camera.

The other thing I wasn't sure about was the zooms. Some of them were great, but some felt a bit arbitrary. Some filmmakers use the zoom lens in great ways, most notably Robert Altman. I feel like with the zoom you either have to be really slow, or really fast. If you use the default camera speed, it can feel rote. But, I'm not sure if I'm reacting that way just because I know about cameras and can see how it worked. However, I'm still glad that he tried it, because some of those zooms made for great moment.

I'd rather watch a film like this than a polished Hollywood movie that doesn't have any energy in the shooting. I'd rather have a few shots that don't quite make it if it means having some of the fantastic compositions that appear throughout the film. As I've said many times before, I'd rather see a film that aims high and doesn't quite make it than something that has no ambition and nails it. So, the flaws of this film don't mean that it's not a great viewing. This film is a world you can slip into, and I really enjoyed my time there. And, the ending had a primal power that I found very affecting and well done.

If you want to view the film, it's on line here, and there's more information on Alessandro, including some fantastic art, right here. at his site.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Presque vu - Atlas of Untold (book preview)


Alessandro Fantini - Presque vu - Atlas of Untold
(book preview)
Music by Alessandro Fantini

Deluxe edition
Category  Fine Art
Size: Large Format Landscape, 13×11 in, 33×28 cm
80 Pages

Paperback edition
Category  Fine Art
Size: Small Square, 7×7 in, 18×18 cm
80 Pages
Hardcover, Dust Jacket: 9781320023573
Softcover: 9781320023559
Hardcover, ImageWrap: 9781320023566

"I consider painting my most intimate dominion where pursuing the evocation of what I like to define “mysterium interruptum”, “a suspended mystery”, that is something very similar to the experience of the “presque vu”, “almost seen”, when we feel that we’re about to recall a name or a word without being able to tell it. In fact like the more sensual “coitus interruptus”, the pleasure of this impression relies on the anguished awareness of the unspeakable that only the crystallization of momentum rendered by a painting can deliver to the watcher". 

More than a decade of meditative studies around the mysteries of Being projected on canvases, papers and videos, constantly fluctuating between stylistic reminiscences of Flemish masters, symbolism, surrealism and glimpses of neo-realist dimensions tied to waking dream intuitions and self-induced hallucinations; more than 450 artworks generated by an aesthetic Stakhanovism nurtured since the first childhood experiments in comics and anime; more than a simple artist obsessed by his own self-centered realm or the latest artistic trend, Alessandro Fantini has always conceived his creative activity as a privileged “detector” of all the unspeakable and enigmatic realities hidden behind the material as well as spiritual sphere. The paintings collected in this "Atlas of Untold" are the best proofs that the roads of the mystery leads nowhere but to the silent and swarming cities of Unknown. Indeed, everything you cannot tell by using words that you have "on the tip of your tongue" is what makes art worth of being admired.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

The Chants of Valkoi

AFAN Alessandro Fantini, The Chants of Valkoi, oil on canvas mounted on cardboard, 50x40 cm. (2017)

A painting based upon a sequence described in my last novel "Nurse Blizzard".

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

One more for the road


This is the first of my 4 handmade artworks submitted to the Talenthouse "Blade Runner 2049" contest. Ridley Scott and a Warner Bros jury selected the best five artworks inspired by the upcoming sequel directed by Denis Villeneuve, starring Harrison Ford reprising his role as Deckard and Ryan Gosling as a rookie Blade Runner.

 I think the high secrecy enveloping the plot of the movie has made harder for the partecipants to figure out a relevant visual concept. That's why I've created a more surreal yet plausible image by using the Deckard's jukebox (shown in an early featurette) projecting the holographic faces of the actors around the "mnemonic" globe, hinting at the "musical" enigma of reality and memory. I still don't know if the fact an awful child scribble on Talenthouse got more support than this and the other 3 artworks is an amusing or depressing statement about the perception of art and creativity on line.

 Moreover, having just seen the winners of the Talenthouse contest, I've realized that joining this kind of "competitions" has no point at all (beside getting the chance to figure out some new specific movie-based art). 

All the art contests with money reward that I've joined over the years were won by friends or relatives of the jury (that's how it generally works in Italy, where you have to make sure to have the right affiliations even before starting to dream about becoming an artist).

Anyway, I'm glad that at least an oil painting has been selected (that one by the talented Nicky Barkla)

My personal reward is that no artist have thought about using the holographic jukebox as a way to "symbolize" and provide a conceptual frame to the traditonal composition of "actors faces" in order to underline the ambiguity between artificial and real. Indeed, despite the technical skills, the winners look like "replicants"of the same poster pattern.

No doubt it has been a very tough job for the jury to select only 5 works from the sheer amount of excellent submissions. Nevertheless the lack of variety in visual ideas makes you think that the rules of the contest should have clarified that they just wanted "alternative posters featuring the actors" (possibly made with vexel art by Philippine designers, that's a more elegant way to call photomanipulation) instead of "artworks inspired by", a word that defines a far more creative and open-minded approach than simply re-assembling photobased faces with glaring neon-like colors.

Well, at least I know that I've spent 8 days on a real rough canvas with real brushes painting with real greasy oil colors watching it with my real eyes. 

As Deckard says in the new movie"I know what's real!" (am I a Nexus 7?). 

Checked and cleared! Have a better one!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Gorgonia is here


Gorgonia (2017) 

Into and beyond the deep of pleasure. 

A concept album conceived and composed by Alessandro Fantini. 

There's a troubled road leading to katastematic pleasure, a permanent state of spiritual well-being beyond the mercurial pleasures of physical world.

 Composed, performed, mixed and produced by Alessandro Fantini. 


©Copyright secured by Soundreef (2017)

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Is this the Art world we really want?

When I saw the cover art of the new Roger Waters album "Is this the life we really want?" I was absolutely sure it was credited to or at least inspired by Emilio Isgrò, a famous conceptual artist who started developing his "cancelation" concept since the early '60, long before Syd Barrett founded Pink Floyd. Instead, it seems Waters was unaware of him or maybe his creative staff forgot to acknowledge him in the album credits. Isgrò has been able to  report the plagiarism few days after the official release date and to stop the album distribution in Italy mainly thanks to the fact he's a world-wide renowned artist represented by several galleries around the globe.

However, I think my case is even worse: in 2008 the image of an oil painting I created and released on the web in 2006 for the 30th anniversary of Jean-Michel Jarre album "Oxygene" has been "stolen" by an illegal Russian label called "Star Mark" to be printed without my name as the cover art of an unoffficial greatest hits that's still on sale on many music stores. So far, I haven't been able to denounce them since the label hasn't an official address and no one suppported me in reporting this case of intellectual property right abuse. Jarre himself, who's the president of CISAC , the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers, hasn't stated anything yet about this case directly linked to his music (last year I've even managed to personally give him my artbook containing that painting). 

  My artwork has been released for the first time on line in 2006 by the webmaster Duncan Walls on the JarreUk website as a tribute to the 30th anniversary of Jarre's "Oxygene" album and the "Water for life" concert held by Jarre in December amidst the dunes of the Sahara desert at Merzouga, Morocco .
Soon after in 2007 it has been featured as an animated video on my own Youtube channel:
The original artwork has been exhibited for the first time at the London Brick Lane gallery during October 2007.
It has been included in my first color artbook "The Sinovial Gaze - The art of Alessandro Fantini" released in 2008.

Isgrò didn't need the support of CISAC as he's already wealthy and famous enough to sue anyone attempting to damage his intellectual property. His case can be considered the tragic proof that if you're a talented young artist (looking for being credited as such) but unable to pay lawyers or without influential friends you're doomed to be (metaphorically) raped and mocked by the commercial system. How can I encourage emerging artists to post their works on the web if someone like me, after releasing a sheer amount of artworks, books, videos and music is still struggling to be protected and treated with respect?
Is this the Art World we really want?

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Gorgonia - Into and beyond the deep of pleasure


Gorgonia (2017)
Into and beyond the deep of pleasure. 
Available now on Spotify.

A concept album conceived and composed by Alessandro Fantini.

There's a troubled road leading to katastematic pleasure, a permanent state of spiritual well-being beyond the mercurial pleasures of physical world.

Composed, performed, mixed and produced by Alessandro Fantini.
©Copyright secured by Soundreef (2017)

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Reminiscing the floating world: about EDOnism and a giant catfish

Edonism is the tragic story of James Hallway, an English businessman from the UK who comes to Tokyo looking to fulfill his dreams and lead a peaceful life with his beautiful wife, Sophie. Instead he finds toil, torment and alcoholism. Unable to bear his descent into self-destruction, Sophie leaves, abandoning him to his downward spiral into the gutter. Day by day, his reality is consumed by hallucinations and weird perceptions. Once things can’t get any worse, he falls into a coma.
When he awakens from the coma, he begins to learn some terrifying truths about his condition and his connection to a long-forgotten legend from ancient Japan. Together with the resourceful Dr Geena Landlord he attempts a desperate quest of discovery that leads them both to the very heart of a conspiracy involving a secret government order and the enigmatic being known as the The Cat Fish. 

The sci-fi mystery movie "EDOnism" filmed in Tokyo, directed, written, edited by Alessandro Fantini and produced by Lorenzo Fantini in 2010, had its Italian premiere at the first edition of "La Selva Nera" international film festival in Selvazzano Dentro, Padua, founded and directed by film critic Massimo Bezzati and filmmaker-writer Stefano Bovi.

 When I faced for the first time the idea to shoot a movie in Tokyo, while I was discussing the hypothesis with then soon-to-be EDonism producer Lorenzo Fantini during his latest stay in Italy in 2009, I immediately thought that the script should have deal with something gigantic, frightening and epic. No other city in the world is able to suggest the feeling of a majestic and intimidating human beehive as much as Tokyo. It seemed that all my obsessions for movies like Blade Runner, Akira and Ghost in the Shell as well as my interest in Shintoism, Ukiyo-e art,  and Suehiro Maruo, would have take me sooner or later  to nowhere but to the enigmatic land of geisha, samurai, Godzilla and hi-tech marvels.  As usual, the way I fleshed out the concept and the story was closer to the process of conceiving a painting or a comic than to a traditional pre-production of a movie.
EDOnism FB page:

Director, editor, animator, screenwriter, co-producer and soundtrack composer: AFan Alessandro Fantini
Producer, art director, co-writer, casting director and location manager: Lorenzo Fantini
Line producer: Miles Elliott
Assistant producer: Lucy King
Post production supervisor: Nate Jensen
Make up artist: Kana Yoshida
Cast: Sacha Mühlebach, Helene Salvini Fujita, Hiro Super, Lucy King, Lorenzo Fantini, Kyle H., Nate Jensen, Tony Evans, Alessandro Fantini, Cyrus Malekani.

Genre: Sci-fi thriller, drama, adventure
Shooting format: HDV
Runtime: 65 min.
Country: Italy, Japan
Language: English
Filming locations: Tokyo
Release date: June 2010

Monday, April 3, 2017

About copyright infringement and web art jackals

The following is the text of my answer to a question posted on by the American designer Darryl Lankford who got in touch with me after knowing about the case of my painting image stolen by an illegal Russian music label in 2008.

First off, thank you for requesting my own opinion and thought about this very delicate matter and for linking my own case and question posted on Quora some time ago. I need to underline that I’ve started painting and drawing at a very early age. My first artistic works were put on display in my hometown when I was 8 years old, so since then I’ve always tried many ways to reach a wider and wider audience. When I got my first access to the internet in 2000 I’ve immediately created my personal website hosting a small selection of paintings while I was keeping exhibiting at local group shows and solo shows (and studying for my Bachelor’s degree in Literature). I was alredy aware of the risk of being “copied” or that someone would steal my art without crediting me, but I was confident that it could be only a minor drawback once my art had had a public recognition. I was firmly persuaded that leaving a sign of my own existence on the internet was a mandatory way to get a first exposure and credit as an artist. In my early years I’ve never been too much worried about extreme originality or uniqueness as I was still experimenting and elaborating different ideas and styles by observing and studying themes and concepts from other artists.
Moreover, I tend to consider unique the personality and the creative approach of the artist more than his individual artworks: indeed over the years I’ve extended my interest to writing, filmmaking, animation, music and acting. When considered as a whole, I think that my artistic output outlines a peculiar aesthetic world transcending the inevitable influences I’ve absorbed from other famous painters, directors, musicians and writers.
When in 2006 I painted my own tribute to the 30th anniversary of Jean-Michel Jarre’s “Oxygene” album (a benchmark in the development of electronic music that exerted an enduring spiritual influence on my artistic attitude) I was already planning to exhibit it both on line and in a public show. At that time some of my Jarre-related artworks were posted in a special art gallery on the unofficial “JarreUk” website managed by British fan Duncan Walls who appreciated and encouraged my visual interpretations of Jarre’s music. Jarre himself followed and endorsed this website that in a few years became a sort of official web portal gathering all the news regarding his music projects and concerts. Somehow he knew me already since he included my self-portrait in my atelier (sent via email when in 2003 his management requested fans to send their photos for a secret project) in the booklet of his official “AERO”greatest hits album released by Warner Music in 2004. Therefore I decided to unveil my celebrative oil painting titled “Spiracula (Oxygene 1976–2006)” in an exclusive article published on the main page of JarreUk, as I knew that Jarre himself would have been able to see it.

Few years later Duncan called me to make me aware that an illegal Russian "Jarre Greatest hits" digipack released in 2008 with my (uncredited) painting "Spiracula" as cover art, surfaced as a legal release at the Midem festival in Cannes, adding that a fan showed it to Jarre himself after a concert believing it to be a genuine release. Since then it’s still on sale on websites such as Amazon, eBay, Discogs and several on line music stores. Many Jarre collectors considered it a special Warner release thanks to its very professional and stylish packaging, even though the cover art isn’t properly credited: on the rear there’s only the nickname of an elusive designer called “Rider”, and the logo of the illegal Russian label “Star mark” specialized in greatest hits series (as explained on Discogs Star Mark).

Obviously, I never got any request of authorization for reproduction from
this Russian label before or after the release of this digipack, and I never got any kind of economic or symbolic compensation for the intellectual property rights abuse.
Both me and Duncan Walls tried to point out this copyright infringement to Jarre's management and Warner staff but to no avail. Jarre is also the current president of CISAC, the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers: it’s interesting to point out that during one of his recent conferences he said something that directly relates to my case:

”There’s something wrong when the advertising world and fashion world
are stealing graphics and patterns from the Aborigines, from the Fiji
Islands, from Africa, without paying anything – just because they can’t
identify the author. You are weakening the identity of some communities
step by step. This has to change (...) For us [older creators] it’s more
or less okay, because we started our careers when nothing was really
organized. It was a golden age, in a sense. Now, for a young creator,
it’s very difficult. There is no economy, there is no funding (...) So
how can an artist talk about the money and the remuneration he should
get. So many artists are being abused, and when they become recognized
they are abusing the system themselves, as a kind of revenge. It’s
better to not talk about money, but the value of intellectual property".

From time to time people post this album cover on Facebook, Youtube and forums as a rare piece of their albums collection. When I can notice it, all I can do is declaring that the painting is my original creation (aside of JarreUK feature, my authorship is proven by the animated video using that painting released on my Youtube channel in 2007) adding that I never gave my authorization to use that artwork to pirates, and that I never got any income from this illegal release, despite the fact it seems dangerous to me to try crediting a cover art printed on a pirate release since somehow I could be considered a pirate myself, or at least accused of using as a self-promotion an illegal product infringing the rights of Jarre's music and Warner company.

Therefore I never got any real promotion from this art theft (as someone wrote me saying that this digipack helped to increase the popularity of my art) since the people selling these copies are earning money by abusing and exploiting my painting as well as Jarre's music. The crucial difference is that, while Jarre is a rich international artist with a 40 years career who can rely on managers and agents and isn’t really damaged by some bootlegs or illegal digipacks as long as they correctly print his name on the cover, I’m a young free lance multimedia artist unable to adequately protect my copyrights when an ANONYMOUS illegal organization steals my art on line.
Two years ago a friend of mine suggested me to consult a lawyer but he just wanted my money in order to send letters in Russian and English languages, despite he was perfectly aware that it’s practically impossible to ask for compensation from an anonymous illegal label without any address or registered office.
Last summer I’ve even managed to personally meet Jarre before his Italian concert in Rome and I was able to give him the artbook I’ve released in 2008 containing some of the artworks inspired by his music, including obviously the “Spiracula” painting used for the Star Mark digipack. We couldn’t discuss that problem due to lack of time and so far I didn’t receive any further message from him or his management. I’m quite sure that neither him nor his company or CISAC are able to deal with this kind of situation, but nevertheless I would have appreciated some form of symbolic consideration in this regard.

Despite all this story, I’m still keen to keep posting my art on line through all my social profiles as I cannot simply remove all the content shared so far on line now, hoping that galleries or art collectors will watch my portfolio via unsolicited emails or in person. Actually over the last 15 years I’ve visited hundreds of galleries between USA and Europe and the majority didn’t accept to evaluate a portfolio provided directly by the artist, as many prefer to find new artists on the web or by visiting other shows according to their exhibiting policy. Some of the group exhibitions I’ve joined, as well as the London one where I’ve exhibited the “Spiracula” painting in 2007, were reached thanks to my presence on several social networks.

In 2014 the design of an 18 years old unknown Egiptian artist, Ahmed Emad Eldin, posting his works on the art portfolio Behance website (where I’ve uploaded a portfolio as well Behance) has been selected by the Pink Floyd creative team to provide the concept for the cover of the latest Pink Floyd’s album “The Endless River” after its director Aubrey Powell discovered and liked one of his images on that website.

Probably it has been just a lack of good luck on my side. In fact, it’s quite annoying to think that if Jarre or his creative team, just like the Pink Floyd team, would have endorsed or officially used in some way my painting or my concept, specially after realizing that people love it so much and connect it to his music (exactly like it happened for the famous Michel Granger’s cover art of the first “Oxygene” that his then girlfriend Charlotte Rampling bought after seeing it in a Paris gallery ) maybe now I wouldn’t regret posting it on JarreUk: I’m sure the Star Mark label would have never “stolen” it if they didn’t know that it was inspired and conceived for the anniversary of Oxygene (I suspect those pirates presumed that Jarre paid me for creating the painting).

(A fan from Ireland created this cover art and news collage adding also my artwork instead of the Granger’s art, as he apparently liked it so much to consider it an official Jarre’s cover).

So I think that your decision of sharing on line your artworks depends by the way you approach the web and by what you want to achieve with your creative activity, being conscious of all the dangers and the advantages it may offer. Unfortunately the main issue regarding the copyright infringement is a huge system “glitch” transcending the web that many young or not so well renowned creators will never fix if international organizations and cultural institutions will not develop an alternative economic model to protect and sustain them.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

The path of the Turtle Bell - Return to Mike Oldfield's Ommadawn

Looking for the path of the Turtle Bell (thanks a lot Gordon Mikefield for this specimen of Ommadawn cartography I got this morning from Virgin Records).

Famous British guitarist and composer Mike Oldfield has selected my artwork "Slitzweitz" created under the synaesthetic effect of his album "Ommadawn" as one of the winners of his competition #Ommadrawn launched in Januay 2017 on the occasion of the release of its sequel "Return to Ommadawn". It's the very first time that I won a competition thanks to my multimedianic art.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

"New York, a venture" at "Movies4movies"


The winter edition of the new "Movies4movies" film festival will premiere "New York, a venture" the next February 25 at the Dobbs Ferry public library, New York. More news to come very soon.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017



Alessandro Fantini directed the mystery movie "New York, a venture" (the third chapter of his "The Hidden Cities Mind trilogy") between New Jersey and Manhattan during the summer of 2014 so it's quite meaningful and riveting that it will be premiered close to its locations at the Dobbs Ferry public library, 21.6 miles away from the Bryant park library and 17.0 miles away from The Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine. Don't miss the opportunity to watch it for the first time on the big screen of the first edition of "Movies4movies" film festival.


"New York, a venture" will screen at the Dobbs Ferry public library on February 25 at 11:30 after the short-movie The Tell-Tale Heart – Sisters by Christine Parker.


Movies4movies is a film festival founded by filmmaker Natalie Sena Murray committed to providing opportunities for filmmakers to show their work and to supporting independent film by providing grants to filmmakers. The first installment of movies4movies will be held on Saturday, February 25 at the Dobbs Ferry Public Library. This one day festival will feature programming that includes feature films, short films, and documentaries as well as networking opportunities.

More info on

Thursday, February 2, 2017

"New York, a venture" will premiere in...New York (obviously)

The fateful event has arrived.

The next February 25 at the Dobbs Ferry public library, New York, the first edition of  "Movies4movies" film festival will premiere my indie movie "New York, a venture" filmed in New Jersey and Manhattan. 

More news to come very soon.


Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Deeps of Gorgonia


Alessandro Fantini

"Deep of Gorgonia" from the upcoming album Gorgonia (2017)

 Into and beyond the deep of pleasure. 

 After exploring the deeps of pain and sorrow with "Antalgica", I think it's quite time to get deep into the neverending chasms of pleasure.

This is an excerpt of "Deeps of Gorgonia" one of the tracks from my new concept album "Gorgonia".

A new album conceived and composed by Alessandro Fantini. Cover art: detail from "The nights of Alcandia", oil on canvas, AFAN(2015)

Tuesday, January 3, 2017