David LaChapelle in Milan, exhibition of the pop culture artist

“I am interested in communication, in telling stories, especially in connecting with other people. I don’t consider the work finished until the viewer connects with the image and understands the story I am trying to tell. I try to take photographs that are comunderstandable. I’m not interested in abstract art, but stories that can be easily understood. It is precisely this connection that interests me the most.”

Talking is David LaChapelle, one of the most famous and discussed photographers in the world. We met him on the occasion of the presentation of the exhibition at the Deodato Arte Gallery in Milan.

A selection of over twenty-six significant pieces from various periods of the artist’s work, figurative paintings, still life portraits, as well as the most recent photographs inspired by the artist’s faith.

Photographs that dialogue with painting, especially with the Renaissance.

“I have always been impressed by Michelangelo, ever since I was a child and long before visiting the Sistine Chapel”He tells us David LaChapelle during our interview.

“I love the Renaissance, especially Michelangelo, since before I became a photographer. I have always had an obsession with reproducing the Sistine Chapel scene and when I was invited to visit it, with no crowds with the museum closed, I felt something magical.”

Different themes but one goal, to connect with people

From the portraits of Britney Spears, Leonardo Di Caprio and David Hockney made through an ironic approach, to the more spiritual works in which painting and photography mix together, up to the most recent, those in which the protagonist is uncontaminated nature

His photography is difficult to label in a genre, difficult to define. But once I read a definition that seemed right to me and I would like to know if you agree with it: “The photograph of David LaChapelle it is the vivisection of the present to suggest the future:’

“Yes, it’s fantasy, it’s spirituality, it’s humor, it’s tears. It’s a world of reality but also a world of possibilities, of dreams.”

In his most recent works the dialogue with nature is predominant.

“Nature is religion, nature is God’s cathedral. When I want to meet God, I seek solitude.

His photographs have portrayed different themes over the years, but in all of them there is a sort of human fragility. However, it is also true that in the end what emerges is faith in the future.

“I hope so. This is where the responsibility of the artist comes into play. I want to bring optimism and hope, I want to leave people who look at my work with a good feeling, I want to touch them.”

Is it influenced today by what is happening in the world? From the international situation?

“Very much. We live in a particular historical moment, a moment that we have never lived. We are on the edge of the precipice. There is talk of the atomic bomb, of the third world war; climate change is leading humans to extinction and nobody has never thought it could happen so fast. These are very complicated, heavy times. The new photographs I’m doing are much more responsible, I want to bring love, life.”

David LaChapelle in Milan, exhibition of the pop culture artist