Olimpia Zagnoli.

“The space where I work is my room.

I bought a book in Barcelona with a collection of space guns inside and I hung the pages to the wall. I like to stick little toys, articles or ideas to the wall so that I can remember everything and be surrounded by what I like. I got the pepper lights in Milan’s Chinatown, the Super Mario sound effects keychain in New York, the fake mustaches in Rome, the Josephine Baker’s postcard in Paris, the El Niño Divino pink candle in Brooklyn. I do have an iMac but i usually work on my small MacBook cause I find it easier and I like the idea that I can work from the kitchen if I want. My bookcase is full of books, magazines, fanzines, dvds, photos and boxes. I keep telling myself that I need to get a bigger one but I kinda like that colorful chaos. The big painting was made by Ivo Bonacorsi in 1983. There’s also a cup I won at a ski competition on the Alps when I was 16 and a pink furry record player my ex boyfriend gave me as a present for my 18th birthday.”

Olimpia Zagnoli was born in 1984 in a small town in northern Italy. Her style is characterized by graphical and clean illustrations with a retro taste. Her work has been exhibited in several magazines, newspapers, book covers, posters and galleries around Europe and the US. Her clients include the New York Times, the New Yorker, The Guardian, Adidas Originals, The Rolling Stone, Il Corriere della Sera and many others. Olimpia now lives between Milan and New York and drives a yellow Fiat. Her favorite color is grey and she loves Picasso. When she gets old she wants to be a rockstar.

FROM YOUR DESKS: Italy is a colourful country; do the colours in your art work reflect the atmosphere you are part of.
OLIMPIA ZAGNOLI: I’m living in Milan which means grey for most of the year. Grey is my favorite color though so I guess I’m fine with it.
FYD: Your work reminds me of 60’s graphics and Raul Rand even Matisse and Picasso. What other artists, directors and illustrators inspire you?
OZ: I love the work of the ones you quoted. I’d love to add Bruno Munari, Jacques Tati, Saul Bass, Dick Bruna, Charles Shulz, Louis Malle, Miroslav Sasek and The Sex Pistols to the list.


FYD: How did your Adidas Originals and Vice solo show come about?

OZ: I won a competition called “Celebrate Originality” in 2009 held by Adidas Originals and the prize was an exhibition at the new Vice Gallery in Milan. The space is amazing and I think it came out pretty good!

FYD: Your parents were both artists; do you see of their work in your own? 

OZ: Sometimes my dad asks me if I can sketch some of the idea he has for his pictures and sometimes my mom asks for suggestions about the colors she should use for her collages. And I do the same with them! I like the fact we support each others and we truly love what we do.

FYD: Do you watch futbal?
OZ: I don’t. I used to have a t-shirt of Reggiana, my hometown’s team but that’s all.

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