Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Venice: Teatrino di Palazzo Grassi - Fashion in Film Il Manto e La Pelle – Inferno Unseen – Workshop Nanni Strada

Teatrino di Palazzo Grassi
Fashion in Film
On the occasion of the ten-year anniversary of the Fashion in Film Festival, London, the Teatrino di Palazzo Grassi presented a cycle of screenings open to the public and a workshop for students dedicated to exploring the relationship between fashion, cinema and art.
Above. Fashion designer Nanni Strada who conducted a workshop and presented  her film Il Manto e La Pelle.

Fashion Aperture
Fashion Designers and the Moving Image

The three-day workshop Fashion Aperture - Fashion Designers and the Moving Image, investigated the relationships between fashion and new technologies and, in particular, the use of film by fashion designers as a tool for expression, planning and communication, from the beginning of the 20th century to today. 

 Caroline Evans, Alessandra Vaccari and Nanni Strada

The workshop was created and organized by Alessandra Vaccari, Iuav University of Venice, and Caroline Evans, Central Saint Martins College, University of the Arts London, with the participation of fashion designer Nanni Strada.

1970s Radical Fashion in Motion

Il Manto e La Pelle introduced by Nanni Strada
Italian fashion designer Nanni Strada has devoted her career to developing unconventional ways of thinking about clothing. In 1971 she designed the so-called abito abitabile (habitable dress) with no lining, no fixed size, adjustable fastenings and no reinforcements, kept together by ‘welding stitches’ (derived from knitwear). Searching for architectural purism in clothing, she has developed her research and design practice over a period of several decades, while also contributing to the theory and culture of fashion design with books such as Moda Design (Modo, 2000), and Lezioni. Moda Design e Cultura (Lupetti, 2013).

Photograph still from Il Manto e La Pelle – courtesy Nanni Strada Design Studio

 Il Manto e la Pelle - 1973 - Metaprogetto and Film
Nanni Strada with Clino T. Castelli
This workshop considered the key role that film played in making visible the radical anti-consumerist ideals of the 1970s Italian Design scene. Against this background, the workshop focused on Nanni Strada’s pioneering film Il Manto e la Pelle (The Mantle and the Skin) and provided a unique opportunity to meet the designer herself. Presented at the XV Milan Triennale (1973), the film explained and promoted her new system of ‘dressing design’: geometric, two-dimensional, compressible clothes assembled with futuristic stitching (the Mantle series) and tight tubular garments without seams – a seamless suit (the Skin series).


Nanni Strada - Pantysol – Tubular Dress without Seams

Nanni Strada – Torchon – Pleated Tubular Dress
Winner - Compasso D’Oro - 1976

  Still from The Inferno Unseen – courtesy MUBI

 Teatrino di Palazzo Grassi 
The Inferno Unseen (15)

with live electronic score by Rollo Smallcombe
Teatrino di Palazzo Grassi celebrated 10 years of the Fashion in Film Festival. Fashion in Film, MUBI and Lobster Films created a new cut of Henri-Georges Clouzot’s 1964 The Inferno. The Inferno Unseen resurfaces the original rushes of Clouzot’s unfinished feature, in a series of kinetic and optical experiments set against a newly-commissioned live electronic score by Rollo Smallcombe.

“The original rushes came like a pack of cards that had been very well shuffled. The music is 100% composed specifically for the new cut. That way it can really connect with the edit of the visuals. I wanted to create a soundscape that responded directly to the footage. I like to think that Clouzot’s original treatments and my electronic score feed off each other to offer a fresh take.”
Rollo Smallcombe
London based music producer, composer and filmmaker

Mubi’s Kiri Inglis – Palazzo Grassi’s Martina Malobbia – Fashion in Film director Marketa Uhlirova - Palazzo Grassi’s

Jacqueline Feldmann

   Still from The Inferno Unseen – courtesy MUBI

The Inferno Unseen – UK - 2017
The edit exclusively features film rushes for Henri-Georges Clouzot’s unfinished film Inferno (1964), left behind in 185 cans at the CNC Archive and re-discovered by Lobster Films in 2007. It is edited by Rollo Smallcombe and Marketa Uhlirova and features Serge Bromberg’s voice.  Clouzot’s cameramen Andreas Winding, Claude Renoir and Armand Thirard shot some twelve hours of film footage, showing abstract kinetic experiments and actors including Romy Schneider, Serge Reggiani, Dany Carrel and Jean-Claude Bercq captured in a number of wardrobe, screen and optical effects tests. The focus is primarily on Schneider performing simple, seductive actions in carefully composed mises-en-scene.

Romy Schneider, Serge Reggiani, Dany Carrel, Jean-Claude Bercq, Jacques Gamblin, Bernard Stora, Brigitte Bardot
Cinematography Andréas Winding - Armand Thirard  - Claude Renoir
Costumes - Jacques Fonteray

Mario Lupano

Sergio Gallozzi, Maria Grazia Rosin and Galliano Mariani

    Still from The Inferno Unseen – courtesy MUBI

The Inferno Unseen – UK - 2017


Mike, Jill and Jessica Smallcombe

Alexis Sornin

    Still from The Inferno Unseen – courtesy MUBI

 The Inferno Unseen – UK – 2017
Romy Schneider
Departing from Serge Bromberg’s critically acclaimed documentary about Clouzot’s film (2009), The Inferno Unseen focuses solely on the haunting and often beautifully colour-lit visions. Here the union between the filmic and the sartorial is made all the more striking by the unique temporality of a screen test performance.

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Saturday, January 27, 2018

Venice: Ca' Pesaro – Veneziano Pop – Luciano Zarotti

 Ca' Pesaro International Gallery of Modern Art
Veneziano Pop - Luciano Zarotti e Ca' Pesaro negli anni '70-'80
At Ca' Pesaro International Gallery of Modern Art, Veneziano Pop - Luciano Zarotti e Ca' Pesaro negli anni '70-'80 is curated by Stefano Annibaletto and Marina Wallace and is on view until February 18.  The new exhibition project reconsiders a nodal aspect of Luciano Zarotti's work between the early 70s and the late 80s.  

Luciano Zarotti – Il Pittore e la Modella (Lo Studio del maestro)
1979 -2017 – oil – tempera grassa on canvas

Luciano Zarotti – Il Segreto del Pittore
1982 – oil – tempera magra on canvas

Luciano Zarotti – La Stanza
1974 – tempera magra on canvas
In 1967 Luciano Zarotti, at the age of twenty-five, started his activity within the Opera Bevilacqua La Masa of Venice in one of the ateliers given to young artists at Palazzo Carminati; where he worked until 1975. Previously, in Paris, where he had lived, the impact with European Pop Art shakes deeply his visual culture based on the Venetian figurative tradition. Since coming into contact with Graham Sutherland’s drawings, Zarotti's emotional rapture for the nature, the islands and the water of the lagoon is grafted into a plant symbolism that becomes a prominent element in the composition of his paintings and together with the discovery of David Hockney's pools, his dives and his blues, these images stretch in a score concerted on a new perception of the space.

Photograph courtesy MUVE – Ca Pesaro

Luciano Zarotti – La Dea dell’Abbondanza
1973 – oil on canvas
Luciano Zarotti’s large paintings, made since the late 70s, move towards a realism and a composition that come closer to New Italian Figuration and evoke the tensions of the period with broken constructions, scratched figures, a darker palette and that attention to the light learned from the masters of the past. In 1987 an anthological exhibition at the Bevilacqua La Masa closes this extended artistic season, which will result in new pictorial researches.

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Monday, January 22, 2018

New York: Design - Remembering Wendell Castle

Design - Remembering Wendell Castle
“We have lost a giant in the world of design.” Writes Glen Adamson on the Friedman Benda Gallery website.  “Inexhaustibly creative to the last, Wendell Castle was in the midst of preparing a new body of work when he passed away this week, at the age of eighty-five. It was typical of him. Wendell was a man who never stopped dreaming, or making those dreams a reality.”
The Last time I photographed Wendell Castle was at the Friedman Benda Gallery in New York in 2016, above, on the occasion of the Andrea Branzi Interiors exhibition.
Wendell Castle and Marc Benda

Wendell Castle - Ghost Rider  
Rocking Chair – 2010
Barry Friedman Ltd.
“A decade before the concept of “radical design” emerged, he began re-imagining the furniture form at every level. His earliest works were at once sinuous and sculptural, all choreographed curves, not a straight line or right angle to be seen. They were made using traditional joinery, but with highly unconventional cage-like structures and muscular curved components, which he carved from gunstocks, having found a supply of unused blanks at a nearby armament factory.  He made massive bio-morphic tables, capacious seating forms, twisting spiral staircases, un-categorizable pieces that engaged the walls and floor of a room in unconventional ways. While he was operating in the discipline of furniture, he retained the instincts and formal references of sculpture – the work was more indebted to Henry Moore than anything else that was happening then or indeed, had ever happened before in furniture design.
He was also a hugely important ambassador for American craft and design. Soft-spoken and true to his modest midwestern roots, he cut a dashing figure. Always stylish in his candy-colored spectacles, well-tailored jackets and spotless shoes, his quietly confident presence lifted the tone of any gathering.”
Glen Adamson

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Thursday, January 18, 2018

Veneto – Ode to Prosecco

Nally Bellati - A Prosecco Vineyard in Winter
instagram: contessanally

 Ode to Prosecco #1
 "...Don't be light as a feather, be light as a bird.”
Life is but a landscape
unnoticeably passing by
we can sit back and watch it
or reach for the sky

Paths to follow
mountains to climb
stretching before us
like the passage of time

Each new day
casts varying light
inspiring thought
provoking insight

Never a blank canvas
nor a closed book
for with each new season
comes a brand new look

Softly as the snow falls
gentle as a breeze
raging as a gail
that tears through the trees

Laid out before us
need we enquire
nature intended
life to inspire
Denise Newton

 Nally Bellati - Prosecco Grapes
instagram: contessanally

Ode To Prosecco #2
Wizened vines heavy with their loads
Waiting to be relieved, to rest again
Morning mist and midday furnace
The work is urgent, the vintage sweet

As fatigue and sweat become intense
The church bell signs a needed break
An olive tree gives welcome shade
It's harvest still in infancy

A linen cloth beneath those branches
A place to spread a hearty lunch
Parma ham, ciabatta bread
The Dolcelatte deftly spread

Glistening rough and ruby wine
Slips from grainy earthen jugs
To restore life and health and heart
For this is as it ever was
Gino Della-Ragione

  Photograph courtesy Vallis Mareni

Ode To Prosecco #3
"Fly away to Veneto
and sample the wine
'neath the shade of the bell tower
the Ombra's devine"
Dee O'mahony

The poems above were submitted for the Ombra Poetry Competition, created to promote Ombra Prosecco in the U.K. The poems had to be inspired by Paul Valery’s quote: “Don’t’ be light as a feather, be light as a bird…” The winner won a week-end for two people in the Prosecco area and Venice!

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