Sonia Maria Luce Possentini was born in Canossa (Reggio Emilia), and divides her life and work between Canossa and Pigneto sul Secchia (Modena). After graduating in History of Art from the DAMS (University for Art, Music and performing Arts), and obtaining a diploma from the Academy of Fine Arts of Bologna, she studied at the Sarmede School of Illustration under Stepan Zavrel. In 2017, she received the prestigious Andersen Award for Best Illustrator and worked on the book "The plants with no name", in the Storietalentuose series edited by Fondazione Cologni for Carthusia. In 2018 she received the MAM-Maestro d'Arte e Mestiere award.
Can you tell us your story?
My story is a long one and it is not finished yet. When I was a child I wanted to work in art restoration and I studied for that; then life led me to change my plans, but I still stayed in the field of art.
Imagination is fundamental in your work, but how far does the place where you live influence you? And how?
It has a huge influence. On the other hand every artist, wherever they live, have in themselves particles of memory that bind them deeply to the places where they are. I am foggy and reserved and very restless, just like the region I come from, Emilia Romagna.
When I was a child I wanted to work in art restoration and I studied for that; then life led me to change my plans, but I still stayed in the field of art.
Every work that I decide to illustrate is a challenge: every story has an intimate relationship of its own with me and my imagination.
What are the elements you draw on for your works?
Nature, what surrounds it. My garden, to which I devote a lot of my free time. Femininity, which is nature itself.
You have worked with many publishers and have illustrated many books. What has the most significant experience been? Why?
Artistic maturity has in store magnificent discoveries and puts you in an area of relaxation with your restless character, even though it is a shadow that follows you everywhere. The experience that I am having now with the publisher Carthusia is very important for me: it makes me grow and experiment, it sets me many challenges and keeps me on my toes. I could not have asked for anything better.
In 2018 you won the Fondazione Cologni’s MAM-Maestro d'Arte e Mestiere prize, a tribute to all the craftspeople who make Italy great. What did this mean to you?
Being part of Italian creativity, which has always made us stand out in the world.
What is or what are the moments that you remember with the greatest emotion?
Definitely the Andersen Award for best illustrator. This is a very important achievement for my profession.
Which work was a challenge for you? Why?
Every work that I decide to illustrate is a challenge: every story has an intimate relationship of its own with me and my imagination. But if I have to choose, perhaps the most important challenge has been telling the story, both in pictures and in words, of a personal experience of working in a foundry. Laying yourself bare is never easy and above all I hoped, as was the case, that it would be of help to boys and girls.