Le Cretine – “perfect imperfections” art

“Le Cretine”, an Italian duo that works with clay and many other materials. Let’s dive into clay’s malleability creating countless shapes, and then being inevitably led into such perfect imperfections.

What does “rebirth” mean to you, and what do you associate this concept with?

“Rebirth” by definition means leaving first existence behind. For us, it is a strictly personal concept we felt the need to belong to something extremely free and creative. “It is not enough to be born. It is to be born again that we were born. Every day,” said Pablo Neruda. And so, quite spontaneously, any afternoon of a spring whatever, Cretine took shape. A fluid space in which matter is shaped in its declinations. Rebirth is, therefore, a constant investigation of organic shapes that start a new life. Imperfect but unique pieces.

What are the inspirations/ inspiring artists for your works? 

Given the fact that two personalities like ours (Cretines’ founders) work together is itself a source of mutual inspiration we are lucky enough to live every single day.
In addition, just sneaking into our private lives will make you realise that the typical 70s irreverence massively impacts our works – not for the form but for the purposes. Videotapes, fanzines and graphics are a 1970 symbol that expresses the sense of freedom in the wake of pop culture. Ettore Sottsass and Gaetano Pesce’s alien and cosmic worlds are truly a point of reference for us. As Sottsass stated: “Design is not limited to the need to lend more or less form to a stupid product “[…] but it must be a metaphor for who we are, among eroticism, design, music and food. In addition, if you really can’t find inspiration, a documentary about ocean wonders is always a good idea.

Tell us more about your artistic background and studies.

We are two little idiots (in Italian: “cretine”), and this is what we have in common. However, we have two distinct studies: Architecture and Visual Arts. These two educational backgrounds provided us with a method too tied to digital; for this reason, we felt the need to dedicate ourselves to works way closer to reality.

Clay works are often called “perfect imperfections”, as they do not have a “standard” shape and each one is a unique piece, different from the others. One won’t ever get two identical pieces. How come the choice to work this material? Why do you prefer clay over other materials? 

Clay was our first love. It seems that it was the clay itself that chose us, as a result of lucky circumstances. Its malleability represents a double-edged sword: it can assume countless forms, but these will never actually be as you conceived them. This inevitably leads to imperfections; why not? First love never dies, but we have not precluded ourselves from experimenting with other materials. Not that clay was missing something, but the desire to create new combinations and new possibilities is an instinct that we cannot keep under control.

Show us your favourite job. Would you mind telling us its story and any anecdotes behind its creation? 

If our favourite artefact were a person, it would be called Polyurethane. Polyurethane has this bulky, but mild disposition; it can be hostile if one decides to control it. Polyurethane can be unpredictable and stubborn and this is why you can’t help yourself. It is sufficient to be distracted for a moment to find it on any existing surface, even on the cat. Because of Polyurethane’s intrusive personality, we realised that it could have been the right “person” to play the leading role of one of our installations.


Get to know more about Le Cretine, here!


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