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In the studio with Giampiero Abate: the making of GRAVITATIONAL WAVE

In this studio visit, we see behind the scenes with Italian artist Giampiero Abate as he takes us through his process to create his mixed media artwork, “Gravitational Wave”. Adept using the more traditional material of graphite, Giampiero’s works often elevate the use of chiaoscuro with a nod to the Renaissance masters to create a sense of reality and depth. Additionally, however, he is also as skilled with the more unusual technique of painting using an airbrush tool. Transferring acrylic paint through this contemporary technique – a technique he describes as “AeroDrawing” – helps to create subtle layers which capture lighting and textures in a playful yet accurate manner.

This blend of traditional and contemporary tools create the unique works which form Giampiero Abate’s signature aesthetic. Thematically, his portfolio explores multiple ideas, but the overarching use of bodily poses and symbolism allows Giampiero to express human emotions and philosophical ideas in a boldly visual way.

As with many artists who use symbolism, it can help to learn more about the artist’s process, both conceptually and practically, to see how a spark comes to fruition. We are delighted to share this little peek behind the curtain: welcome to the world of Giampiero Abate.

Giampiero Abate: the making of “GRAVITATIONAL WAVE”

Giampiero-Abate-studio
Giampiero Abate – in the studio

Following my research into physics, astronomy, philosophy, esotericism and an investigation on the role of Man within the universe and with nature, in this “AeroDrawing”, I was inspired by the “Gravitational Waves”.

When I think of a track: I like to study to understand the topic well and to find ideas.
So, in the meantime I do some sketches and look for references to study the composition. If I like the composition, I work using Photoshop to build a final images, and prepare for the transfer to the media.

For this piece I worked with a gray tonal paper, charcoal, graphite and, of course, airbrush with acrylic paint.

Step 1

I transfer the project to paper and start the adventure! 

Giampiero-Abate-001

Step 2

I choose to start with the hair, using charcoal pencils as well as a brush and smudge to be uniform and precise. Precision is needed!

Giampiero-Abate-WIP-charcoal

Step 3

I continue drawing the figure in the same way.

In the meantime, I listen to music, but also audio books and videos of physics and astronomy conferences on YouTube. For me, these are the best inspirations to keep me inspired while working on this painting.

Giampiero-Abate-studio-wip

Step 4

While sharing these images step by step, I should explain more about “Gravitational Wave” and how to further connect with the drawing.

The “Gravitational Wave” is a disturbance of space-time, conceived in 1916 by Albert Einstein as part of his General Theory of Relativity. These gravitational waves can be generated by a cosmic phenomenon of particular intensity, in which enormous masses vary their distribution during, for instance, the explosion of a supernova, or in the collision of objects such as neutron stars and black holes. It’s like the shock wave from an explosion.

Scientifically, these variations on Earth modify things to the extent of an atom.
But are we sure that we are not somehow influenced by them?

Can they influence, for example, communications and relationships between humans? And what if they affect the mind?

Giampiero-Abate-work-in-progress

Step 5

And so, while I immerse myself in my thoughts, I continue to draw with the pencil and the charcoal dust, with shadow and brushes. When more or less the figure is defined, as well as her drapery, I dedicate myself to the “distortion” that generates the wave.

Giampiero-Abate-Gravitational-Wave-portrait

Step 6

And then, finally, I take my airbrush and start defining the volumes, using an acrylic white. Now the shapes have their three-dimensionality, and everything makes more sense.

Giampiero-Abate-airbrush
Giampiero-Abate-007

Step 7

Now I deal with the representation of the frequency and the cosmos on the right, always starting with the charcoal for the black base of the figure.

Giampiero-Abate-Gravitational-Wave-mixed-media

Step 8

Once the background has also been defined, I resume my acrylic airbrush technique. It is always with white and neutral gray variations that I create sparkles and bright lights.

Giampiero-Abate-studio-wip-gravitational-wave

Step 9

Finally, all of the details, the balance of tones, corrections and various cleanings are complete. In short, I have added all of those finishes that are needed to reach the conclusion.

Giampiero-Abate-charcoal-shading

At the end

My painting entitled “Gravitational Wave” is complete.

Thank you to those who have dedicated your time to see how my artistic process works, from the idea to completion. My idea is to do a little bit of reflecting and stimulating research, and the study, while maintaining easy reading styles and techniques.

Giampiero-Abate-Gravitational-Wave
“GRAVITATIONAL WAVE” Charcoal and Airbrush acrylic on Toned Paper, 70x50cm (2023).

To see more of Giampiero’s works and keep up to date with his latest adventures, follow him in the links below!

Giampiero Abate Social Media Accounts

Website | Facebook | Instagram

About Author

Based in the UK, Natalia Joruk lives amongst a mass of art, nature, curious trinkets and green tea. As Deputy Editor, she works closely with the Editor-in-Chief, supporting with the design, curation and overall growth of Beautiful Bizarre and the annual Beautiful Bizarre Art Prize. She also oversees distribution of the magazine, so drop her a line if you know someone who would like to stock! One of her favourite perks is getting to know artists, gallery owners and their teams personally, so feel free to email her if there is anything she can help you with – or just to connect!

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