The Q&A: Cristina Spano

By Peggy Roalf   Monday May 22, 2017

Q: Originally from the Eternal City, what are some of your favorite things about living and working in Spain?

A: I’m from Rome but now I live in Barcelona, in the Gracia neighborhood. I relly like it here because there are a lot of small plazas and every weekend there is a festival of some kind, such as food fairs, concerts, street markets, etc. It make me feel like I live in a village instead of a big city.

Q: Do you keep a sketchbook? What is the balance between art you create on paper [or other analog medium] versus in the computer?

A: I don’t have a sketchbook—I usually recycle paper sheets for sketching. I have a notebook where sometimes I draw, but I usually use it for keeping notes. I like doing crafts, cooking, gardening and ceramics. These things help me to separate from my computer and still be creative.

Q: What is the most important item in your studio?

A: It’s not an item but the studio itself. Originally, it was an old wine cellar, a popular spot in the neighborhood.



Q: How do you know when the art is finished?

A: I can’t really explain that. I just know that it is finished, it’s an instinct.

Q: What was your favorite book as a child?

A: I had a book about Paul Klee that my parents gave me as a child; I loved the colors and shapes.

Q: What is the best book you’ve recently read?

A: The last book I bought and that really has me obsessed is the Enzo Mari’s Autoprogettazione?, a compendium of 19 furniture designs you can build yourself, which Mari first published back in the seventies.

Q: If you had to choose one medium to work in for an entire year, eliminating all others, what medium would you choose?

A: Acrylic painting, because I want to improve my painting skills.



Q: What elements of daily life exert the most influence on your work practice?

A: The objects that surround me, and plants,

Q: What was the [Thunderbolt] painting or drawing or film or otherwise that most affected your approach to art? 

A: My great-grandfather was a painter and sculptor, and his work and ability to create things always amazed me. Another thing that shaped me as an artist was that, when I was a child, I used to make dresses for my dolls, together with my grandmother. 

Q: Who was the [Thunderbolt] teacher or mentor or visiting artist who most influenced you early in your training or career?

A: It has never been only one person, but through the influence of different people. A little bit from my school teachers, a pinch from my colleagues…

Q: What would be your last supper?

A: Pasta all’amatriciana, definitely.

Cristina Spanò studied graphic design at ISIA Urbino in Italy and Illustration at EINA in Barcelona, where she currently lives. She regularly collaborates with newspapers, magazines and publishing houses doing illustrations, comics and books for adults or children. Her work was selected for the Bologna Book Fair exhibition (2017), American Illustration 35 annual (2016), and she won the Merit award at 3×3 Annual Picture Book Show n.12 (2015).


No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now