Interview with Tiziana Maggio.

‘Spirit of beauty, where are thou gone? ‘

Tiziana_Maggio Art Consultancy London

In 1816, English poet Percy Shelley asked in his Hymn to Intellectual Beauty: ‘Spirit of beauty, that dost consecrate with thine own hues all thou dost shine upon of human thought or form, where are thou gone? ‘. Shelley came to find the answer in Italy. Now in 2018 I like to think that the answer has arrived in London with Tiziana Maggio and her boutique art consultancy specialised on sourcing art for the real estate sector, for residential and commercial spaces to enrich them with unique character and style. Tiziana is an independent art consultant, curator, writer for art magazines, and art enthusiast. Her passion is founded on her specialised studies in Fine Art and her work experience with the Italian Government. In London, she worked for a number of commercial galleries until she created her art consultancy as she explained to us.

-Tiziana, how and when was the idea for your art consultancy born? 

-Almost 6 years ago I realised there was a gap in the market. Almost everybody in the art industry was focussed on private collectors but no one was servicing the real estate professionals. Developers, real estate agents, interior designers were left to wander on Google images for inspiration, often leaving walls blank and spaces empty. I founded my art consultancy with the idea of bringing original art by talented emerging artists into the new commercial developments, offices and private properties in London. We all agree that having art in work spaces has recognised benefits in terms of productivity, mood and general well being. Yet, art can also enhance the economic value of property, facilitating its rental or sale. In terms of business model, our focus is on leasing original art that we also sell. Leasing is an excellent way for companies to avoid capex and having to commit to a piece that might be not the right fit in the long term.

In fact, many of our clients prefer to ‘rent & rotate’ such that their spaces are refreshed with new art on a regular basis.

-In Italy we are immersed in art on a daily basis, thanks to our rich artistic heritage. Is there a relationship between your agency and this Italian artistic immersion?

-If you grow up in Italy, you are used living, studying and working surrounded by incredible art. For example, my university courses were held in a beautiful XII Century monastery with stunning medieval frescos, whilst in the offices of the Italian government where I worked we were surrounded by XVII Century paintings from the Caravaggio’s school. With this in mind, I believe that with my consultancy I am aiming to bring back that everyday fascination for art, inherited from the Italian background, and enrich working and living spaces. Yet at the same time, it is a counter to Italy’s tendency to focus predominantly on the Old Masters. In fact, with my agency we promote and support talented emerging artists who hopefully will be the Masters of tomorrow.

-Art galleries are increasingly using online platforms to sell their works. Do they risk of becoming commoditize? Do you think that this digitisation is positive?

-According to Deloitte’s 2017 on Art and Finance report, the online art market continues to show resilience and further growth. In fact per the Hiscox ‘Online Art Trade Report 2017’ online art market sales reached an estimated US $3.75 billion in 2016, marking a 15% increase from 2015. This gave the online art market an estimated 8.4% share of the overall art market, up from 7.4% in 2015. Therefore these numbers show that art galleries are facing an unprecedented opportunity to connect with their audience on a global scale with relative ease. For example they can nurture relationships with and sell art to collectors all over the world with sites like Artsy. 

Yet by the same token, online platforms like Artfinder or Saatchi Art are equally giving the same opportunity to artists to sell directly to their followers. So, ironically the very thing that is supporting galleries, could be ultimately detrimental to them as the market disintermediates. At the end, this disruption in the art world echoes what we have seen in many sectors across the arts, including television and music with YouTube and iTunes.

-London has always been considered an international melting-pot. Is this still the case? Where do your artists come from and are you able to attract international clients?

-London has always fascinated and attracted artists and art lovers from all over the world for its wealth of exhibitions and opportunities. Brexit or not, London continues to be the beating heart of the art scene. My artists in fact have very international backgrounds: coming from Korea, Usa or Australia they have moved to London for either its top class colleges like the Royal College of Art and the Central St. Martin, or for the very unique residencies, like the ones at Gasworks Gallery and at the Acme studios, or for the valuable international exposure. I can say the same for our clients, well travelled art connoisseurs who value the idea of offering an international showcase of art in their properties and not least because their tenants or residents are themselves coming from all over the world and they definitely feel at home being surrounded by inspiring and cosmopolitan paintings or sculptures in their working and living spaces.

-Who are the artists that have recently caught your attention?

-In the last year I have been focusing my curatorial research on large scale work. I have been working with internationally acclaimed painter Anca Stefanescu: she brings a huge amount of mastery of digital colour theory and compositional elements from the computer screen to very big canvases, where she finishes up with strokes of oil paint full of energy. London based, she has been featured in numerous galleries and exhibitions from USA to Italy. I love her bright colours and captivating characters, women and animals, that populate her works. Another artist I am currently working with is Mexican-French-American Alicia Paz. Her paintings, collages and standing figures focus on the female form. Inhabiting fantastical and exotic landscapes, Paz’s feminine subjects become fused with organic life creating strange and unsettling visions of tree-women and monster-women. Paz’s work has been the subject of various catalogues and publications and has been reviewed internationally. I am always fascinated by her ethereal scenes where you can spot hidden messages and meanings and forms if you look closer.

Lucia Pulpo

Article published here

Giorgio di Palma

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A ceramist to watch out for: Interview with Giorgio di Palma, who is pushing ceramic forward

Just one heartfelt advice: remember his name. For his disruptive approach to the ceramic, we could define him the Damien Hirst of this craft, but actually to be more precise, Giorgio is like Damien before getting his god-like attitude and marketing power. In fact from his workshop in a tiny centre in the south of Italy, Giorgio is revolutionising his art.


Class 1981, he studied Archeology to then actually started working as IT technician. However, after few years he finally decided to listen to his true passion, the ceramic craft, and follow his call back home in the small town of Grottaglie, which actually is historically well known for its century old ceramic tradition. It is not a coincidence then that since he moved back home in 2010, Giorgio has been producing an incredible collection of ceramic art which are starting to attract interior designers and art collectors’ interests. His artistic statement is all about a personal and ironic approach: ‘I work my own way, without focusing on the technique, and I always avoid giving my objects a real function. I produce ceramic items which are not needed. In an era of excess and wastefulness, my aim is to create objects fallen into disuse, useless, but impossible to leave behind. They will outlive us, because now they are made of terracotta, hence immortal. Through a special time machine called ceramics I enjoy transforming the useless into the eternal and consecrating the moment.’

I have got to know Giorgio primarily via email and it immediately transpires how down to heart and committed this artist is.

Do you have a mentor in your professional and personal life?

In my life I have always been surrounded by people who inspired me, hence I don’t think I have ever had only one mentor. I might sound pretentious but I believe in myself so much that I could call myself the Giorgio di Palma’s mentor. This does not mean that I believe I can do anything I want.

With time I have learnt that in every craft and industry there are experts that could be my teachers and mentors. Hence if I want to make marinated anchovies I will ask for my mother’s instructions and if I want to create a complex ceramic piece, I will ask my father for some advice.

Who is a living artist you admire and you would collect?

My house and studio are full of art made by artists I was lucky enough to meet and get to know closely. I need to know the artist personally in order for me to collect his pieces, in fact behind every piece I have, there is a story to tell. Hence I would say I collect stories, not art.

What can you not stand in the art world?

I have to say I cannot stand the art world as a whole. I never wanted to call myself ‘artist’ and I always avoided the path of art galleries-collectors-price politics. 

Some of my pieces are displayed in museums where a wider audience can see them and enjoy them. However, I usually sell in my studio and in few selected shops: my buyers can be either the kid who needs to buy a gift for his aunt and the person who falls in love with a unique original piece.

What’s your biggest achievement so far in life and career?

Maybe my biggest one has been to came back and make a living in my hometown Grottaglie, in Southern Italy.

Are you interested in Italian politics?

Fundamentally no. I voted just three times in my life and I deeply regretted each time. I believe citizens can’t really decide on complex topics like vaccines, Euro, etc..There are designated people with specific expertise who know what and how to decide on those matters. We should just convince them to do that. Instead on ethical choice, rather economic-political matters, citizens should decide.

Where do you see yourself in 20 years?

I see myself ‘escaping’ from Italy often but also having Grottaglie as a base for me to come back.Like his ceramic lollipop and balloons, Giorgio is a straightforward and extremely enjoyable artist who can surprise you with a genuine approach that will definitely further his career in the directions of being internationally collected and unanimously acclaimed.

The EY Exhibition: Impressionists in London, Tate Britain


The EY Exhibition: Impressionists in London,    Tate Britain, London

by Tiziana Maggio

A very familiar story of talented people who had to flee to Britain to escape war in France

In Brexit times, this exhibition is a very useful reminder of how Britain was perceived by some talented people, threatened in their own countries. Britain was the place to be, to emerge and to be appreciated more than anywhere else in Europe at that time.

Nowadays, can we still say the same?

Without getting too political, this exhibition is an incredible collection of great pieces by DeNittis, Monet, Tissot, Sisley, Derain and Legros.

Go: if you want to have the great confirmation that art has always been with no barriers or borders. 

Don’t go: if you think that history doesn’t teach us much.

Robert Rauschenberg Exhibition, Tate Modern

Maggio Art Consultancy London

Robert Rauschenberg Exhibition, Tate Modern, until 2 April 2017

When you studied a little bit of American Contemporary Art but everything feels blurry but exciting, you go to the Robert Rauschenberg Exhibitions.

The interest, the number of mesmerised people visiting and reading and staring then, convince you that you are in the right show.

But then, images become less and less communicative, to you only apparently, and videos of dancers are not able to uplift you from the very much craved white rabbit hole.

Go: To learn at least one name for the American Modern Art movement.

Don't Go: if you need cardboard for your moving and you feel they could have a better use with you instead of at the Tate.

LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair in Berkeley Square, Mayfair

LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair in Berkeley Square, Mayfair, 2016? No, Thank you.

The art displayed at LAPADA 2016 was like your bookshelf: you know your books, you know the story and you know if they are interesting or NOT.

When you are tired of them though, you display some always fashionable Lalique vases, some overpriced African art and vintage diamond rings.

Done! the fee for the stand is almost covered.

Don't go: if you have some gardening to do.

Go: if you missed all the Art Fairs in 2015 and 2016.

Painting by Phil Shaw.  (Same old same old.)