In Milano with Martina Pastori
The great city of Milano. A powerful economic engine for Italy and the home to one of the most important creative communities of the bel paese. It was in this place, at a discreet, certainly less glamorous neighborhood, where we met the one and only Martina Pastori. As our readers must already know, we have been fairly obsessed with the so called FrenchItalian trap scene; in fact, we have already written two articles about it (click here - and here) and created three different mixes with some of our favorite tunes. This is why we were super ecstatic when we got the chance to secure an interview with this usually shy and reclusive artist, where we talked about the unique way she approaches both life and the creation of her beautiful work. check video below and scroll down for more.
The first music video made by Martina that we saw, was the stunning "Ninna Nanna" by new Italian superstar Ghali and his genius producer Charlie Charles. An incredible music video that uses surrealism and beautifully constructed scenes to elevates Ghali's music to a different level, making people feel the inner world of this unique musician. Even though the music production of this track is impressive; we believe that had it not been for Martina's outstanding video, this song would have never had the impact that it enjoyed, nor perhaps the over 60 million Youtube views and the legions of Ghali fans that it inspired.
"Ninna Nanna" is what kids are told to make them go to sleep. In the video, Ghali's mother puts him to sleep and he wakes in the world of his dreams. During the interview, Martina described one of the coolest parts of the video, where Ghali is surrounded by his followers, as her own homage to Da Vinci's Last Supper. She also used surreal sequences to show how the many dreams that Ghali had since he was a kid, were somehow now being materialized around him.
One of the most incredible aspects we found out about Martina after talking to her is how humble she is. Even though she has been able to work with some of Italy's biggest music artists - such as Fabri Fibra and Gue Pequeno - as well as create video stories for huge brands such as Versace, Sony and Italy's beloved Barilla, she hardly sees herself as a breakthrough artist.
Martina told us that in her small town everyone aspires to be a doctor or an engineer, therefore she was definitely an odd ball when she decided to make music videos.
She describes it as a passion that she always had.
She would spend hours looking at MTV videos and thinking about how she could do them differently, as well as how she could create visuals for the songs she liked the most. She told us as well that she comes from a heavier-music scene of Punk/Hardcore, something that she feels has worked to her advantage when it came to working with popular Rap/Trap artists.
In Picture: Martina in Jordan filming Ghali's Willy Willy (photo by Anna Adamo). There were only 4 people working in this video (including Ghali!). Martina achieved beautiful results using simple gear such as Sony's A7SII, regular Canon lenses and a DJI Ronin.
For those interested in learning more about Martina's work, we highly recommend watching the videos of Priestess "Maria Antonietta" and "Amica Pusher", as well as the stunning - probably seizure inducing - video for Laioung's Fuori (Je so Pazz). Her editing and the inclusion of shapes, colors and structures make each one of her videos exciting and unique. She told us that one of the most important aspects of her work is actually to make sure that she is able to understand the unique nature of every artist she is working with, instead of trying to impose any specific visual style on anyone.
Learning Italian? Here's an outtake of our interview with Martina Pastori where she talks specifically about the approach she uses when working with very popular artists from the French-Italian trap movement.
As we closed the interview - knowing that many of our readers are students of Radio, Television and Film - we decided to ask Martina for three tips she thought could be useful when making music videos. Audio for this particular clip was recorded on camera, which actually works really good as an exercise for anyone working on improving their Italian's listening and comprehension skills.
We invite you to visit the city of Milan, a cultural epicenter in Italy that has exported - and continues on exporting - some of the most daring creative Italian works in the realms of music, fashion, transmedia and art. We also invite you to take a look at all the links to Martina's work provided throughout this article, as well as her usually updated Vimeo page.
Thank you Martina for your time as well as the incredible contribution you have given to art and filmmaking in general.
Wondering what's next?
Check out the editorial post of this newsletter where we discuss the future of ITAL and Tiramisu For Two and how you can stay in touch with us after this last public newsletter...