Andrea’s art is provocative and ironic, a punch in people’s face that leads to realizing the most immediate essence of politics, through images.
Andrea Villa is an ascending Italian street artist from Torino. His art, a critic of society, perfectly depicts the horrors of current politics by framing it in an ironic, almost satiric way. Newspapers have often called him “the Italian Banksy” because of his artwork, imprinted at anonymous but efficient critics of society. He mostly works with posters, at first sight they may look like normal commercials, but after giving a second looks it’s possible to realize that you are seeing Salvinias Hitler, or Che Guevara as a model.
We have interviewed Andrea to know more about his art, in an era where art is considered by many people as less relevant while being a fantastic tool to express opinions in ways that can be understood by everyone.
When did your interest in art start?
AV: I have always been involved with art, mine was an attempt to add value to the voice of millennials in a world where “old politicians” had a strong voice, while we did not. It was also a way to bring art on the same level of everyday people, through irony and images.
What do you think of the current Italian political situation?
AV: The Italian political situation mirrors those who created it, the electors, therefore fault is not unilateral. I consider my art as a parody, satire is a destructive critic, my art plays on high and low-level language, trash and irony.
Do you find it annoying to be called “the Italian Banksy?”
AV: I absolutely do not compare myself to Banksy and I take the distances from those who do that, being a ploy to sell newspapers.
Who is a political figure that you admire?
AV: Joseph Beuys, he was an artist but also the creator of the German’s Greens, he has proven that you can do politics by being an artist and a revolutionary.
Tell me about kill your idol, my favorite posters of yours.
AV: “Kill Your Idol” represents the iconoclastic of the revolutionary ideology: a whole ideological movement has been reduced and diminished in an image to put on cigarette’s packs and t-shirts. The media’s world reduces meanings to a simple single dimension. An “object of the media” it’s easier to read, and it is easier to capitalize. This way, people remember Che Guevara because he’s cool, not because of what he fought for.
For example, look at me, I became the “Turin Banksy” because it is a spectacular name for newspapers’ headlines, and this mediatic game allowed me to gain something at the monetary level. My work is not represented by the manifests themselves, but rather by how they are interpreted and used by society.
Also read: spaghettipolitics2.
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Michela Grasso is a 19-year-old political science student at the University of Amsterdam. Her main occupation, besides studying and working in a sad Asian restaurant, is to rant about Italian politics. She runs a politics page on Instagram called @spaghettipolitics, where comments and insights on the latest news in Italian politics can be found.