Born in Florence, Vanni Mangoni grew up in Italy until the age of 19 when he was offered a full-scholarship from University of Southern California - in Los Angeles - for his academic and swimming achievements. At USC he studied Fine Arts and Cinema, became an All-American athlete and he graduated in 2010.
Vanni worked in Hollywood as a storyboard artist and art director for three years before he embarked on a decade-long backpacking journey which led him to many countries around the world and to absorb the culture of the peoples he met. The First Nation people of North, Central and South America, and Australian Aboriginals were the most influential encounters for Vanni, on both a human and artistic level.
It is while travelling that Vanni re-discovered a passion for drawing and painting which he quickly turned into his main focus.
Since 2020, Vanni lives between Italy and Nicaragua and works as a visual artist, muralist and filmmaker.
As a visual artist, I draw inspiration from the transformative power of beauty, nature, and the mystical experience. My art aims to spark conversations and encourage positive reflections in response to modern isolation, artificiality, and mundanity.
Vibrant colors and serene glances in my subjects serve as an emotional conduit, infusing my work with optimism and hope, countering the somber tones of a crisis-laden world.
Indigenous themes pay homage to the wisdom of cultures connected to nature and the spirit world, fostering a shared responsibility for the planet and offering a broader look at the human experience, healing, and coexistence.
Through detailed craftsmanship, I unravel layers of intricacy and symbolism, inviting contemplation and curiosity. By engaging with these nuances, viewers are encouraged to explore hidden narratives and reflect on personal experiences.
Ultimately, my art offers respite from the clamor of the modern world and presents a life-affirming perspective.
It inspires viewers to go beyond superficiality and embrace the profound.
V a n n i M a n g o n i
2005 to 2010 : University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA.
Bachelor of Arts, FINE ARTS – Minor, CINEMA/TELEVISION
2008 : 1st place, PAC10 Swimming Championships, Long Beach
2007: All-American, NCAA Swimming Championships, Minnesota
2007: 1st place (200 IM), US Open Swimming Spring Championships, NY
2nd place (200 Breaststroke, 400 IM), US Open Swimming Spring Championships, NY
2005: Finalist (400IM), European Swimming Championships, Vienna
2022: (Winner) Best Feature - Psychedelic Music and Film Festival, New York
2022: (Winner) Award of Excellence - Impact Docs Award, San Diego
2021: (Nomination) Best Documentary - Amsterdam World International Film Festival, Amsterdam
2006 to 2010: Athletic Full Scholarship, USC, Los Angeles
2007-08-09: USC Scholar-Athlete Award of Honor
2009: PAC10 All-Academic First Team
2004: Italian National Olympic Committee “Pegaso” Award for sport achievements
2012 to today: Freelance Artist, painter, designer, filmmaker
2022: Mural Artist, “La Giungla dei Sapori” at Sauro Gelateria, Lucca
2022: Mural Artist, “Escamequita Love” in Escamequita, Nicargaua
2020: Mural Artist, “Divine Dimension” at Aquaniene, Rome
2019: Co-Writer and Co-Director, documentary film “The Song That Calls You Home”, Los Angeles
2019: Assistant Editor, documentary film “Reborn: Lamar Odom”
2014: Mural Artist, “A Prayer” at Bangaolw Post Office, NSW Australia
2013: Writer-Director, short film “Familiar”
2012: Production Designer, short film “Kiss of Vengeance” – directed by Fernando Barreda Luna
2012: Art Director, short film “The Retreat” – directed by Luis Robledo
2011: Writer-Director, short film “Two For Hollywood”
2011: Storyboard Artist, feature film “The First Time” – directed by John Kasdan
2010: Storyboard Artist, music video “Sex Wichoo” – by Cedric the Soulman
2010: Storyboard Artist, TV commercial “Different but the Same” – by AllState Insurance
2010: Writer/Director, short film “Tutto Pazzo per Mary” (Ita)
2022: "Art After Dark" at The Brewery, San Juan del Sur (Nicaragua)
2019: “Visionary Art Exhibit” at World Ayahuasca Conference, Girona (Spain)
2017: Solo Exhibit, “Pop the Bubble” at Il Contemporaneo, Pistoia (Italy)
2016: Solo Exhibit, “L’infante” at Cafè LeBlanc, Pistoia (Italy)
2015: Solo Exhibit, “Andata & Ritorno” at Il Modreno, Pistoia (Italy)
2014: Solo Exhibit, “An Art Evening” at Kulcha Jam, Byron Bay (Australia)
2013: Solo Exhibit, “Graffite e Caffè” at Gallo Nero, Pistoia (Italy)