We are always doing fun events for members here at Tiburón Golf Club, and last week was no exception. We had Marco Bronzini here for a meet and greet. Marco is a local artist and runs the Marco Bronzini Art School & Studio. While he was here he answered questions, did a painting demonstration, and impressed members with his in-depth knowledge of the arts. Our members really enjoyed it I wanted to learn more about him. Marco agreed to an interview and it was fun learning more about him, his style and his education. Marco graduated from the Royal Academy of Arts, London, has written two books and creates some breathtaking pieces of art. This was a fun interview! It is my pleasure to introduce you to Marco Bronzini.
Tell me more about how you got started and your obvious love for the arts?
I have been drawing since I could hold a pencil. My school books were covered with pictures, which got me in trouble for not paying attention to the teacher. At age sixteen I was fortunate to be introduced to John Skeaping, a British sculptor, who took me under his wing. I see everything through the prism of art. Artists are given the gift of seeing things other people miss. It’s a real blessing.
Where are you from?
I was born in Provence, in the South of France. My mother is French and my father was Italian. My early works were influenced by the Provencal light and its beauty.
There are a lot of great art museums in the world. What are some of your favorite art galleries to visit?
They are at least 5 or 6 great museums in the world. My favorites are The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Musée d’Orsay in Paris.
Do you sell your work or prints of your work?
I sell my work, both originals and prints. I always sold my work, even as a student, I never had to do anything else. I used to be in several art galleries, but I no longer have to. Clients come to my studio, which is much more fun for the potential buyer, as well as cheaper than going through a gallery.
Tell me more about your time at the Royal Academy of Arts in London.
I first went to the Royal Academy in September 1975. London was a great place to be then, far less busy than today, and much more affordable. The Academy was a like a sanctuary in the big city, quiet and inspiring. Dating back from the mid-eighteen century, one really felt a sense of history within its walls – so many artists form the past walked through the same corridors and rooms as I did. I spent three years in the life drawing room drawing from models, and my final year, painting.
Do you ever make a mistake while painting a new piece?
There is really no such thing as a mistake, anything can be painted over. However, if I find something is not working, and this can happen often – as it is part of creating, then I like to think of it as a change of heart and not so much as correcting a mistake.
What is your favorite color?
I would have to say blue, though there are many of them, I’m narrowing it down to that single word.
Tell me more about the art classes you teach. Also, tell me more about the online art classes.
Though my classes have anything between fifteen and twenty people, I teach my students, not as group, but individually. Each student paints what they want to paint, what inspires them. I don’t teach them how to paint like me, which is a stupid approach many instructors have. Each student is unique, with particular needs. My goal is to bring out the talent buried inside each person, without trying to imitate anyone. Sure, we look at all the great artists, and maybe copy one or two paintings, but always keeping in mind the individuality of each student.
The online classes were designed for people who are not in Naples and want to study with me. There are several videos available.
What is The Ten Commandments of Fine Art?
The Ten Commandments of Fine Art is a book I wrote a few years ago. It deals mainly with figurative art, and it’s a good tool especially for the beginner artist. It’s basically the dos and don’t’s of fine art.
What advice would you give someone interested in learning how to paint?
“Learning how to paint” is a broad statement which is often misunderstood. My advice to the beginner artist is not to be concerned about what your style is, but rather learn how paint moves and what you are able to do with it. Also look at great artists and study their work.
How do you know Dame Kiri Te Kanawa?
I met Dame Kiri Te Kanawa several years ago, when she owned a home in Naples. We became friends through our mutual interest in the arts.
Where do you find inspiration for a new piece? Do you have an idea of what you want to paint or does it just come to you?
Each artist is inspired by different things. An idea for a painting can come from just about anything. I like to work on series, for example, I have a series I’m working on now which depicts a figure on a horse. I have painted a mother and child series, on and off, for the last thirty years.
When you start a new piece, how long does it typically take to complete?
I usually work on several pieces at a time. I like to let a painting dry between each session. Depending on the size of the work and the intricacy of it, completion can take anything form one hour to several weeks.
You have some impressive pieces of work in your portfolio. The style seems to remain consistent from one piece to the next. Tell me a little more about your portfolio. Do you have pieces of work that aren’t listed there?
It is my belief that an artist ought to go through a constant progression in the course of a lifetime. My early work was very impressionistic, but after forty years, it would be sad indeed if I had not moved on and simply kept “copying” myself. You just have to look at Cezannes’s early paintings for example and compare them with his last works to understand what I am saying. You could do the same with any of the great artists – Monet, Picasso, etc.
My website represents maybe 10% of my body of work.
I’ve spent a lot of time in Paris. France is a special place to me. Do you get back to Europe often?
I do go to France on regular basis. My entire family is there. I enjoy the beauty of the place as well as the great food of course and wine!
What’s next for Marco Bronzini?
Perhaps a new style! A revolution in the art world!
In all of the interviews I do, I always give the artist the last word. Go.
Throughout history, artists have been the witnesses who have chronicled the world’s events. History books would be very dull without those witnesses. Unfortunately now art has become commercialized and all kinds of so-called artists have come out of the woodwork, and unsuspecting art collectors with more money than good sense have fallen victim to some of the most outrageous deals worth at times millions of dollars.
I will end with a quote from my book The Ten Commandments of Fine Art. “Although painting can be a relaxing pastime, it requires concentration and discipline. Above all a painting must be good. Like anything that is worthwhile, art in all its forms cannot be taught nor appreciated in three easy steps, and unless one is sketching, a painting should be worked on over a period of days, not minutes. Let us not be kept ignorant on the subject. Begin to look at art with new eyes and a passionate heart for not only what is beautiful, but also what is good.”