Lidia Chiarelli is an eminent and dynamic artist and poet of our time. She has authored poetry books, anthologies and is one of the founders of the artistic literary movement, Immagine and Poesia. She is also an award winning poet of various Italian poetry contests, Pushcart Prize nominee and a judge in poetry competitions and Art festivals. Here goes an interview with an inspirational author and artist from the lovely Mediterranean country, Italy.
Lidia Chiarelli : Being born in Italy and being surrounded by various forms of
Art and poetry have certainly developed my love for both. During my university studies, however I turned my interest to English and American Literature and Art. As a teacher of English I taught creative writing courses. In my workshops, I led my students to transform their emotions into short poems and with the help of an Art teacher , turn them into images too. Today I am operating mostly online in my Immagine & Poesia association, coordinating the work of hundreds of poets and artists from different countries, creating exhibitions and helping to organize poetry competitions.
Lidia: Poetry. My first encounter with poetry dates back to the 70s when I went to London for an English summer course for foreign students. One of the teachers suggested a kind of poetry competition and my poem ‘Rhythm of Life’ was very successful. Several years later, I met British poet Aeronwy Thomas (Dylan Thomas’ daughter) in Torino and her principle of cross-fertilization among poets and artists’ works opened up new perspectives by making it clear how Art and poetry might interact.
Lidia : I started as a translator of English poems into Italian, then, remembering the successful London experience, I tried to write poems myself.
Some American friends, including editor-publisher , Stanley Barkan of
Cross-Cultural Communications, suggested to go on and to publish my first twenty poems. In my debut collection of poemsImmagine & Poesia – The Movement in Progress (CCC, New York 2013) a few artists completed my poems with their artworks. The image of my installation of poetry tree was the conclusion of the book.
Vatsala: Is there any particular subject or theme that you usually love to explore in your paintings and poems?
Vatsala: You are one of the editors of the online anthology, Immagine and Poesia, published annually. Please tell us about it and your other works (poetry books and paintings)?
(Torino Italy, 2007) , I have tried to put into practice the principles of our manifesto and through the web I have encouraged poets and artists around the world to join us with their works.
Vatsala: What advice would you give to young and emerging poets and artists?
This echoes with my message to the world as well.