Giovanni Motta is an artist living in Verona, Italy. He came up with his famous character Jonny Boy about 20 years ago as a way to heal his wounds. His entire life, Giovanni has been very creative. He had always needed to create, invent and build. His art focuses on rediscovering the inner child through recovering emotional memories, as the adult human being lives in a state of worry, yesterday, tomorrow, never today, here and now.
NFT Granny: “Dear Giovanni – thank you very much for taking your precious time. I really like your
character JohnnyBoy. What is the story behind this character? When have you invented
him and why?”
Giovanni Motta: Every human being is born with his own destiny, his own way. Life confronts you with many possibilities, and every day you are forced to make many decisions that constantly change your path. It does not matter whether your life has been difficult, hard or simple, whether you have been loved or not. The most important thing is to be able to understand what your right path is. Jonny Boy is the right path. If you listen to your inner child, you can never make a wrong choice.
This is the story behind Jonny.
I came up with Jonny Boy about 20 years ago because I was looking for a way to heal my wounds, and when I realised that the only way to heal my immense pain was to listen to my inner child, he was born: JonnyBoy
How did you first become interested in art, and how did you get started with it yourself?
Giovanni Motta: I have always been a very creative and imaginative child. I have always needed to create, invent and build. My interest in art as a vision of human beings and the world came later when I felt the need to use art as a cure, not as a form of expression.
Could you tell us more about the story behind your art piece “Metaborg – Fight to Survive”?
Giovanni Motta: Metaborg is the first NFT Manga made in Italy.
It is an experiment for me, a way to expand my artistic research.
I imagined a world where adult human beings are all dead. Only male children and a little girl, a warrior goddess, survived.
These children have been divided into neighbourhood gangs, and their only purpose is to train to fight and prove themselves the strongest.
They all want to compete, but there is only one tournament in which they all want to participate: The Metaborg.
JonnyBoy is the main character. Along with him, 31 other warriors, all gang leaders, strong warriors, will compete to determine the strongest fighter in the world.
The manga is very violent and aims to explore the true nature of human beings.
All these warriors are very well-known people in the Crytpo world, artists, collectors, and art critics who I made children with again.
I interviewed them, and they told me a lot about their childhood and past.
Which of your artworks are you most proud of?
Giovanni Motta: I am proud of all of my works; however, the creation of JonnyBoy was the moment I realized I had found my way. JonnyBoy is the work I am most proud of.
Is there an artist you would like to work with? Like a collaboration?
Giovanni Motta: I have collaborated with several artists that I really like, Giuseppe Veneziano, Dangiuz and Laurina Paperina.
One day I would like to collaborate with Federico Clapis, a great friend of mine, and with Alessio DeVecchi because his work is so distant from mine that maybe it might be interesting to see what comes out.
We are curious 🙂 Would you be willing to share any plans of upcoming projects?
Giovanni Motta: Absolutely. This November, I will have a solo exhibition in Shanghai in my Gallery in China, where I will exhibit 22 physical paintings. An exhibition called “ORIGINIS”, is already completely sold out, so I am thrilled. Then in January, I will be in Milan for an exhibition in a new digital art gallery where I will present a project between physical and digital. In February, issue 2 of Manga Metaborg will come out, and in the spring, in May, I will be in London at W1 Curated for a fully digital exhibition.
A very busy schedule.
Who or what are your biggest influences or sources of inspiration?
Giovanni Motta: The artistic current that comes closest to my art is NEO POP SURREALISM, and my entire aesthetic has been conditioned, influenced and inspired by the world of Japanese Anime and Manga.
Then, of course, there are writers like Marcel Proust and artists like Egon Schiele and Lucian Freud who, more than others, have influenced and polluted my vision and way of thinking art. Takashi Murakami and Damien Hirst are two other giants that I have studied and watched with great admiration for how they have managed their aesthetics and their work teams.
Is there something specific you are trying to express with your art?
Giovanni Motta: My art focuses on rediscovering the inner child through recovering emotional memories.
The adult human being lives in a state of worry, yesterday, tomorrow, never today, here and now. If he could get in touch with his inner child, he could return to the flowing moment and understand that the world’s beauty is now. With my art, I would like to help people make this contact.
What do you feel when you are creating new art?
Giovanni Motta: My work is made up of a strict daily routine of working with my team to keep making new artwork. It is teamwork, so I am thrilled when the team works calmly with positivity and passion. This makes me truly grateful to the universe.
Do you remember the first time you heard about NFT Art?
Giovanni Motta: Yes, very well. It was an Italian gallerist who told me about it and told me about Hackatao, so I contacted them, and they were the ones who explained everything about the crypto world of NFTs and helped me become part of this fantastic community.
How do you enjoy the NFT Art you have collected? Do you have a way to display it for example at home?
Giovanni Motta: It is straightforward. You need to have one or more digital panels. Big or small is unimportant. After hanging them on the wall, you can spin as many works as you wish and enjoy them throughout the day.
What would be your biggest wish for the NFT Art scene? What is currently missing / not fully developed to reach full potential out of it?
Giovanni Motta: Crypto art is Avant-garde, and like all Avant-gardes, it has an explosive force that pushes from the bottom up, but it needs time because it is newly born.
The mainstream contemporary art system has a hard time communicating with this new world, the future. I wish that a more robust collaboration, a bond, will be born so we can grow together into tomorrow. NFT art is obviously the future, and I say this very serenely because I imagine the young artists of today, how many would choose a digital brush over a traditional brush, almost all of them.
So in the next ten years, most young emerging artists will be digital natives. Exhibition and curatorial models will change. Everything will change.
What is the most disturbing thing when it comes to NFTs and cryptoart in your opinion?
Giovanni Motta: I don’t see anything disturbing. I only see positive things, just an incredible opportunity for artists and art to finally be free, in the hands of artists and not the system, whatever it is. The problem is being human, its nature, which has never changed. We will see what will happen because only human beings can ruin the earth on which he lives. Art is pure; any form of art is pure. The human being can be very disturbing.
Which tools do you use to create your art?
Giovanni Motta: I use brushes, canvases, acrylic paints, and pencils of various kinds for physical art and digital animation and graphics programs for the digital part.
What does a typical day for you look like, and what do you like to do when you’re not busy with NFT Art?
Giovanni Motta: I wake up around 7 am, meditate, then breakfast, and then go for a run for 1 hour. At 9 am, I get to the workshop and do about an hour on social media and email, and after a short meeting with my staff, I get on with making the artwork. If I decide to work physically, I stay all day on physical and vice versa for digital.
Around 7 pm, I come home and cook for my family.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
Giovanni Motta: Explore the doubt.
Is there something aside from art or NFTs you collect?
Giovanni Motta: No, just art, but I like fashion and home decor.
Last but not least: Where do you like to travel?
Giovanni Motta: I like the sea to relax, but my favourite trips are business trips. I like to travel to make new friends and relationships, to visit other artists’ studios and new art galleries. I love getting lost in cities and stopping at a bars to draw. Just love good weather and coffee.
- Full Name: Giovanni Motta
- Date of Birth: 15th July 1971
- Current hometown: Verona, Italy
- Languages he speaks: Italian, English
- What did you want to be when you were a child: Artist and actor
- Education: Accounting
- First Job: Creative director