Her name means Joy, she paints Beauty
Art is about feelings, it’s hard to describe… I met Gioia Albano’s art through Pinterest. I was looking for a drawing of woman which would depict my idea of femininity. And there she was: a colorful, flowery woman with an extraordinary presence and vibrant magnetism! I contacted the painter for her permission to use the image, and felt the need to meet the artist.
Her name is Joy. When you meet this charismatic 44 years old Italian Lady, you understand that joy is not only an emotion, but also a deep passion for life. That’s what Gioia embodies. A passion for painting, for women, for mothers, and for a certain idea – ideal – of life.
Gioia’s father is an artist, and being surrounded by large paintings on the walls was a standard for Gioia. Is it part of the reason why she started to draw on a regular basis since she is 3? Nobody knows, not even her. But most important to remember is her desire and need to draw women, from an early age.
- Exploring life
At the age of 13, she entered an art school, at 18 she was rejected from the Academy of Fine Arts of Milan. Her self-confidence, already frail, got destroyed. She had no plan B, and decided to work to earn her living. Then started a period of 10 years in which her mantra became “Explore”!
She worked in a photography shop, learning to process and print paper photography. Then she took art class and even started wood carving. But these techniques did not fulfill her, and for Christmas her family would gift her with paint brushes and colors. But she was not ready.
Instead, she worked as a waitress, call-center agent, and office employee. Then she taught herself IT, and surfed on the 2000’s booming industry as a developer for several years.
In the meanwhile, she moved from Milan to England, to Paris, to Copenhagen, got married, got 3 kids, learned English and French.
What put her back on the artistic track? Her first child. A voice inside said “Now or never.” She wanted to give her daughter the example of a person who was brave enough to go for her dream.
At 34, in 20007, she faced herself and started to explore what she had left behind for 10 years: painting.
- Women by Gioia
Gioia is a woman and a mother, so the female figure came instantly. There is a recurring pattern in Gioia’s art: long-haired female figure caring her children, breastfeeding, or babywearing. In her world, the woman is taken care of by her man, and the family has a peaceful time in nature. The atmosphere is colorful, and conveys a sense of peace and harmony. It’s neither parenting, nor mollycoddling, it is about sharing unconditional love, and providing emotional support. With her painting, Gioia spreads a vision of society where people are at peace with themselves, and together in the nest of the beautiful and protecting nature.
When asked what art is, she hesitates a bit. “Art is what makes me feel good and at peace”, she replied. “Art is what led me back to myself, my basics, and restored my confidence in myself, and trust in life. If it can give the same feeling to other people, then I’m even happier!”
According to Gioia, the spirit of creativity is part of us all. The artist is the one who cannot do something else. To her, art is also about taking time. It’s a way to live, to be in sync with herself and the world around her. To appreciate and celebrate. It should be part of everybody’s life in their own unique way!
Picasso said “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” That’s what happened to Gioia. Drawing was part of her life until she turned 13. Then, she lost it, and had the strength to dig it back and make room for it in her life.
Today, 10 years later, she still learns from painting women. She learns about technique, and explores new ways such as wood carving. She also learns about herself. The women bodies and faces, as well as family sceneries that she paints, are metaphors of womanhood, and the way of living that she advocates. A way where we take time for the ones we care about, starting with ourselves.
Gioia’s story taught me that passion and talent are not to take for granted. We have to cultivate, nurture, celebrate, and make them live and evolve. For passion and talent can only bloom if we take good care about them.
But exploring our passion and art has to start with ourselves. We are the soil on which our beautiful art can grow and bloom. Unless we cultivate ourselves, we cannot unleash our full potential.
She also taught me that we are the best ambassadors of our ideas, and that to see the change in the world, we have to start with ourselves, and watch our behaviors constantly, to not be trapped by life and to stay focused on what really matters!
Article written by Magali Defleur, Writer and Publisher, October 2017