Giotto Calendoli, the Italian artist who founded Handle With Freedom, made time to share with me some of his great thoughts, and as the result of our conversation, here we have the exclusive interview he gave to Vanity Teen.
If have been following the work of mister Calendoli, you would probably know his art pieces, crafts, and clothing are fueled by positivity and every time he shows up is to make a statement and nothing less.
I invite you to keep reading and enjoy this virtual tête-à-tête with the one and only Giotto Calendoli.
Q: Nowadays creativity is an important topic, even some authors want to make it part of children’s curricula in schools. Knowing you do not define yourself as an artist but as a creative person, how do you define creativity? What are the implications you find between creativity, freedom, method, and discipline?
Creativity is not studied, it is trained; in fact, I agree to include programs in schools where children can express themselves by creating, especially at such an age where the brain absorbs like a sponge.
My creativity is my head, and my eyes always open wider turning my thoughts into something with a soul.
The connection between creativity, freedom, method, and discipline, in one example, is as if it were a compound family from mother father brother, and grandmother, the blood is the same, the basics too.
Q: What do you mean when saying you live by your own terms?
I mean that your choice is your choice.
It’s like making a dress made to measure that no one else besides you can wear it perfectly. The rest is nothing more than a copy of a trend that will not be yours because it has already been done.
Q: In 2019 Handle With Freedom (HWF) was released, then 2020 came to change the world we knew, how do you consider this new era affected the message of your label?
For me, 2020 was like a puzzle on a table that took a long time and was never understood; too many incomplete pieces. Now the first puzzle is complete, I am starting the second and then starting the third, and so on.
Q: HWF is full of positive messages? One of them is affirming the future is ECO, what does that mean?
Negativity is not part of HWF‘s DNA. The future is to design, reuse, give a second chance to something that might consume and pollute. It is a continuous challenge with oneself; giving even if in a small way a contribution to the universe.
We must always give a second chance in life, but above all, give a second chance to waste. To be open-minded to the possibility of continuously accepting new challenges, to be able to give a new breath, a new beginning.
Hence, we believe in second chances, to reuse something that goes unnoticed or taken by old, ugly, and used. Like a nerdy kid growing up into a cool guy.
Mom’s drop is a capsule where my mother embroidered T-shirts with needles and thread. My dream has always been to be able to create a family business, so since today, my future family has yet to arrive; I started to set the foundations using what is the passion and love of my mother in making embroidery, learning something that she has never done before.
Q: Let us talk about representation and media, you have been promoting body positivity; according to you, why this and other issues are important in arts and in the fashion industry?
Being yourself, trying to communicate who you really are, what you really want to do in your life, I believe are the most important things for any type of industry.
If you are not positive it means not having a personality, being unsure of yourself, something that I notice more and more in an increasingly digital generation, more and more focused on searching for perfection. But perfection sucks, imperfection is us making mistakes and standing up with a smile.
Q: I have seen you also have been giving the message of loving yourself and expressing yourself. Would you say to teenagers that expression is a way of showing self-love?
If you don’t love yourself firstly, you can’t love anything.
A rock star lent to the world of sports. A real genius!
Q: If 2020 was a person, what would you like to tell to his (or her) face?
I’d give him a kick on the back making room for 2021.
Q: Anything else you would like to share with Vanity Teen?
Do NOT put pineapple on pizzas. GRAZIE!
Before we go
What a delightful conversation! I really enjoyed Mister Calendoli’s words and his funny and lovely but yet powerful message. That is maybe why we feel so attracted to his work and all the things he posts on his Instagram account.
Let us always remember to give second chances and handle things with freedom. We do not have two worlds, and the one we have deserves the best versions of ourselves.