Gianmaria Della Ratta, Interview

Maccheronix8.obj in Pasta Yellow pla color

















Interview: Claudine Garcia










Could you introduce yourself in a few lines? Can you give us some information about your background, education, training formation. How did you come to what you do today? Are you a designer,  an artist? Is it important to make a difference?

Hello everyone, I'm Gianmaria Della Ratta, a designer born in a small town in Southern Italy called Sant'Agata dei Goti, but I've been living in Holland for some years now where I have my professional studio and where I collaborate with several companies.

Since I was a child I have always had a predisposition for everything artistic, I liked to draw a lot and create small objects that I would then give to my parents. 

After my Italian university and working interlude in the field of product design, I realized that everything was a bit tight on me and that I needed an experience that would open my mind by showing me new horizons both in the discipline I had chosen and in my life . 

So, I decided to attend the Design Academy Eindhoven. The two years of Masters in Contextual Design taught me a lot, but certainly what they left me most were discipline, method and above all the creation of strong concepts above functionality.




Above, inspiration for Maccheronix4 and x8. Below, Pasta in Naples

Above, making pasta by hand. Below, production process pasta







Where do you find inspiration? What are the themes touched by your work?

Inspiration, especially in the creative field, can be found everywhere. Everything that surrounds us or is part of our imagination can be a source of inspiration for a new project. 

Personally, I am very interested in production processes. How is something born? With what materials? What are the secrets behind an object? I like to observe what is not visible to our eyes. Like when I used to take toys apart as a child to see what was inside them. I often start from these processes to find inspiration, manipulate them, make them mine and then use them to create something new and unusual, thanks also to digital techniques that can never miss in my idea of conceiving design. 

When I’m doing a new project I always try to approach it from different angles. Let's say that I don't have a single line that I follow for everything I do, but I often rely on my intuition, my feelings and what the purpose of the thing I'm designing should be.

I always start by asking myself questions: "why?", "how?", "what?", not always in that order, but I try to give answers that must be convincing for me, and from these answers I then develop the concept of the entire project, which I then deconstruct into many small experiments, whether they be drawings or small models.
I study them, I try to understand what they communicate to me and what they can communicate, I discard some of them and so on until there are 3 left that often converge into a single first prototype.

In doing all this, I always try not to leave out the essence of the initial idea, but at the same time I try to make it as simple, explicit and convincing as possible in the object, however complex it may be.

I never think in advance about what the material, the colour or even the appearance of that particular project I am working on should be, but I let the process dictate its laws and guide me during conception and production.

I give great importance to the concept and why in the world there is a need for that creation of mine in one way or another. I experiment a lot, constantly, above all, with digital and innovative methods that are almost always part of the background of my projects or, in a certain sense, end up being one of the central themes that I like to treat, twist and reconstruct conceptually, always trying to push the boundaries of creation.






3D Tagliatelleobj process in Blender/CGI

3D Fusilliobj process in Blender/CGI







How would you describe your work to someone who's not used to the art and design's world ? What do you aim to say in general through your pieces? What are you expecting from viewers to note when they see your work?

In general, as far as I'm concerned, I firmly believe that design should always be a means of conveying messages, whether through research into materials, specific formal characteristics or particular production methods, or simply representing and symbolising an idea, even and above all when it meets with commercial design, so as to reach as many homes and people as possible. 

A chair, for example, can be aesthetically beautiful and extremely comfortable and sell millions of pieces, but if it has nothing to say it will simply remain just another chair. If, on the other hand, in addition to its aesthetics and functionality it could speak, trigger conversations and convey a message, then it would acquire another value, this time an immeasurable one.

Many will say that the highest expression of design is to improve people's lives through research and development of the things that surround us and their functions, but I see this as too narrow and simplistic view of what this word encompass. A balance must certainly be found, but the concept, the message and the reason must never be missing.

In my specific case, the message is always aimed at the future. Let me explain. What I am constantly trying to communicate is my desire to always look at innovation with the eyes of a child, at what is or can be coming next, at the next step, to the detriment of a traditionalism that is perhaps too often flaunted today.

Of course tradition is not something to be erased, the "cancel culture" we hear so much about nowadays, especially in the social sphere, is something I repudiate, but we should certainly look at tradition as a solid base for new discoveries and to appropriate it so as to understand its weak points and evolve them.
So the message I always try to give in my objects is this, hold on to your traditions but always look for the next step to take in order not to stagnate.



Maccheronix4.obj in White Flour pla color

Maccheronix4.obj in White Flour pla color



What relationship do you have with digital? As you noticed :),  the world is going through a global pandemic, does it have an impact on you, your work or project(s)? Any piece of advice for young people to enter the world and system of contemporary creations? Do you have a new project in mind? Or a more global concept or vision you'd like to investigate in?

I could define my relationship with digital as almost absolute. Digital and the world around us are both my main source of daily inspiration and my main methodology, which is expressed through the use of 3D modelling software and more.
Sometimes it is an almost morbid relationship, from which it becomes difficult to detach, but which I gladly accept as it helps me to convey my artistic vision. 

All this has become even more present in the last year when the global pandemic has forced everyone to stay at home, greatly increasing the digital influence on people's lives. I experienced this amplification almost as a natural consequence of a world that is going in that direction after all.

A metaphysical direction that creates visible distortions of the real world. Obviously, you have to know how to incorporate this distortion into your discipline, and I think I have succeeded. 
With the new project in collaboration with Giorgio Gasco: Digital Muses, we set out to explore these colourful digital worlds, from camgirls to gamers, from chefs to vloggers. And we feel the need to explore them all, because they are all different and all have their own unexpressed or unperceived artistic value. 

I don't know where I see myself in the future. For sure there is the desire to never stop, the ambition to reach more and more people through what I do. The desire perhaps to see the world of design freer from preconceptions and constraints, free to help people think and in this way make them participate in the project at the same time. The thing that I will probably never stop repeating to myself is don't be satisfied!

Let what you are most passionate about guide your life, don't stop at the first obstacle, suffer for what you love to do, and always aim 10 steps ahead, what you have achieved must never be enough.



Maccheronix8.obj hand-signed bottom part

Gianmaria inspects the 3D printed vase after final process






Maccheronix8.obj in Basil Green pla color

Maccheronix8.obj in Basil Green pla color









SHOP — Maccheronix4.obj €230,00

SHOP — Maccheronix8.obj €540,00









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