Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Bologna: Ex Ospedale degli Innocenti – Add Fire - Premio Furla 2013.

Bologna: Ex Ospedale degli Innocenti – Add Fire - Premio Furla 2013. Established in 2000, and conceived and curated by Chiara Bertola, the Premio Furla aims to support the finest artistic efforts in Italy by monitoring, selecting and training new artists, and facilitating the production of new works. Five Italian curators, each backed by a foreign guest curator, selected the five finalists artists, which are on show, until February 6, in the monumental building of the Ex Ospedale degli Innocenti in the center of town. The title of the exhibit, the ninth so far, is Add Fire, Jimmi Durham, patron artist of the 2013 Premio Furla, who specially created the logo.
Above: Installation by winner Chiara Fumai, Chiara Fumai Legge Valerie Solanas or Chiara Fumai reads Valerie Solanas.

Add Fire - Premio Furla 2013: And the winner is…. Chiara Fumai. In Chiara Fumai Legge Valerie Solanas, the writer Valerie Solanas (1936-1988) partly takes over the body and voice of Chiara Fumai to recite together with her, excerpts from the SCUM Manifesto in its original language of English.  Written by Solanas in 1967, the purpose of the manifesto was to demonstrate the inferiority of men, and it consequently became a criticism of women who behave submissively towards men.

Add Fire - Premio Furla 2013 – Chiara Fumai. To explain Solanas’ main arguments from a scientific and objective point of view, Fumai creates a diagram containing video performance reminiscent of a declaration of war or an announcement to enter politics.
Add Fire - Premio Furla 2013 – Chiara Fumai.  The diagram allows you to distance yourself from the contents of the manifesto, per se, instead of focusing on the breadth of its message.  Tragic, but at the same time comical, the work examines the function of language and its subversive capabilities.

Pin It

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Friuli: Lifestyle – A Couscous Lunch

photograph and copyright by manfredi bellati

Friuli: Lifestyle – A Couscous Lunch. At the palazzo L’Agricola, a former agricultural building, in a charming hamlet in a little town of the Fiuli region of northern Italy, a couscous lunch was elegantly prepared.


A Couscous lunch. Our host, the gentleman, designer and aesthetic Carlo Piccolomini with his Cavalier King Charles, Titania are photographed by the upstairs fireplace over which hangs a portrait by Manfredi Bellati of the adorable Spaniel.


The elegance and simplicity of the table settings in the dinning room welcomes guests with two tables in front of the fireplace.  

The cheese soufflés.

On the kitchen table the meal is ready to be served

Cheese Soufles
Vegetables cooked in broth
Cooked Fennel and poppy seed salad
Pumpkin and Spinach Quiches
Assortment of cheeses from the Natisone Valley and Gorgonzola
Mostarda Veneta

Cousous with ratatouille and vegetables cooked in broth.

The cheeseboard. On the cheeseboard two local cheeses, from the Matayur region in the Valley of Natisone, they are made with unpasteurized milk, together with a classic Gorgonzola dolce, are all delicious eaten with Mostarda Veneta, boiled fruit in a spicy syrup.

The desserts: A chestnut semifreddo together with traditional deep fried carnival pastries were a delicious  ending to the meal.

Carlo Piccolomini and his sister Benedetta Piccolomini who is a garden designer and who together with landscape architect, Paolo Sgaravatti and neurologist, Francesca Meneghello are the driving force behind The Healing Garden, Un Giardino Per Rivivere, at the San Camillo Hospital on the Lido in Venice.   It’s a healing garden for the senses, a natural place, where sound, touch, color and smell contribute a therapeutic relief to suffering for the patients. Please contact the website if you would like to donate time or money for this worthwhile project, which hopefully will be ready this summer.

The guests are happy.

And... Titania hopes there are leftovers.

Pin It

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Codroipo: Villa Manin – Giambattista Tiepolo exhibition.

photograph and copyright manfredi bellati

Codroipo: Villa Manin – Giambattista Tiepolo exhibition. The majestic ensemble of Villa Manin, located in Passariano, Codroipo near Udine, is the venue for the Giambattista Tiepolo exhibition, on view until April 7. The villa is one of the most important artistic monuments in Friuli Venezia Giulia. It was commissioned in the 17th century by Ludovico I Manin to celebrate the wealth and power of the Manin family, and it was the family’s country house.  I find that it is a pity that the shutters on windows are shut on the central block, giving the villa a sense of unwelcomed ‘neglect’, though inside it is very much ‘alive’ with this beautifully installed exhibition.

 photograph and copyright manfredi bellati



 On the lateral portico banners announce the Giambattista Tiepolo exhibition, curated by Giuseppe Bergamini, Alberto Craievich and Filippo Pedrocco, over sixty paintings and seventy drawings are on show.

 Photograph courtesy Villa Manin

Villa Manin – Giambattista Tiepolo exhibition. Tiepolo was arguably the most famous Venetian painter in the eighteenth century, the tireless creator of monumental paintings on canvas or frescoes, the indisputable holder of the monopoly of palace decorating both in Venice and on the mainland. Princes and kings from all over Europe contended for his services. The exhibition chronicles his long and prolific activity through a group of particularly significant works, depicting religious and secular subjects, and best representing the enormous variety of works that were commissioned to the painter: allegorical ceilings, altar pieces, decorations in villas.
Above: Abraham visited by the Angels – Venice, Scuola Grande di San Rocco, oil on canvas.
Contessanally note: Except for the audio, there are no English or any other foreign language texts in the exhibition, not even in the catalogue. It still amazes me how these expensive important exhibitions are mounted in a globalized world without the aspiration of attracting foreign visitors.


photograph and copyright manfredi bellati

Villa Manin – Giambattista Tiepolo exhibition. The exhibition also includes several enormous paintings since, as the painter himself once said, "Painters must be able to carry out large works [...] hence the Painter's mind must always strive to achieve Sublimation, Heroism, Perfection".  
Above:  an 1894 quote on Tiepolo by American art historian, Bernard Berenson, “The sensitivity of Tiepolo, for strength, movement, color was large enough to give a new impulse to art.  Sometimes he seems not so much the last of the old masters, but the first of the new.”
Santa Cecilia – 1763-1765 – Barcellona Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya.


Villa Manin – Giambattista Tiepolo exhibition. In some cases, the elaborate preparatory work - from the drawings to the sketch and finally to the completed work - is displayed in such great detail that one feels deeply engrossed in Tiepolo's magical world. Particularly delightful are the paintings with historical or mythological subjects, where the painter released his impetuous artistic ability to the full: he did not restrict himself to depicting famous past events, but went on to examine the inner disposition of his characters, bringing to the fore their passions and personal qualities. Equally important and of great emotional impact are the paintings commissioned for churches, as they remind us that Tiepolo was the last inspired painter of Western sacred art.
Above: Study of male character with his hands behind his back – white and red chalk.

The famous Italian dramatist Carlo Goldoni defined Villa Manin and its grand park as “a dwelling fit for a king” and the awe it inspires is still the same today. 

Pin It

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Carbonera: Tesa dei Tiepolo – Agricultural Folklore – Panevin.

photo and copyright by manfredi bellati

Carbonera: Tesa dei Tiepolo – Agricultural Folklore – Panevin. In the fields of the park of the sixteenth century Villa Tiepolo Passi near Treviso, just north of Venice, the Panevin bonfire party took place.  In Northeastern Italy, the celebration Panevin or bread and wine, is held on the evening of January fifth, the eve of the Epiphany. Traditionally a straw witch dressed with old clothes, is placed on a bonfire and burned to ash. The witch symbolizes the past and the direction of the smoke indicates whether the New Year is going to be a good one or a bad one agriculturally.


Host Alberto Passi lights the bonfire.

Tesa dei Tiepolo: Panevin. From the direction of which the smoke and the sparks take, it will determine the favorable or the unfavorable auspices for the New Year.  The Nursery Rhyme in Veneto dialect tells the story:

Se ‘l fumo va a marina

bondansa de farina!

Se ‘l fumo va al mare

Ghe xe tanto da penare!

Se ‘l fumo va a montagna

‘a saran a gran cucagna!

El fumo verso sera

Tanta poenta s’a caliera!

El fumo a matina

Tote el saco e va a farina!

If the smoke goes towards the harbor,
an abundance of flour!
If the smoke goes to the sea,
much to suffer!
If the smoke goes to the mountains, it will be a great year!
The smoke goes towards evening,
a lot of polenta in the pot!
The smoke goes towards morning,
gather the sack and go search for flour!

Hostess Barbara Passi.


Bright young aristos. Engineer in the works Cristina Franchin and events organizer Lucia Passi.


Bright young aristos. Multimedia developer specialized in museum installations Luigi Tommaseo Ponzetta and The Guardian’s Rebecca Turner.

A waiter brings, from the Tesa dei Tiepolo, hot vin brule to warm the guests in the field around the bonfire.


Bright Young Things*. Former graphic designer Valentina Pietrobon now owns and runs, during the season, a bar, restaurant and disco on the Baia Cea beach in Sardinia called, Mi casa Es TuCasa.
Contessanally note: Bright Young Things*is the title “borrowed” from Brooke De Ocampo’s book about young entrepreneurs in New York and London, published by Assouline.

Bright Young Things. Chef Andrea Conte and Ruth Morehouse who heads up the Menwear design team at Benetton.

Tesa dei Tiepolo: Panevin. The bonfire of Panevin has a purifying meaning; it clears all the evil and the old things of the past year, paving the way for the new and a rebirth.


Children watch the flames of the bonfire.

photo and copyright by manfredi bellati

Tesa dei Tiepolo: Panevin.  The Tesa dei Tiepolo is the former hayloft and cowshed building of the Villa Tiepolo Passi.  It has been restructured to serve as a venue for elegant parties, receptions and weddings and is available for rental.  It was here that the Panevin party was held with rustic traditional food, as the occasion requires.

 photo and copyright by manfredi bellati

Tesa dei Tiepolo: Panevin.  In the cowshed of the Tesa dei Tiepolo the befana is hung. In Italian folklore the befana is an old woman who delivers gifts to children throughout Italy on the Eve of the Epiphany. She fills their socks with candy and presents if they are good or a lump of coal or dark candy if they are bad.

Tesa dei Tiepolo: Panevin – Pinza #1.  “This cake is from Veneto region: It's traditionally made the Twelfth Night 's eve and it's eaten coming home from the bonfires. The cake is dense and moist, made with paysan "poor" ingredients.” Nigella Lawson.
Nigella’s Recipe: Pinza Veneta (Meal FlourCake from Veneto)

300 g meal flour (farina gialla) - 200 g flour -
200 g butter, softened
- 200 g sugar - 50 g sultanas, soaked in some aniseed liqueur - 10 dry figs, cut in small pieces -
1 apple cut in small pieces - 
1 tbsp aniseeds - 1 tsp baking powder.
1. Put the meal and white flours in a pan with sugar. Add hot water and cook to obtain quite a stiff polenta.
2. Keep on mixing and after 20 minutes add the butter, sultanas, liqueur, aniseeds, dry figs and apples.
3. Cook for a further 20 minutes, always stirring the mixture
4. Pour in a rectangular cake tin lined with wet greaseproof paper and cook in the preheated oven at 170 until brown on the top.

 Tesa dei Tiepolo: Panevin – Pinza #2.  Another Pinza made with another type of flour.  The cake was served with Mascarpone and/or Mostarda Veneta, made by the Contessa Passi herself. Mostarda Veneta is a sweet-spicy fragrant mixture that contains whole pieces of candied fruit and is ideal served with festive cakes, Panettones or boiled meats.

  Bright young aristos. J.P. Morgan’s London based Giovanni Ciani Bassetti, journalist Gaia Passi and Montcler’s worldwide entertainment and events manager Gian Luca Passi. Giovanni and Gian Luca also produce the Fiol wine label, made with grapes from their family vineyards.   We are a group of friends, wine enthusiasts, in love with Italy and Italian wines, with a passion for Prosecco. We live and travel around the world and we all came to the conclusion that nothing out there truly embodied what Prosecco is for us.” They state.   The name Fiol comes from the 1400s Venetian slang used by the young to address the "cool guy".


Tesa dei Tiepolo: Panevin.   Contessa Barbara’s Cotognata is made with quince from the Villa Tiepolo Passi agricultural estate, where they are grown using completely natural methods. Cotognata, preserves, candied fruits, piquant, sweets and Mostarda Veneta are prepared using an ancient Venetian process which dates back to the 1300s and is a specialty of the Villa Tiepolo Passi.

Bright young aristos.  Florentine based antiquaire Aloisia Marzotto Caotorta, Marco Passi who takes care of the family Palazzo Tiepolo in Venice, a charming B & B on the Gran Canal, architect Raquel Pedrali designs Italian furniture in China for the Chinese market and Luca Innocenti who runs the Colombini furniture domestic market and finance department in Bejing, China.

Cute Coco enjoys the party too.

Tesa dei Tiepolo: Panevin.   A mix of radicchio salad leaves from Treviso and a cream of lentils for good luck at the beginning of the year was served.  This hearty rustic dish is traditionally served with fagioli or beans (rather than lentils) and should be topped with a splash of vinegar.

Tesa dei Tiepolo: Panevin.   Last but not least, the befana who is usually portrayed as an old lady riding a broomstick and wearing a black shawl. Being a good housekeeper, many say she will sweep the floor before she leaves. To some the sweeping meant the sweeping away of the problems of the year.
Pin It