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Quayola, visual artist
March 3, 2012 Royal Oak 40 Years

Absolute perfection can never be reached

For artist Davide Quayola, total mastery is a very difficult state to achieve. But always striving to become better at one’s craft is the best way to evolve.


In the work of Davide Quayola, what counts above all is the exploration of the rapport between the real and the artificial, the abstract and the figurative, the new and the old. To accomplish this, the 29-year-old London-based artist relies equally on photography, digital sculpture, immersive audiovisual installations and performances.

What does the notion of control, of striving for excellence mean to you as an artist?
Art for me is about excellence. I’m interested in the study, manipulation and re-interpretation of the world around us, focusing specifically on icons of perfection. The notions of control and excellence are key elements of my work. I strive to understand my subjects quite deeply, to understand the rules that define their visual and spatial characteristics. Then I re-assemble them starting from these very same rules.

Do you think one day you’ll achieve total mastery?
I think that neither full control nor utter perfection can ever be reached. I like the idea of always trying to do better: to never reach the pinnacle of excellence is a good way to evolve. 

  • Quayola
  • Topologies
  • Matter

Do you ever play with codes in your work? How?
When talking about processes based on new technologies it’s difficult to identify codes and rules. I’m fascinated by classical art—it’s a main source of inspiration and reference. I try to look at classical iconic artworks from different angles in order to de-contextualize them. I’m interested in the rules behind their visual characteristics—their colors, proportions, composition. I believe there is something somehow universal about these rules. I’m fascinated by exploring the unexpected collisions with contemporary languages and aesthetics.

How are you inspired by the world of watchmaking?
When Audemars Piguet first approached me for this project I didn’t know much about watchmaking. When I learned more about the underlying processes, I became incredibly fascinated by watchmaking’s history, skill and values. The level of precision and complexity is amazing. It’s not about luxury; it’s about perfection. In my work I try to create objects of contemplation, and I believe there is a similar ethos behind watchmaking.

- More information about the 40th anniversary on our dedicated section.