an interview with the graphic artist

Luke PonDesigning the poster for the Strenna of 2015, the year of the Bicentenary of the Birth of Don Bosco is a big responsibility. The task was entrusted to a young man called Luke Pontassuglia. Here are some of his reflections on the work.

By Fr Gian Luigi Pussino

How did you get the job?

The idea was to have a Strenna chosen “by young people for ypung people”. For that reason it was decided to entrust the task to a young person like me.During a visit to the Salesians in Vasto, Bro. José Luis Muñoz, Director of ANS, heard about some of my works from Fr George Zazza, former director of the oratory, and the parish priest, Fr Francesco Pampinella. Bro. Muñoz showed my work to the Rector Major and decided to offer me the chance which I accepted with great joy, but also with great anxiety because of the huge responsibility.

Can you explain the image on the poster?

I’ll try. I might begin by referring to the words of the man who first thought up the idea, Fr Bruno Ferrero, Director of the Italian Salesian Bulletin. I worked with him in putting it together. I will start from the beams in the foreground, which form part of a building under construction. This symbolizes something in the making, still evolving. It also represents the precarious situation and the challenges that young people face today. These young people are the builders of a new world. They must not be left on their own so Don Bosco is there to guide them. He shows them the field where they will have to work. Don Bosco is represented in shirtsleeves, ready to get to work, in the service of others, particularly young people. He has a serious look as if he is still dreaming. This is a Don Bosco that after 200 years is always ready to reach out to young people in their everyday situations, even if it means going into dangerous places that seem to be suspended between heaven and earth, with no stable point to provide the minimum of security necessary in life. Don Bosco, however, is not alone. With him there is the whole Salesian Family.  On the beam we find a Salesian standing, a Daughter of Mary Help of Christians and beside her a Salesian Cooperator. They work together to continue to realize a great dream which still continues to bear fruit.

What do you like best about it?

The first boy sitting astride the beam – he is the Michael Magone of the group. He is looking at Don Bosco and thinking, “Where do you find the energy to stay with us all the time?”

And what did you find hardest?

There were many hard parts, especially since the image has to be understood clearly all over the world!  I think Don  Bosco’s right hand was the hardest part. I had to redo it several times because of the importance of that gesture.

One last question – a more personal one: what are you expecting from the Bicentenary?

My hope is that it will remind us of the beauty of living as Don Bosco did,”with young people and for young people.” For my part, I would like to be able to enjoy this great opportunity. This year will surely be something precious, a year when we remember to keep dreaming. My goal will be to try to absorb everything that is beautiful and true, and to keep on looking for inspiration to Don Bosco and of course to the One who always accompanied him on the journey!

Source: Info ANS