In the Studio with Sara Rainoldi

In the studio with Sara Rainoldi, a visual artist whose practice explores the algorithms depicted from social media, developing a series of fashion magazines paintings which led to Sara's recognition within the fashion industry. We met with Sara to tell us more about growing up in Buenos Aires, what inspired her to first pursue her artistic journey, and Sara's greatest influences.

When did you first begin to see yourself as an artist?

I can’t really remember this, painting has always been part of who i am. my first memories as a child are about coloring a book or organizing my pencils by their size or colour, but it wasn’t until I was around 13-14 that I decided I wanted to pursue an art career.

 Where are you from and what was your upbringing like?

I’m from Buenos Aires, Argentina. Both my parents are really into art, my father paints and has a lovely collection of art books which I used to look at while growing up and then my mom loves opera’s so we would often go to concerts, ballets or museums.

 I believe this has impacted my work a lot, the fact that I was introduced to artists from such early age and had the chance to discuss those works with my father really made me question and build a way of thinking, especially around colour which is what all our discussing are usually about. Moreover, I also listen to a lot of classical music when i’m developing an idea or painting, it calms my nerves!

Paint us a picture of your artistic journey. What inspired you to first pursue, and then continue to practice artistic work? 

Definitely watching ‘Pollock by Pollock’ when I was 12. I joined my father who was watching it one Sunday afternoon and I was astonished by how free he looked while making those dropping paintings.  I remember thinking that if there was a future in which I could dance, smoke and feel that way then that’s what I wanted to persue! 

Then during my secondary years I kind of wanted to be a fashion designer instead but I ended up going into Art School in Buenos Aires and I think it was the best decision I ever made. Probably when I was contacted by Gucci to reinterpret one of their prints and then they bought the image rights. That felt lovely considering I was only 20.

What’s the message of your work? Where do they come from? 

I consider my paintings to be in constant motion, meaning they are constantly mutating and  anything that happens makes me consider changing my approach. The  first lockdown for example really made me change my perspective, considering life went online and I had no access to physical libraries anymore, I immersed myself onto digital content and wondered how my painting practice would survive this. I must say that what super interests me is the place of painting materiality within the 0-1 spectrum. how will it survive the speed of swiping and scrolling  and how traditional painting languages survive the metaverse, the place of human gesture within 0-1 binary codes, I will bring into place how painting merges and adapts with these digital constraints.

The technique comes form a dream I had back in 2014 where I was painting on top of my fashion magazines. I remember waking up from that dream and thinking I should start doing it. I would describe my aesthetic as very personal.

 I consider my paintings to be born inside the digital, I digitally manipulate images which I later print and rework with painting on top. I’m an expressionist painter.

Who & what are your greatest influences?  

Willem de Kooning, Jackson Pollock Romulo Maccio, Jorge Demirjian.

What do you want people to take from your work when they view it?

The colour as it’s what I enjoy the most while making them. I try not to think about the audience much.

What events in your life have mobilised change in your practise/aesthetic? 

Moving to the UK and the pandemic.  the light here is mesmerising, I’m definitly sure it has affected the way I create and view colours. And the pandemic led me to take my practice online and view it form another perspective. Going into online libraries and accessing a vast amount of information that before I wouldn’t really consume.

What are your ideal conditions or catalyst for creating a “good” piece of work?

Just working hard! No tengo una condicion o manera, toda buena obra requiere tiempo de estudio y practica. 

I think one should never approach a work with that mentality because it will only limit your work. Worling and thinking this hsould be a good work only makes me frustrated and wanting to leave the studio. I think its more about trying and exploring the medium and the possiblities materiality has.

Something in the future you hope to explore?