Based in Turin, Italy, Massimo Polello has worked as a calligrapher artist for over fifteen years. Since studying calligraphy, he has explored its classical and contemporary applications and potentiality in art and graphic design. These include designing packaging and signage logos for companies, museums and individuals, as well as applying his designs to walls and for interiors design.
He sums up his approach to calligraphy best, “…letters become a means to exist outside myself… going beyond the letters, captured by a sole need to see. They become signs, images, evocations, urgent needs, emotions.”
He has exhibited, led workshops internationally: USA, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, Canada, Pakistan, Japan, France, Germany, Spain, Belgium, England,… and he worked on several short films, and is a contributor to Graphicus, TipoItalia and Letters Arts Review magazines.
He took part and invited at International Type Designer Conference in Moscow and Istanbul and at the ATypI International Type Designer Conference 2015 in San Paolo-Brasil and taught in seminary at the New York Visual Art School and Concordia University Montreal, Reed Dear College Calgary,
He published “Traité de la peinture-Extraits” with Editions Alternatives Publisher-Paris and worked with artist and film-maker as Peter Greenaway in “Peopling the Palace” and with the director Luca Ronconi to the installation of the of 150th Anniversary exhibition of the Unification of Italy, “La Bella Italia” http://youtu.be/o97eJUAc6Gg
Actually is the President of Turin calligraphers´ guild “Dal Segno alla Scrittura” and owner of Studio Gallery ABC_Atelier and collaborated with the Medicea Laurenziana Library in Florence.
Internationally, Massimo Polello is currently the best known Italian calligrapher.
Over recent years he has taken part in major competitions of world standing, given workshops and training on calligraphy and displayed his work in collective and solo national and international exhibitions.
After studying the traditional calligraphic styles, Polello geared his personal quest towards the artistic expression of this discipline by creating his own language and an ontologically expressive approach aimed at imparting the culture of calligraphic art in a contemporary idiom.
In Polello’s works the alphabet transcends the typical functionality of the written language and its relative symbolic and abstract value by becoming an image that confers value to the shape and gesture of the sign.
The calligraphic work is no longer a representation but an interaction between the artist, time and memory.
Polello therefore does not restrict himself to the use of traditional techniques, perfectly mastered with a very personal style, but supplements them with expressive media such as videos and projections. By embracing such technology and the art of live performance, he is thus in very close touch with the contemporary artistic avant-garde
By dint of this approach, Polello frees calligraphic art from its bi-dimensionality, placing it in a creative dynamic context and bestowing upon it a monumentality that dovetails with time and space.
Polello superimposes on classic calligraphic techniques stylistic experimentations which are embellished by the use of innovative materials such as resins, varnishes, and unconventional media. Moving away from the stereotyped use of paper and canvasses, he is always on the look-out for recycled materials to which he likes to confer a new identity.
Text written by Alexia Rizzi