“THE ALLEGORY OF PATIENCE”: ONE OF THE MOST SIGNIFICANT PAINTINGS IN THE MEDICI COLLECTIONS ON SHOW AT PALAZZO PITTI IN FLORENCE (ITALY)

 VASARI

At Galleria Palatina (Palazzo Pitti, Florence, Italy) an exhibition opened on one of the most significant paintings in the Medici collections, The Allegory of Patience, which belonged to cardinal Leopoldo de’ Medici and is today held in the Sala di Prometeo in the same Palazzo Pitti. Initially attributed to Parmigianino in the inventories of Palazzo Pitti, catalogued in the museum’s first guides under the name of Francesco Salviati, and later attributed to Girolamo Siciolante by Federico Zeri, the painting is today recognised as fruit of the collaboration between Giorgio Vasari and Spanish artist Gaspar Becerra. Its complex collectors’ history involves important figures tied to the court of Cosimo I and Giorgio Vasari himself.

The first of these was Bernardetto Minerbetti,bishop of Arezzo and ambassador of Cosimo I, a refined man of letters and patron of the Renaissance philosophical and literary academy known as the Accademia Fiorentina. Shortly after 1550, he requested Vasari to execute a painting that in a new and emblematic manner would represent the principal virtue of his character, that is to say the art of Patience. Vasari accepted and proposed to his patron an invention inspired by ancient sculpture, enriched by a refined symbolic repertory alluding to time and to the life of man. The invention took the shape of a young woman chained to a rock, patiently waiting for the drops of water falling from a vase to corrode the stone and thus set her free. This scholarly and very cultured image would become quite popular far beyond the borders of Florence, soon reaching the Ferrara court of Ercole II d’Este who did not hesitate to use it in his ‘impresa’. In fact, a few years after Minerbetti’s painting, Duke Ercole II d’Este commissioned a new version of the Patience from Camillo Filippi, intended for the so-called “Camera della Pazienza” in the tower of Santa Caterina of his castle in Ferrara. The Duke also introduced the same personification on the verso of a famous medal that Pompeo Leoni coined in 1554, on the base of a bust sculpted by Prospero Sogari Spani and in a series of coins produced by the mint of Ferrara.

Anna Bisceglia curates the exhibition and the catalogue published by Sillabe to investigate these elements along the underlying themes of patronage, literary sources, and artists’ explorations against the complex and fascinating backdrop of the Italy of royal courts. Alongside the Vasari Allegory of Patience, visitors will see the same theme in an artwork that Camillo and Sebastiano Filippi executed in 1553-54 and currently in the Galleria Estense of Mantua. This version also inspired the portrayal of this virtue on the base of the bust of Ercole II sculpted by Prospero Sugari, known as Clemente (1554), and on the medals that Pompeo Leoni executed for the Duke (Florence, Bargello, 1554 ca.). Moreover, a large painting from the Galleria dell’Accademia of Venice will illustrate the complex genesis of this iconographic motif. It was part of a wooden coffered ceiling executed for the Corner family in 1542. Finally, the exhibition will also present the little painting on wood from the Uffizi, mistakenly known as Artemisia mourns Mausolus, which instead has been recognised as a Patience, and several drawings and engravings from the Gabinetto Disegni e Stampe of Florence and the Cabinet des Dessins du Louvre.

P.Leoni - Duca Ercole

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Exhibition Credits

Promoters

Ministero per i Beni e le Attività Culturali e Turismo, Direzione Regionale per i Beni Culturali e Paesaggistici della Toscana, Soprintendenza Speciale per il Patrimonio Storico, Artistico ed Etnoantropologico e per il Polo Museale della città di Firenze, Galleria Palatina, Firenze Musei

Exhibition Venue

Galleria Palatina – Palazzo Pitti, Florence, 26 November 2013 – 5 January 2014

Exhibition curated and Catalogue edited by Anna Bisceglia

Exhibition directed by Alessandro Cecchi

Exhibition installation designed and directed by Mauro Linari

Exhibition installation produced by Opera Laboratori Fiorentini – Civita Group

Coordination, communication and public relations: Opera Laboratori Fiorentini – Civita Group

Ticket prices

Full price: € 13.00; Concessions: € 6.50 for E.U. citizens from 18 to 25 years of age. Free admission for visitors under 18 and E.U. citizens over 65 years of age. Hours: Tuesday – Sunday: 8:15 am – 6:50 pm; ticket counter closes at 6:05 pm. Closed Mondays

AUTISM AND ART / AN EXHIBITION ABOUT THE EXPERIENCE INSPIRED BY “LACER/ACTIONS” WORKS… “SEEIN’ WHAT HUMAN BEINGS FREQUENTLY DON’T SEE”

GUEST WRITER: STEFANO ALBERTI

In last Springtime, Roberto Alborghetti works have been the focus of “Atelier of colors and emotions” project which involved in Italy (Aprilia, Latina) children with disabilities and affected by Autism Spectrum Syndrome. The activity was promoted and led by teacher Patrizia Sapri and non-profit organization “Il Senso della vita Onlus”. The experience based on Roberto images which have been reproduced manually by children. The project merged into a final exhibition tooking place some weeks ago in Tuscany (Piancastagnaio, Siena) with the title  “From Lacer/actions to Cre/actions”.

Kids worked for months on Roberto Alborghetti images, called “Lacer/actions, making some incredible works. The  exhibition in Tuscany raised lot of interest and attention comparing photographic copies of the original images by Roberto Alborghetti and the works performed by the pupils (watercolours, tempera and various materials). During the show teacher Patrizia Sapri told visitors about this unusual experience and how guys found a way to express emotions and creativity through colours and abstract from Roberto Alborghetti artworks.

The “provocative pictures” about torn and decomposed publicity posters and cracks were de-constructed and re-created by autistic kids who entered the visual world of Roberto Alborghetti receiving suggestions and emotions and re-viewing images through the sense-organs. They discovered an inner dimension to explore and learn. Music accompanied the lessons and students also created words and comments about feelings and sensations they felt while working on Roberto Alborghetti colorful works. 

Teacher Patrizia Sapri said: “The exhibition displayed works made by autistic students. I studied in the past, and rediscovered in recent days, the great lesson coming from Temple Grandin, doctor and professor at Colorado State University (USA), bestselling author and autistic activist (in 2010 she was listed in the Time 100 list of the 100 most influential people in the world, for the “Heroes” category). She said that autistics are able to see what human beings frequently don’t see. They see a “wonderful world” that people barely grasps. They perceive a series of visual stimuli that normal people can’t perceive. Autistics think in pictures. They live in a world of pictures and colors. That’s the reason why autistic kids are so fond of Roberto Alborghetti’s works which were re-created and re-lived using different tools and techniques. Based on their state of mind, they angrily painted or gently covered all spaces. In their mental order everything have to be perfect. And they have the wonderful gift to clearly see and perceive in advance – in their mind and heart – the final work.”   

CRACKS AS FRACTALS / CODES AND SIGNS FROM THE ENTANGLED MYSTERY OF REALITY

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Cracks is part of my Lacer/actions Project, about  the decomposition of torn publicity posters on outside advertisings (my realistic and not manipulated images are transferred on canvases, lithographic prints or textiles). I’ve been also researching on metal and plastic surfaces, or metal and plastic platings. This is the wonderful world of Cracks…and Fractals, incredible signs from the entangled mystery of reality.  My eyes and cameras discovered in cracks magnifications amazings textures.  Also my Cracks are realistic, natural, random and not enhanced images, as you see in this video, which features a real scene (it’s not a painting) from this real world… I took it in Milan  (Italy) last may…

THE CRACKS GALLERY – robertoalborghetti.wordpress.com

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(HE)ART PLACES / FROM MALATESTA TEMPLE TO AUGUSTUS BRIDGE AND ARCH: GREAT MONUMENTS IN RIMINI (ITALY)

 © Photos: ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI ; Tiberius (or Augustus) Bridge photo is from Wikipedia (free use).

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Rimini is the capital city of Italian vacations. It is located on the Northern coast on the Adriatic Sea. It is approximately 110kms southeast of Bologna, about three hours South of Venice and also three hours North of Rome. It is mostly a place where Italians go on vacation but also British, German, French and Russian tourists love to go there. But in Rimini – the city of the great Fellini! – visitors find some spectacular monuments: the Malatesta Temple (Tempio Malatestiano), the Arch of Augustus and the Bridge of Tiberius or Augustus.  

The Malatesta Temple – as Luigi Orsini writes in his book “The Malatesta Temple” (Bonomi Editore, Milano) – is perhaps “the only monument in the world of which it can be said that it lifted an architect to the heights of glory, immortalized the power of a potentate, and made vivid through the ages a woman’s smile. That edifice which Sigismondo Pandolfo Malatesta entrusted to Alberti’s genius for the perpetual exaltation and honour of the divine Isotta degli Atti, his mistress and consort, comprises in itself, the sweetest harmonies of art and sentiment, exquisite line and colour, subtle forms of mysticism, passion’s potent spell, in a perpetual union of real and ideal, of energy and dream, of mind and matter”.

The Tempio Malatestiano is the cathedral church of Rimini. Officially named for St. Francis, it takes the popular name from Sigismondo Pandolfo Malatesta, who commissioned its reconstruction by the famous Renaissance theorist and architect Leon Battista Alberti around 1450. St. Francis was originally a thirteenth-century Gothic church belonging to the Franciscans. The original church had a rectangular plan, without side chapels, with a single nave ending with three apses. The central one was probably frescoed by Giotto, to whom is also attributed the crucifix now housed in the second right chapel.

Malatesta called on Alberti to transform the building and make it into a kind of personal mausoleum for him and his lover and later his wife, Isotta degli Atti. The execution of the project was handed over to the Veronese Matteo di Andrea de’ Pasti, hired at the Estense court. Marble for the work was taken from the Roman ruins in Sant’Apollinare in Classe (near Ravenna) and in Fano. The Temple is immediately recognizable from its wide marble façade, decorated by sculptures probably made by Agostino di Duccio and Matteo de’ Pasti. Alberti aspired to renew the Roman structures of Antiquity, though here his inspiration was drawn from the triumphal arch, in which his main inspiration was the tripartite Arch of Constantine in Rome. The entrance portal has a triangular pediment over the door set within the center arch; geometrical decorations fill the tympanum. Due to the strong presence of elements referring to the Malatesta’s history, and to Sigismondo Pandolfo himself (in particular, his lover Isotta), the church was considered by some contemporaries to be an exaltation of Paganism.

Not so far from the Temple, located in the centre of the city, we admire the amazing Arch of Augustus (Arco d’Augusto), an Ancient Roman monument constructed in 27 BC for the Rome’s first emperor. Thought to have been the gateway to Ancient Rimini which would have formed part of the city walls, the Arch of Augustus is a fairly ornate structure depicting various deities such as Neptune, Apollo and Jupiter.

Outside the city centre, looking towards Bologna, on the old Consular road, the Via Emilia, we find the Bridge of Tiberius or Augustus, so-called through being constructed on the decree of Augustus, although afterwards finished by Tiberius (from 14 to ai A. D.). It is of white travertine, of the Doric order, and is composed of five great arches, of which the central one measures 10.50 metres in diameter and the others, 8.75 metres. The piles are laid obliquely in order to second the current without interfering with the Via Emilia, which passes above. The last arch, towards the town, was broken by the Goths in 552 to prevent the crossing of Narsete. It was restored in 1680 on the order of Innocent XI by Agostino Martinelli of Ferrara.

NOT JUST FOR LUXURY GOODS… REPORT REVEALS HOW DESIGN IS CHANGING THE WAY BUSINESSES OPERATE

© ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI - LACER-ACTIONS, 2011

© ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI – LACER-ACTIONS, 2011

Companies like BMW, Alessi and Apple use design to differentiate their products, but design is not just for luxury goods and elite products. There is considerable evidence for it acting as a mechanism for business growth and innovation. But how do companies utilise design to innovate and boost their business performance?

In his report, Leading Business by Design, which will form the basis of the Design Council Summit at the British Museum on February 12, Pietro Micheli, Associate Professor of Organizational Performance at Warwick Business School, has identified key practices through which organisations in various industries are using design to attain maximum impact, and has made eight recommendations for companies looking to gain a competitive advantage through design. Dr Micheli conducted 48 interviews with top management at 12 private companies ranging from Barclays, Diageo, Jaguar Land Rover, O2 and Virgin Atlantic to small firms like DCS Europe, Gripple and Trunki.

The report says business leaders cited sales growth, increases in market share, enhanced customer satisfaction, greater process efficiency and employee productivity as a result of investment in design. Also, design was used to open up uncontested markets, strengthening brands and differentiating products and services to attract new customers.

PIETRO MICHELI

PIETRO MICHELI

To reap the full benefit of design, though, Dr Micheli found a company needs to have it fully embedded in its organisation.

 “Our analysis reveals that the impact of design is lowest when design is seen as a service – an organisational function that has a well-defined and limited scope. It is higher when designers are involved throughout the process of new product or service development from beginning to end”,  said Dr Micheli.

“The impact of design is greatest when design and designers challenge existing assumptions and meanings of products, services, categories etc.  How does design become embedded in an organisation, part of its DNA? For all companies and particularly for SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises), the initial answer is clear: the CEO and top management have to support and believe in it. We also found that design can benefit manufacturing and service-based organisations, small, medium or large. Plus, design’s benefit is greatest when it is intimately related to solving problems, especially customers’ problems”.

From his research Dr Micheli put together eight recommendations for companies looking to maximise the impact of design:

1.     Limit the context in which design can operate

2.      Use design to differentiate

3.      Integrate design and branding

4.      Introduce a design process

5.      Trust and support your design talent

6.      Embed design in your organisational culture

7.      Design your work environment

8.      Don’t let the designer’s role be a straitjacket

Dr Micheli will present his report at the Design Council Summit in February alongside speakers David Willets, Minister for Universities and Science, Rob Brown, Head of Design at Barclays, Graham Hopkins, Executive VP Engineering & Technology, Rolls Royce, Molly Crockett, Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging and many more.

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 ABOUT PIETRO MICHELI

http://www.wbs.ac.uk/about/person/pietro-micheli

STREET FOOD AND ART: CHEF JOCK ZONFRILLO OPENS NEW RESTAURANTS IN ADELAIDE (SOUTH AUSTRALIA)

Zonfrillo

TUESDAY 12th November saw the opening day of Street-ADL and Orana restaurants by Scottish-Australian chef Jock Zonfrillo in Adelaide, South Australia. Renowned for his research into both Australia’s native ingredients and indigenous culture, Zonfrillo has opened a dual restaurant concept comprising Street-ADL, an accessible, energetic bar and dining experience and ORANA, a small, intimate restaurant offering more complex dishes. A very personal journey, Street-ADL and Orana are the cumulation of a decade’s worth of research by Scottish born Zonfrillo, who immigrated to Australia in 2000.  At that time, his search for the true taste of Australia began, taking him to all areas of the continent and resulting in a deep-rooted respect and love of country.

Street-ADL

Every nation in the world celebrates its own identity and culture through its street food.  At Street-ADL, the tastes and flavours of Australia are celebrated with dishes like Pulled Sangas (sandwiches with hot smoked kangaroo shoulder), BBQ KI Marron (Kangaroo Island marron quickly blanched and then BBQ’d with Australian mountain pepper) and Pork Ribs (marinated, slow cooked, glazed and fried in quandong and bush tomato). Street-ADL is a large bar and restaurant with shared seating for informal fun dining.  The menus are displayed in a series of light boards, creating a unique and purposeful art installation.   The use of native ingredients spreads from the dishes into the cocktail menu where classics are influenced using the flavours of quandong jam, native mint and lemon aspen, amongst others. The spontaneous energy at the bar can often overflow and, with access to these unique ingredients from the kitchen, bespoke one-off cocktails are created in the moment, such as riberry caipirinhas or cinnamon myrtle sours.  Street-ADL is about enjoyment – it’s about accessibility and having a great time with great food and great drinks. 

Orana

The upstairs restaurant, Orana, meaning “welcome” in some Aboriginal language, is by contrast a smaller restaurant for 25 guests.  It has its own separate entrance and includes a dedicated small and private lounge area. Zonfrillo has created two tasting menus that can be matched by wines or by juices suggested by the establishments’ wine director, Joshua Picken. Dishes like Fire Charred Coorong Mullet, Flax Lilly & Sweet Apple Berries or Fresh Mudcrab, Sandpaper Fig & Wild Pea showcase Jock Zonfrillo’s philosophy and journey of country.

The restaurants are located in central Adelaide in the East End District, famous for its art and food festivals. Working with local graphic design team MASH, Zonfrillo’s vision has been further manifested. “It was a unique situation to work with a client who not only had the concept strongly created in his mind, but had also purchased most of the interiors in advance,” explains Dom Roberts, Creative Director of MASH.  “Our job was to pull together all the different elements of Jock’s offering: the Bar, Street-ADL and Orana.  Street-ADL is a fun, loud, almost chaotic location with a strong, dynamic energy. However, in direct contrast, Orana is more intimate, more understated and it was here that we wanted to provide a subtle link to Jock’s amazing and visionary support of indigenous ingredients and growers. One way to create the identity of both was to create a continuous piece of art that flowed through both establishments – uniting them. We sourced the Italian artist known as 2501 to achieve this, introduced him to Jock and it went from there really.”

Italian artist 2501 has spent many years in Sao Paulo and his work covers both interior and exterior free-hand figurative and abstract work, using monochromatic wavy lines that merge into a greater whole. After immersing himself in Jock’s world, his resulting art runs from the base of Street-ADL, up and around the building into Orana.

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ABOUT JOCK ZONFRILLO

Jock Zonfrillo embraces all the elements of Australia – from ancient civilisations to the modern day – and in the process creates a food philosophy and cuisine style that are uniquely his own.  His curiosity for the land, the produce, the people and the history of the country has resulted in over a decade’s research and exploration of regional Australian produce. Street-ADL and Orana are home to the findings of that journey and its evolution.    Above all, Jock Zonfrillo embraces and connects with the ancient culture of the Aboriginal people and country. He explains, “Our cooking simply respects Australia’s food history.  We celebrate produce from all over the continent.  Of course there is a strong influence from South Australia and the abundance of local ingredients on our doorstep, stretching from the Adelaide Hills to the coast. We approach our cooking with an understanding of where our ingredients originate and the culture of the Aboriginal people, whose philosophy to heal and be healed by the land and to always give back more than you take, strongly influences the identity of our kitchen.”

Reservations for Orana can be made online: booking@restaurantorana.com or PH: +61(08)82323444.   Street-ADL does not take reservations.

GOIN’ POP… 30 SECONDS OF “LACER/ACTIONS” WORKS / THE CLIP

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Roberto Alborghetti ‘s LaceR/Actions is a multidisciplinary project and research about the apparent chaos of ripped and decomposed posters and urban/street signs. Transferred on canvases, reproduced on lithographic prints or textiles (as pure silk), re-built on collages or scanned in videoclips, the images of torn and decomposed posters give new life to paper lacerations and matter decomposition, as you may see in this clip showing some of the 50.000 images captured so far by Roberto Alborghetti during his research all around the world.

The most recent Roberto Alborghetti Show (“Colors of an Apocalypse: An Intrigue for the Eyes and Mind from the Decomposed Publicity Posters”) was displaced for 100 days in the enchanting Aldobrandesca Fortress (XIII Century) in Tuscany (Piancastagnaio, Siena, Italy) from October 6, 2012, to January 15, 2013.

A surprise public exhibition, for one night only (“Lacer/actions Show”) took place on July 14, 2013, for a special event with Historical Place in a beautiful and ancient square (Palace of Countess, Ambivere, Bergamo, Milan area, Italy). His new project “Contemplations and Lacer/actions” (album, videoclip, installations) is inspired by Thomas of Bergamo Scripts (1563-1631). “Words from the Past, Images from the Future, an Experience for Today”.