Spanish artist Alberto Mielgo is responsible for producing some very personal and evocative work. Though a successful freelancer in the graphic market, it is his personal work that entices us to know more for this investigation. Alberto’s paintings feature an eroticism that shows a specific interest in discovering the innocence of the model, as well as the greater aspects of the subject and immediacy of the moment. From his London UK studio, Alberto finds time to share with us an exclusive look at some of the visual feasts that fascinate his interests and fuel his daily fires.
Nathan Spoor reports in with Mielgo below.
So Alberto, tell us a little about yourself. Where do you live and where did you grow up? We’re curious how you became an artist and how you arrived at your current state.
I’m now living in Spain working as a freelancer overseas – but I’m moving to Los Angeles, CA soon.
I grew up in Spain. I became an artist because I always wanted to from a very early age. I don’t remember a period of my life with out having such an idea in my mind. When I was 22, I moved to London following the best of the inspirations. And I’ve been living and working in London for about 7 years.
Did you attend an art university? How do you feel that experience, or lack thereof, helped you to progress?
No I did not. I did start working at an animation studio at the age of 18, and I actually started learning while working.
I always had the feeling that I did miss a lot by not going to University. But in fact I think my way of learning has been very solid. I learn and I’m still learning from my mistakes – but more importantly, from my “hits”. Many times they are caused hits, many times they are accidental hits. So as many painters do, I create my own way of working that more or less work for me.
We’re aware that you are in high demand for your digital work (the Beatles game backgrounds come to mind), yet your personal work is such a direct expression and has such presence. How often do you get to pursue your personal work
I did sell paintings back in London and in Spain, but at the moment my incomes come mostly from the commercial area. I must say that I also love the digital world. Nowadays, digital paintings mainly have commercial exposure, but I guess that it would change at some point.
In fact my most important school of painting has been in front of my computer.
I love digital as a different tool, so when I paint digitally I don´t like to emulate traditional look. I like the work to look digital, techie…
Is there a place where your paintings can be seen, or are on view?
There are some paintings in some public places, but old stuff. At the moment I’m producing a body of pieces to show. I’m in a period of change and I feel I have quite a lot to produce and things to say with my paintings. You can come to my studio anytime, though!
Aside from painting or making art, what inspires you or energizes your daily motions?
Many many things. People, friends, places, architecture, images, internet, technology…
For many years I’ve been inspired by the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. She was the most moving and gorgeous thing to look at.
Sex and eroticism are for me indeed beautiful. It is part of our lives as is eating or breathing. Sexual areas are usually hidden. In painting, when you feel that the model is actually a professional, when you see that the pose is forced, unnatural or when you see the pose is trying to hide some areas, It doesn’t say much to me.
I really like to see intimacy in my paintings, but my intention is not to provoke at all. I just think it’s certainly beautiful when a woman is comfortable enough to just lay down completely relaxed on a sofa, almost innocently. The eroticism is innocent.
Sport is a very important thing for my daily motions too. I need to run, cycle and swim every week. Very personal and intimate sports where I just concentrate on my thoughts and let my body move provide something psychological for me. I need it everyday. It keeps me fresh. The best ideas came to me in action.
Music is also a huge influence and inspiring thing for me. It moves me. It makes my mood change. I need it for work all the time.
Are you an avid reader, music appreciator or movie viewer? What do you find interesting in those avenues?
Yes, I love all that. Reading, music and cinema are for me a huge influence on my day by day. I think I can never stop, so if I´m not working I need to read, or watch a movie or go out.
I basically listen to classical and jazz, but I would say that most of the time I listen to newer electronic music. It helps me a lot when working, may be it’s because its repetitive mode makes my creativity fly away. The other day I was actually thinking how lucky I am to live in this period of time where new and weird electronic-treated sounds can be heard. Ricardo Villalobos, Stimming, and so so so many new artists are my favorites right now.
Is there something that you really crave creatively, something that you dream of one day bringing to the viewers? Imagine cost or size or materials are not an issue, what would you like to make a reality?
… not sure.
I don’t think I have a very expensive or huge idea.
I like to paint large, but I also like to do small-scale paintings. Some paintings shouldn’t be too big, while some others are meant to be huge.
Nowadays artists are trying to do a big call. We provoke, we think big, we try to scream so we get noticed. I don’t think I’m an enormous scale or sophisticated artist. All of us want to be liked (I mean to be successful among people), but that doesn’t depend on large scales or big budgets. That depends of other things that I wish I could know.
Thank you so much for your time sir. As we part ways, is there any sage advice that you’ve learned or was passed on to you that you could share with the readers?
It’s nice to discover things on your own, as an individual. Sooner or later things come to you if you work hard. And it’s great that there are things continually coming, and that there are still more to come.