Alexandru Daniel Florea

Daniel Alexandru Florea, born in 1995 in Ploiești, Romania, is an artist who pursued his education at UNArte (National University of Arts) with a specialization in Graphics, earning both his Bachelor’s degree in 2017 and his Master’s degree in 2019. Currently, he resides and works in Bucharest as a VFX Compositing Artist and Visual Artist.

You can follow Daniel on his Instagram profile:

Q&A with Alexandru Daniel Florea

When did you discover your passion for art, and what does art mean to you?

I can’t pinpoint a specific moment because it wasn’t a discovery. Rather, I believe it accumulated gradually over many years. Until I reached the art high school and began to study in a more formal setting, in a more organized form, and to work in different environments. Since then, my journey has been a continuous line, broken only here and there.

I grew up near the Teleajen River. My ability to observe, my taste/preference for vegetal structures, found objects and materials, and all sorts of animals are connected to this. I draw with the same seriousness with which I did as a child: slightly frowned upon and with pursed lips.

What I do is my way of understanding things and, in a broader sense, life. At the same time, it’s my attempt to invite others to look more closely and observe what I see in things, to build their own narrative, to revise aspects, or to rewrite an existing narrative. (For example, what are holes?!)

Describe yourself briefly: what do you like, what moves you, what angers you?

Flowers, leaves, clouds, tree bark, stones, algae, fish, birds, small insects—I observe them all with the same neutral pleasure and the same curiosity as when I look at thistles, burrs, or how a hyena enjoys an elephant carcass. In my eyes, they have roughly the same weight. I indulge in HIIT and Cardio workouts. I’m drawn to any sport that involves a ball. I like ancient board games like Senet and Go. I have a weakness for sweets. I enjoy exposing myself to new ideas and different areas of research. I melt for a new book. I absolutely do not accept and am revolted by violence, abuse, bullying, and everything malicious. I am moved by the light outside immediately after the sun has set, before it gets completely dark.

Describe your artistic vision: sources of inspiration, methods, messages you want to convey to the audience.

I’m interested in absences, holes, pits, and I try to understand the role they play in visual grammar and perception. Also, in horizons and landscapes. I make references to what I see outside and what I see online.

Hole puncher, pen and ink, needle, straw, liner, marker, pencil, along with materials found outside and inside: vegetal structures, leaves, aluminum foil, mosquito net, paper, covers, plastic, each cut into small rectangular fragments—I use them all in turn to achieve harmonies between the figurative drawing I create and the type of material used. For example, if I use leaves, I use a hole puncher to obtain a design that resembles caterpillars. Or I do the opposite, creating a drawing that opposes the material: when I use an industrial, metallic material, I draw organic, vegetal shapes with the needle.

In the end, I produce extensive series of drawings and modular objects that can be arranged and rearranged, displayed in various ways. Then I archive them. I work a lot with the scanner. Some drawings are made and designed specifically for the digital environment.

What I’m trying to say is that you can look at things, even the most ordinary ones, again and again, with a curious and fresh eye. So you can better understand the things around you, reconsider their relationships, and rethink how you relate to them. Enjoy a variety of textures and recognizable shapes. I’m generous when it comes to details, and I like to reward the attentive viewer.

Who has influenced you on your journey so far and how?

My parents, through their work ethic and their determination not to give up. My soccer coach, for instilling generosity in efforts and seriousness. Each teacher individually through their patience, attention, insistence, and the explorations they encouraged.

Which of your works do you like the most, and what does it mean to you?

I had a broad series of drawings and small letters, a video, and an archive box. I used rectangular cutouts from Letraset and Mechanorma transfer sheets that already had all sorts of scribbles resulting from their previous use. What I tried to do was to use what hadn’t been scratched off the transfer sheet and use them as remnants of a conversation, things left unsaid or unable to be put into words. This resulted in a wide variety of compositions, combinations of letters, and letters. In a hostile and unfavorable context, with a little luck, the organizers decided to move the exhibition to the National Library in Bucharest. The space I exhibited in had peeling and dirty walls. Thus, it matched perfectly with the texture of the drawings. The mix of space, context, textures, content, letter, and library make that work valuable, and it remains a reference for me. The exhibition was called “Was Jetzt?”.

What has been the most joyful moment in your career so far?

I’m happy with the simple fact that I can do this. I’m delighted by the small discoveries, accidents, tiny details, new ideas I obtain, and the changes in direction that result from all of this. At those moments, I forget about everything else. Although there have been times when I achieved success, locally, nationally, or internationally as a student, they are only the result of sustained effort and the sum of all these small joys I mentioned.

What are your expectations from the Accelerator Brașov program?

I hope that through the comprehensive nature of this program, even though it’s limited to one day per workshop, I gain clarity about everything related to my artistic practice, especially in terms of communicating this practice to the public and other artists. I don’t wish for anything more than to acquire knowledge and criteria through this mentorship program so that I can manage a broader personal exhibition project.

Which other artist do you admire and find inspiring, and why?

Alicja Kwade, first for her attention and sensitivity to materials, and then for how she thinks about objects, sculptures, and installations. Richard Serra, for how he uses the same material and shapes space in a way that makes you feel different things. Arno Beck, for technique, imagery, and color. Katya Budkovskaya, for her pixelated weavings, for color, and for showing the reverse side of her works. Pelle Cass, for repetition and variety. Hana Katoba, for the way she uses flowers for atmosphere and landscape.

Anish Kapoor, for space, shapes, and holes. Among Romanians, Gili Mocanu, Alexandru Rădvan, Vlad Olariu, Lucian Hrisav, each for their perseverance and aesthetics.

What are your future plans?

I just want to continue doing this. To exhibit more often. I like the idea of a duo more than a solo show; at the right time, I would try that.

Works of the Artist

in Fabulating About a Gelato Machine Exhibition