I was recently reminded of one of my favorite artists by, of all people, Ivanka Trump. In the November issue of Food & Wine, she lists Fornasetti’s plates Themes and Variations among her favorite things.
If you’ve ever seen a Fornasetti image, you’ll understand why. Piero Fonasetti’s inventive use of graphics, architectural details and period touches transformed the most basic household and personal items to iconic objects of desire. Fornasetti spent his life in Milan, Italy and created over 11,000 items and graphic images, many of them starring the face of opera diva of the day, Lina Cavalieri.
His Julia plate features a woman’s sensuous visage imposed on clock face. It is part of the ultra luxe Rosenthal China collection which collectors can buy new or used. Fornasetti’s clever collection of neckties range from mathematical images to celestial ones, each one an exciting design play on what is often simply a boring fabric noose.
Even Fornasetti’s website is a visual delight. Please go now and see for yourself! To learn more about the artist, there are lots of Fornasetti articles online but my favorite is from designboom written by another famous Italian designer Ettore Sottsass.
My own deep desire is to sleep in Fornasetti’s bed in Italy. My husband’s fine with that as long as he can come along! Actually, Fornasetti’s son is keeping the dream alive by renting out rooms in an elegant guest apartment in Milan for vacationers seeking total Fornasetti immersion. The New York Times wrote about it here.
For a comprehensive overview, check out the illustrated Fornasetti:Designer of Dreams featuring many of his whimsical, amusing, fantastical and haunting designs. In paperback, it’s selling for $32.18 on Amazon.
Holiday Gift Alert: Any family members or friends reading this post should note that any Fornasetti item would make a lovely holiday or birthday gift for moi! Of course, you may develop Fornasetti lust yourself which would be perfectly understandable!