"I live between China and UK, I was in China with my family from January until the end of August 2020, I lived the dramatic moments of the pandemic while I was there"

Describe for us in a few words, How you survive 2020 ?

I live between China and UK, I was in China with my family from January until the end of August 2020, I lived the dramatic moments of the pandemic while I was there, we went through 2 months of strict lockdown, at the end of March everything went back to normal, When I came back to London I have to go through 14 days of self quarantine , then on October 31 another lockdown until December 3, and now the government announced another lockdown to start on December 16, so life is not too easy I had to cancel many trips and projects, while in China I had my family with me, now in London I’m by myself, China temporary closed the borders to UK so I have to wait to reunite with my family that is still there. Despite all the problems that the pandemic caused I’m in good spirit, I’m always a very optimistic person so I guess its easier for me, my job was not affected, I kept myself busy with brokering art for my clients, discovery new emerging artists for my collection, exploring this new phenomenon which is crypto-art, also working on writing a book. I think it’s important to always be curious in life and try to learn new things, I also think that in every adversity there are also new opportunities.

When did your love for art start?

I always loved art, I grow up surrounded by art and at school I was always attracted by art and literature, I never been a math type of person, I always new I was going to work in arts even though at that age I didn't know exactly in which capabilities.

At what point did you decided to start collecting?

I always collected something since young age, when I was little I started with comics, football cards, stamps, toys, then growing up moving to Chinese ceramics, memorabilia and Art, in the past 5 years just focusing on contemporary art.

People who will read this are most likely thinking of starting a personal collection. Where should they start?

These days its very easy to discover art through social media, on Instagram for example you can discover both young emerging artists self representing themselves and artists managed by galleries, all the galleries have instagram profiles so you can easily discover their programs and get in touch with them for further informations, I think social media if used correctly they are a powerful tools, Instagram is by far my favorite, I have a large following on there and I ended up talking and doing business with some renowned collectors on the platform. So to all the people out there don’t use socials to focus on silly things like stirring hate speech and gossiping, just look around, be curious, ask questions and you’ll end up with some serious business opportunities.

You live between London and China, how’s the art scene in China now?

China it’s in my hearth, not only because my wife she’s Chinese but because I always had great time there, I visited amazing places, people are very friendly food is great and the level of personal safety you experience while walking around in China you can’t experience in any other part of the world, the art scene there keeps growing, I see more and more young collectors coming out from China with great appetite for Art.

How are you able to identify potential? Can you share with us your favorite emerging artists at the moment?

Over the years I predicted the rise of artists such as Yayoi Kusama, Yoshitomo Nara, Kaws, Jonas Wood, Nicolas Party, Harold Ancart, to name a few, I’m glad to those collectors who listened my advises years ago when the crowd still didn't awake and prices were still very affordable. I don’t think I have a specific recipe to identify potential, I just follow my instinct. I see hundreds of artists every months but just very few grab my attention, its difficult to explain, I guess it’s like when you meet the right person in your life, when you feel that spark inside you, that right combination of aesthetic and personality that works well for you, the same I apply when I select art, I never follow the hype, since my school days I’ve never been good to follow conformity, I always thought outside the box, sometimes it didn't make me very popular but I never really cared. When I buy art I never care if major collectors are buying, if represented by major galleries etc, I never buy art I don’t like just to get invited to gallery’s parties, I find them extremely boring and full of pretentious people anyway. When I buy art is because I feel some type of connection, it could be anything from childhood or adult memories, normally it always relates to happy memories in general. Some of my favorite emerging artists right now are Jonathan Chapline, Szabolcs Bozo, Felix Treadwell, James Ulmer, Alfie Caine and Philip Gerald

If I can give an advise to people who want to start collecting always buy art you truly like and feel good to live with every day, don't buy just to follow the hype hoping to discover the new Picasso.

You have an impressive social media following, have you met artists through that medium?

Yes all the time, Especially during all these lockdowns I really enjoyed discovery new artists on Instagram and developing some type of direct correspondence with them.

We can also see from social media that you love cooking, what are the key elements for a great Italian dinner?

I always liked cooking, its another form of art, having more free time during the lockdowns I took advantage to perfecting my cooking skills, my cooking stories on Instagram are becoming very popular, I receive lots of private messages all the time, the key elements for a great Italian dinner is using top quality and fresh ingredients, many foreigners for example they don’t know that apparently simple ingredients like pasta, tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil or parmesan cheese can transform your dish if of top quality.

Connect with Daniel follow his amazing page full of art  @Danielturriani 

"Jeniffer Varela is a Colombian journalist with a Master of Arts in Fashion Studies, from Parsons The New School for Design. She worked for over 10 years in Colombian top newspapers and magazines, before focusing completely on fashion. Today, she combines her job as a researcher for the resale luxury market with independent projects and media collaborations in the field of fashion and arts."

Jeniffer Varela Rodriguez