I started the Ditology-project in 2009, when I decided to create my account on the Facebook. I wanted this to become a virtual space to be free from relatives, colleagues and not-very-friends. That’s why I decided to create an avatar. In Italian someone could say I wanted to « hide myself behind my finger » (trans. « nascondermi dietro un dito »): it’s a metaphor to indicate a not-very-effective hiding place! My desire to hide myself from real life made me think about people’s identity and mine. So I used the image of a finger to suggest that we all try to hide ourselves behind an image of us we create. That’s my finger: the representation of the changing masks everybody wears in playing life… probably to preserve the fragile individual uniqueness of our finger-print.
I’m known as « il Dito », that’s Italian for “the Finger”. My complete nickname is Dito Von Tease. This name is inspired to Dita Von Teese, the famous icon of « bourlesque » style and expert in disguises. But her second name « Teese » becomes « Tease » to give the idea of an appetizing: a funny invitation to people to be curious about the complex mystery of personal identities. And this is the reason why I am specifically an index-finger, indicating and questioning YOU for a reflection about your own identity. The characters I choose to create my portraits are taken from news, historical events, arts, politics and so on. If our image is “the finger behind we hide”, this is true especially for celebrities, who live of their masks. All the rest is just my happy hand, creativity, and photoshop. Every portrait is a small and detailed handicraft, taking from 8 to 16 work hours.
The Ditology-project wants to invite everybody to look beyond the “masks” we use in playing our lives and to go deep to find our unique « fingerprint ». In the « digital age » (digitus is Latin for finger) the finger is the « tool » we use in our touch-screens, mouse pads and keyboard. Thus everybody is « hidden behind his finger » while surfing the internet and especially in social networks. Often or at least sometimes, hiding ourselves in our digital identity, we fill freer to express ideas, opinions, sensations and dreams we probably don’t (can’t?) express as clearly in real life.
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