Thursday, October 16, 2008

VENICE: Palazzo Grassi - Italics

Palazzo Grassi – Italics. Francesco Bonami, curator of the Italics exhibition at Palazzo Grassi, until March 22nd, 2008, describes Italian contemporary art as a train for which some of its cars would have already crossed borders and oceans and others have been in the maze of the Italian contemporary history. “Italics. Italian Art between Tradition and Revolution, 1968-2008” is a journey into 40 turbulent years in search of an answer through the works of new, forgotten, unknown, overlooked and well-known names. “Italics” is an open journey that takes the risk of not finding an answer but perhaps uncovering more questions and more doubts. “Italics” is not a survey aimed at reaching a clear cut “Who’s Who” but instead an exploration to find out why Italy has been hovering on the threshold of a more encompassing world for so long. “Italics” has been conceived as vessel to carry the viewer into a territory which only seems familiar, but in which many of its facets remain untouched and undiscovered. The final question posed by “Italics” is why Italian artists failed to achieve the international recognition they so merited — and which the show justly hopes to provide. The success of “Italics” will be measured by its capacity to provide many possible answers and discover even more questions.” Francesco Bonami.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics – Maurizio Cattelan – All, 2008 – Carrara marble, 9 Sculptures. As well as displaying a playful irreverence towards the icons of art and power, Maurizio Cattelan explores the suffering, unhappiness and dissatisfaction that seems to be part of contemporary life, In All, he deals with the slaughter, persecution and martyrdom that recur throughout human history – issues which, like Cattelan’s own art, trouble and disturb our collective Unconscious. All invites us to reflect upon how the violence, which has become such a feature of our society can make each and every dead person into an anonymous cadaver.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics. Monique Veaute.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics. Yervant Gianikian and Angela Ricci Lucchi – Cesare Lombroso – Sull’Odore del Garofano, 1976 – 16mm film transferred to DVD, 12’. Film makers much appreciated abroad but rather underestimated in Italy, Gianikian and Ricci Lucchi would, from the mid-70s onwards experiment with so called “scented films”: screenings/performances in which the moving image was accompanied by scents and odors intended to stir olfactory memories. Cesare Lombroso – Sull’Odore del Garofano was filmed in Turin home/museum of the (in)famous criminologist, Strassmann, a disciple of Lombroso’s, had in fact carried out a series of experiments on criminals’ sense of smell, reaching the conclusion that it was substantially less sensitive than that of non-criminals.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics. Marina and Vittorio Gregotti.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics. Servane Giol and Marie Brandolini d’Adda.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics. One of the saloni of Palazzo Grassi seen from the balcony.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics: Mario Ceroli – Le Bandiere di Tutto il Mondo, 1968 – colored earth in zinc containers. In Le Bandiere di Tutto il Mondo, Mario Ceroli takes the flag motif so beloved of American Pop artists and treats it in a more expansive, spectacular manner. The national emblems are no longer “real” but recreated in bands of brightly-colored earth within zinc containers: these latter are then linked together in a well-ordered “crowd,” a visual embodiment of the notion of collective existence.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics.
Nicolo Dona delle Rose.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics – detail. The fire extinguisher is Nicolo Dona delle Rose’s favorite “work of art” in Palazzo Grassi.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics. Bianca Loredan, Francesco and Jane da Mosto.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics. Alessandra Gaggia.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics: Salvo – The Tombstones, 1970-1972 – marble. These "Tombstones” show the artist raising veritable memorials to himself the creator and subject of each work. In fact, the tombstones – the very symbol of the end of life – become a monument to the continuing life of the artist.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics – detail. Salvo – Io Sono il Migliore, 1970 - marble.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics. Annamaria Sbrisa and Andrea Zucchi.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics.
Piero Gilardi.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics: Piero Gilardi – Sassaia di Fiume, 1968 – expanded polyurethane.
Along with Joseph Beuys and Gustav Metzger, Piero Gilardi was probably one of the first European artists to explore the relation between art, ecology and ethics. Among his most famous works is the series Tappeti-Natura, which includes the Sassaia di Fiume. In man-made materials, these works are faithful reproduction of natural eco-systems (for example, river beds, meadows or other areas of natural landscape). They remind us of a long gone world by showing us one in which Nature only survives as a pale copy of itself.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics.
Jasmine and Philippe Starck.

Palazzo Grassi – Italics: Michelangelo Pistoletto – Le Trombe del Giudizio, 1968 – Aluminum. The need for a convergence of art and life is the theme of Trombe del Giudizio, part of the performance, which Michelangelo Pistoletto calls Azioni. Here, the artist’s determination to bring together art and life finds playful expression in the use of three old radio loudspeakers (bought in the flea market in Turin) as musical instruments. Pistoletto performed on these first in the courtyard of his studio and then in various public places.
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VENICE: Palzzo Grassi - Italics

VIDEO: VENICE - Palazzo Grassi - Italics. Francesco Vezzoli - An Embroidered Trilogy, video screening 12' Francesco Vezzoli defines himself as a “director-embroiderer” given that his art hinges on the relation between his two main interests: embroidery and cinema. For the artist, embroidery is the “private answer to the star system.” A personal refuge, it is also an activity, which, in contrast to the technological world of video and cinema, is intimately bound up with the worlds of the past and of femininity. An Embroidered trilogy – comprising Ok, the Praz is right, Il sogno di Venere and The End (Teleteatro) – immediately introduces the spectator into the complex imaginary world of the artist’s two obsessions, a world which hovers between dream and reality.

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Thursday, October 09, 2008

Milano: Spring Summer RTW 2009

Milan Fashion Week. What better assignment than to watch and guard outside the fashion boutiques. Carabinieri sit outside the Dior boutique on the trendy via Montenapoleone.
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Milano: Spring Summer RTW 2009

Vogue Russia party.
A fabulous party in the gardens of the beautiful Casa degli Atellani to celebrate ten years of Russian Vogue. Matthew Williamson and the hostess and editor in chief of Russian Vogue, Aliona Doletskaya.

Vogue Russia party. Bernd Runge and Frida Giannini.

Vogue Russia party. Neil Barrett and Karla Otto.

Vogue Russia party. Elisa and Stefano Giovannoni.

Vogue Russia party.
Lucia Mantero.

Vogue Russia party. Guests in the garden.

Vogue Russia party. Stefano Gabbana, Frida Giannini and Domenico Dolce.

Vogue Russia party. Verde Visconti.

Vogue Russia party. Stefano Guidani.

Vogue Russia party. Bucci e Michele Norsa.

Vogue Russia party. Vito Rossi and Francesca Ballini Richards.

Vogue Russia party. Nathalie Jean.

Vogue Russia party. Didier Bonnin and Ursula Crespi.

Vogue Russia party. Annamaria Sbriza.

Vogue Russia party.
Luisa Beccaria and Lucilla Bonaccorsi di Reburdone.
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Milano: Spring Summer RTW 2009

Gianfranco Ferre. Respect for an absolute love of elegance, the spontaneous elegance that comes from self-knowledge and so is never distinct from a secret inner oneiric essence. This is what modulates the Gianfranco Ferre women’s collection for Spring/Summer 2009, the first under the creative direction of Tommaso Aquilano and Roberto Rimondi. Fluid and constructed all in one, the collection draws upon the Italian tradition of fine tailoring to define a unique contemporary style which bypasses every hint of folk as it gives life to surprising silhouettes. The collection is in utter sync with the great heritage of Gianfranco Ferre.

Gianfranco Ferre. The new Gianfranco Ferre creative directors, Tommaso Aquilano and Roberto Rimondi pose with Ferre’s owner, Tonino Perna. Both men wear navy blue sweaters reminiscent of the surplus sailor Genovese sweaters one used to buy at the Livorno market in the 1960s.

Gianfranco Ferre – detail. Tommaso wears two big silver rings, one on each hand.

Gianfranco Ferre – detail. Tommaso wears his Louis Vuitton belt to one side.

Gianfranco Ferre – detail. Both designers wear jeans but sport very different shoes; Tommaso in velvet slippers and Roberto in Adidas.

Gianfranco Ferre. Gianfranco Ferre's CEO, Michela Piva welcomes guests to the show in a vintage Gianfranco Ferre long knitted grey dress.

Gianfranco Ferre – detail. A diamond encrusted safety pin designed by Gianfranco Ferre.

Gianfranco Ferre. Author and journalist, Donatella Sartorio chats with Pitti Immagine’s president, Gaetano Marzotto and his beautiful journalist wife, Albertina.

Gianfranco Ferre. Max Mara’s Giorgio Guidotti and Laura Lusuardi have come to support Tommaso Aquilano and Roberto Rimondi who worked for ten years at Max Mara. This is there debut collection under the Gianfranco Ferre label.

Gianfranco Ferre. American Vogue’s editor in Chief, Anna Wintour.

Gianfranco Ferre – detail. This is all Anna carries around with her: a palm, black glasses and bordeaux leather notebook/wallet.

Gianfranco Ferre. In a purple sleeveless blouse, fashion stylist to the stars, Rachel Zoe is scouting looks for the red carpet.

Gianfranco Ferre. French Vogue’s editor in chief, Carine Roitfeld and Emanuele Alt.

Gianfranco Ferre. Italian Vogue
’s, Anna Piaggi.

Gianfranco Ferre – detail. A big velvet and leather bag designed by Barbara Hulanicki for Coccinelle and a sky blue walking stick are just part of Anna Piaggi’s look.

Gianfranco Ferre. Vanity Fair’s fashion director, Michael Roberts.

Gianfranco Ferre – detail. Michael Roberts’s real Contax film camera with Zeiss lense. “I hate digital cameras.” He told me. Michael has just launched another book entitled, Fashion Victims.

Gianfranco Ferre. Stylish editor in chief of La Repubblica’s Velvet magazine supplement, Michela Gattermayer.
Note: the silk Mantero scarf tied loosely around her neck, the black tee shirt, the rose tattoo, the five pearl earrings, the Indian rings and Rolex gold watch. Everything is beautifully and casually put together.

Gianfranco Ferre – detail.
A close up of Michela Gattermayer’s precious stones and gold enamel Indian rings.

Gianfranco Ferre – front.
The front of the grey bustier-dress with “samurai’ embroidery.

Gianfranco Ferre – back. The back of the grey bustier-dress with “samurai” embroidery.
Note: the Big white fan ruffle and big black bow.

Gianfranco Ferre – detail. The shoes with hemispheric heels in Plexiglas and metal: otherwise with skinny heels set on metal forms reminiscent of the basic atom’s molecular structure.

Gianfranco Ferre.
Ferre’s new Vice-President for Public Relations in the U.S.A., Carlos de Souza, organized the press conference backstage in between the two shows.

Gianfranco Ferre – detail.
Bracelets designed by Carlos de Souza for his line The Most Wanted Design Jewelry and a classic gold watch by Jaeger Le coultre.

Gianfranco Ferre – detail. Carlos de Souza’s jewelry in black and brown diamonds from his The Most Wanted Design Jewelry collection.

Gianfranco Ferre. Backstage Cristina Derosas keeps everything under control.
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