Porn is boring.

-GASM is not.

Alfio Martire – When our intimate fantasies can be summoned by a song

When did you decide to start sharing your art on Instagram? And how did it go in the beginning?

I remember I was not having the best time of my life.
I was a second year student of the Comics school of Rome and my closest friends had been pushing me for a while to go public.

It was a time in which there were just a few Italian illustrators managing social profiles entirely dedicated to their creations, and I was just experimenting with my first artworks with indie-music lyrics within.

I also remember that the most famous Instagram pages doing that kind of work were just picking curated content from international artists, so I told myself “Why not?”

Many of your works show a fil rouge between erotic art, music, cinema and poetry. From where does your creative process spark?

I believe erotic art is shaped from an endless serie of external stimuli on a daily basis, and while it might be true that our emotional world is an inner world, those same emotions can be communicated through various forms of art.

The emotions working as fuel for our most intimate fantasies can be summoned by a song, which can bring a specific memory of the past, like when we were in a car with some girl, raining falling on the glass, and Steve Wonder on the radio at the same time.

On the other hand they could be summoned by a movie scene we watched while being on the couch with that same girl we could not resist to.

The same works for poetry: I really love “Tanka” by Akiko Yosano, which is one of the most ancient forms of Japanese poetry, that lights me up whenever I read.

I believe this sinesthesia between feelings, colours and sounds, is the largest erogenous zone of our minds.

Favorite movie, favorite musician, favorite poet?

My favorite movie is Easy Rider – 1969 with Herny Fonda and Dennis Hopper. I’m super fascinated by that historical context, especially because of its cult of the search for freedom, literary, political and stylistic.

I’ve always been fascinated by the concept of freedom and its most profound meaning.

There’s a specific moment during that movie, in which the two main characters say: “… but speaking about freedom and being free are two different things…” and I find this quote very relevant even 50 years later.

As with cinema, also my favorite musician is from the same period: John Fogerty, the frontman of Creedence Clearwater Revival, one of the most influential yet less known bands of that time. And if I had to go to Italy, I would say Lucio Battisti.

Concerning poetry: it is very hard for me to classify works in poetry, but I really like Cesare Pavese’s poems. I believe “Verrà la morte e avrà I tuoi occhi” is one of the best poetry I’ve ever read.

Do you happen to put details from your life within your artworks?

Most of my creations and what I write along them is a way to tell my own story through lines, forms and colours.

I actually spent most of my life keeping everything inside of me.

Hiding from myself and fearing other people’s judgement.

But now I can use my pencil with ease, and everything I experience, live, do, love, think, feel with my heart or either my dick, I put into it.

I realised my art could be appreciated by other people when Playboy USA decided to pick one of my artworks (among very few others) to be featured on their official Instagram Profile.

That was the moment I started believing even more in what I was doing.

How would you define eroticism?

To me, eroticism is a place where mind and spirit bond with the pleasure of the flesh, without any prejudice, and where the deepest love and the most wild sex can poetically coexist.

I realize many people still fear living naturally with their eros, and that’s why they lose sight of the most important thing, that sex is meant free manifestation, passionate and sensual, of their own instinct, united with a personal and romantic vision of their own “perversions”.

The best part of every fantasy that is born within us.

They need to be lived through and deeply until the fullfilment of the senses, without fear.

Eroticism is essentially relational, and implies, even if just within our immagination, the presence of the other.

Coming back from Berlin I learned about German philosophers and I casually stumbled upon Georg Simmel, a sociologist of the late 800′, that said:

… Eroticism is maybe the privileged, most vertiginous and engaging form of our lives, in all its declinations. Sex, for example, is a creative act through which man and woman shape each other: they don’t simply eliminate distance between each other, but they blend into something unique and distinctive. They truly shape each other. You cannot love just with one part of your body, you cannot use just your genital organs, but you remain completely involved in it. Lovers could separate again, but they will never go back being who they were before…”

There it is, I believe precisely in what Simmel said.

How does it feel to know there are people around the world possessing your artworks?

It is something I’m very proud of.

I shipped some of my works to Australia, Russia, Brasil, just the other day.

This means to me that emotions are universal and eroticism and erotic art deserve the same dignity of cinema and comics. Just look at what Tinto Brass, Bigas Luna or Milo Manara and Crepax have been doing.

Art gets perceived in the same way all across the globe; that’s why we may have different political, sexual, religious orientations, but within our intimacy, we live and think in the same way.

 

What are you working on right now?

I recently launched my official website, thanks to my girlfriend’s help (I would have never made it without her).

I am also working on an artwork for an international contest for illustrators, dealing with a very delicate topic.

Plus, I’m reviewing my online shop so I can make the experience more clear and accessible since marketing has never been my thing
: P

Would you recommend us some interesting profiles you follow?

It’s very difficult to see the authenticity of works circulating on Instagram today, because censorship kinda limits how much you can express yourself, and also you sometimes bump into pages actually copy-pasting other people’s works and claiming them, so there’s an actual risk of falling into conformism and stereotypes.

Thanfully there are a lot of incredible artists like Yssa, Petites Luxures, Apollonia Saintclaire and Frida Castelli which I admire so much.

I consider their raffiguration of eroticism as the most sensual and suggestive I’ve ever seen.

When you look at their illustration you can feel a peculiar vibration within you, and it means that picture just hit the mark.

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Did you enjoy this interview? 😉

 

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