Art and God

In my more rebellious years I was tollerant of the Catholic Church only for having made possible incredible works of art and having been patron to innumerable artists. With age, as one becomes (inevitably?) more conservative, I have shifted perspective. My understanding of the link between Art and God has grown deeper, more complex and flows in both direction. 

As the Church – in the name of God -has made Art possible, so Art allows a spiritual dialogue with God. I don’t think I am the only one, that albeit little faith, feels moved by a stripped down crucifix, by the high vaults of a church or the sombre tones of a deposition from the cross. The beauty of created things stirs up God’s emotions.

Summer Basket

With summer holidays on the doorstep all you should be buying are baskets. For the beach and for the shopping, for magazines, for toys, for flowers and for the laundry. They are number one interior accessory. Or exterior for that matter. 

In a beautiful garden in Ravello, baskets as rubbish bins were a great look. Anything can go in a basket. But whatever you do don’t put a plastic bag in it!

Ten Years 

Ten years ago today Alfred and I got married. I am proud of this milestone because marriage is no easy arrangement to the problem of being in love. Especially for someone restless like me, who gets bored quite frequently. Marriage is love by design: you have to want to be married and you have to choose to love every day (well almost every day!)

Although to anyone who meets him, he appears like a saintly figure, my husband can be incredibly annoying. Just like anyone else really. But if I had to choose again who to marry, I would pick him every day of the year. For a start he understands Design. Also, he endures my tantrums and supports my follies. Perhaps most importantly, life with him is fun! So to my husband, who reads my blog religiously every morning and comments it every evening, I want to say thank you. For the first ten years. 

The Barber’s Ritual

Life is made of rituals. One of my rituals is to take, once a year, when in Bologna, my son to the barber. The barber is the same where my grandfather used to go every week to have hair and moustache trimmed. Sometime he took my brother and I along, and as my brother sat in the high chair I was allowed to read comics. 

To be perfectly honest they did a very poor job of cutting my son’s hair. I guess that is the beauty of the ritual: you just go agead no matter what. The hair will grow again!

Blow a wish

I love dandelions. They clearly cannot compete with peonies, water lillies or irisis as far as shape goes. They are colourless and odourless, but boy are they smart! A perfect example of good design. They are also gregarious, light hearted and always up for travelling. And if you are in need of a wish, just blow!

It’s a Crafty Torch

My son has a new friend. They bonded over the technicalities of LED lamps. His name is Dean Brown and he is one of the nicest people I have met lately. He also happens to be a very talented designer. He was in Graz vor the opening of Unikat – the exhibition I curated – and we took the opportunity, to organise a three days Torch Craft workshop.

Because the torches would be hand carved in wood, I decided it was the kind of activity my husband would approve of, so Cosimo could skip school and participate for half a day. He was ecstatic, but being eight years old, rather impatient with the speed at which the work was proceeding. He sketched his torch and left Dean to finish it. The result is a fantastic invention: perfectly suited to the podgy hands of a child, it looks half way between a Neanderthal tool and a Star Trek laser beam. Useless to say a complete success!

I have had to play ghosts all weekend, with me hiding in the dark and Cosimo chasing me with his new torch. Thanks Dean!

Self-examination of a Designer

 As I was clearing away the inevitable debris of the vernissage and already planning the dismanteling operations for the closing of the exhibition in two weeks, I started pondering on the ecological fallout of exhibition making. Ephemeral architecture conjures up images of lightness and immateriality, but more often than not, it leaves behind a trail of garbage. Recycling is easier said than done mainly because the recycled look still lacks style and sex-appeal. But it is a responsability that as professionals we should take. So let’s try to use sensibly all materials and make sure (almost) everything get’s reused and adapted. There are more uses to any object!