March 2018 / 2 posts found
Leonardo da Vinci at the World Figure Skating Championship
Our beloved Leonardo da Vinci will be protagonist tonight at the opening ceremony of the World Figure Skating Championship, which this year is being hosted by our city, Milan.
Leonardo is a constant presence in Bella Milano guided walking tours and in this blog; after all, he lived here 25 years of his life, the longest period of time that he spent in just one place. And he dearly loved Milan, the city where he could follow all his many interests, where his versatility was truly appreciated, and his genius could blossom freely.
For tonight’s ceremony, the renowned choreographer Corrado Giordani, art director of the event, has focused on three key elements.
The one that everybody will recognize is the Vitruvian Man. The most famous of Leonardo’s drawings, it depicts a man in two superimposed positions with his arms and legs apart and inscribed in a circle and square. An iconic picture, so widespread that it can be found even on Nasa spacesuits, the Vitruvian Man represents the ideal proportions of the human body and its relationship with nature: the close adherence between man and the world, microcosm and macrocosm. What is better proportioned than the elegant athletes that will skate in Milan’s Assago Forum?
The second key element will be the snowflake, a symbol of nature’s ingenuity in creating something that Leonardo considered superior to any human design.
Finally, tonight’s coreography will focus on the flying man, the dream of Leonardo, who dedicated a great deal of his genius and time to the invention of a flying machine.
Milan houses two splendid exhibits of Leonardo’s inventions. A gallery of wooden models of some of his most famous projects is in Museo della Scienza e della Tecnologia, the Science and Tecnology Museum (which is by the way named after Leonardo!).
A truly fascinating exhibition is The World of Leonardo, where real life size flying machines (thoroughly explained by videos and interactive screens) allow to understand the struggle and the successes of Leonardo in trying to turn the dream of flying into reality.
From tonight until the end of the week, we will have the pleasure of watching amazing skaters fly on ice with elegance and harmony. Leonardo would have greatly appreciated.
P.S. Look carefully at the logo of this year’s World Figure Skating Championship: can you spot a knot? Well, that is another decorative motif connected to Leonardo. Follow us on a guided walking tour of Milan and we will tell you more!
March 21, 2018
Italiana: Italy through the Lens of Fashion, 1971-2001
Milan is one of the top international fashion capital, and elegance is everywhere as you walk around the city: in the high-end shops, in the businesswomen dressed in black and graciously wearing high heels, in the quiet courtyards of the historic centre.
If your interest in fashion is half as strong as ours, do not miss a new exhibition recently opened at Palazzo Reale: Italiana: Italy through the Lens of Fashion, 1971-2001.
“Italiana” celebrates the Italian fashion system in 3 key decades that shaped the world of today. The starting point, 1971, is the year that symbolically marks the break with high fashion and the beginning of the period of Italian ready-to-wear: in 1971 fashion designer Walter Albini chose Milan for the first show of his line, and in that same period the women’s liberation movement emerged in Italy.
On the opposite end, 2001 is the year that marks the transition between two centuries, the year of the attacks of 9/11, but also the period when Italian fashion finally became a global phenomenon.
Fashion is a complex, polycentric phenomenon that draws on a whole range of expertise and intelligence, involving such diverse players as designers, industrialists, artists, architects and intellectuals. Industry and art converge into fashion, and in Italiana you will get to know its protagonists. From the industrial production of quality clothing in the 70s to the system centered on the fashion designer that emerged and triumphed over the course of the eighties; from the names and brands that in the nineties shaped a global economy of styles, to the new figure of the creative director.
As the subtitle of the exhibition reads, fashion can be seen as a lens, a key to the understanding of Italy. Fashion reflects the social, political and cultural history of Italy, and “Italiana” will take you on a voyage of discovery of the Italian soul.