alessandro gherardi

IO DONNA SCHEMA LIBERO – MILANO IN GRANDE STILE

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Triumphant Milan. “This book is not only an itinerary through some of the most beautiful entryways of Milan’s buildings, but also an emotional journey where the sense of chic lies in the balance between color and minimalist splendor”. This is the beginning of the book Entryways of Milan (Taschen), edited by the german art director Karl Kolbitz, with a writing of the fashion designer Stefano Pilati, that in his collections for Yves Saint Laurent and Zegna has always proved that he knows how to conciliate with balance colors and shapes. The entryways photographed, no less than 144, have been built from the 30s to the end of the 60s in areas that until 20 years ago where considered adjacent to the historical centre but not central. Now that Milan is one of the most interesting cities in Europe again, the suburbs are an integral part of a metropolis that lives of tourism, thanks also to art and design. Talking of fashion: today brands look for a futuristic placement, releasing from past references, apart from some intrusions in the 70s and 80s. And the 30s.

IO DONNA SCHEMA LIBERO – GESSATO D’AUTORE

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Signature Pinstripe. Alfred Hitchcok filmed Suspicion in 1941, almost half a century before the invention of the technologies that today allow to create the glorified special effects. There’s a very famous scene, full of suspense, with Cary Grant bringing a glass of milk up the stairs to his wife – interpreted by Joan Fontaine. I leave in doubt who hasn’t watched the movie: the milk could be poisoned. And that glass, declared the filmmaker to Francois Truffaut in a book-interview, had the role of “illuminating the scene”; to obtain the effect he wanted, he used a very simple but effective trick: the glass contained a light bulb. The other stage lighting and the setting create a very fascinating play of geometries and symmetries: the stairs, the paintings, the column, the stripes and the lapels of Grant’s suit, the skylight’s structure that projects a cage-shaped shadow on the wall. An unmissable classic of one of the most famous and less appreciated by americans (at that time) angloamerican directors.

IO DONNA SCHEMA LIBERO – SOTTOSOPRA

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Upside Down. I fell in love with the artworks of Andrea Collesano 7 years ago: they were exhibited in the Art Gallery of Barbara Paci in Pietrasanta. It was love at first sight because when I was a child I was obsessed by whales and sea bottoms; i used to draw many, many of them… however, I wouldn’t be able to become an Artist! Collesano, instead, is an Artist. He’s still very young, he lives and works in Forte dei Marmi in a house-laboratory with a very wild garden. And with a cat. In spite of his youth, he’s already known internationally. He transfers his imaginary world and its symbolisms in his artworks, made with ink on aged paper. Whales are his passion but he also draws lots of other animals. And palm trees. Palm trees underwater, surrounded by frogs and seahorses, in a surreal, charming and poetic world, with a gentle hand; a world that turns upside down the biological rules of animal and vegetal life. Next step: sculptures. Made of bronze. I went and visit him and I saw them: and I fell in love again.

IO DONNA SCHEMA LIBERO RISVOLTI DI STILE

43-MODA-schema-libero-ok_Storia6Facing the style. “A well-cut suit makes you look thinner, taller and sexier” word of sir Paul Smith, a real expert of menstyle. Menstyle, one word that contains the emanation of what a man would like to be and own. The Style. One Style. One, because it changes depending on the person. But, overall, a Universal Style exists, and it refers indeed to the suit, that can even modify and improve the corporeality better than a plastic surgeon and has the power of adding an appeal that is not possible to reach otherwise. Fashion trends are almost a negligible detail; there’s the year of the narrow lapels, then the year of the peaked lapels, like in the 40s: here the proportions come into play. If you are short, the width of the “peak” worsen the situation, for example. Tricks that men have learnt to consider. I don’t think we still need the columns that teach how to tie a tie. We’re much sharper than in the past. Or not? We are, come on.

 

IO DONNA SCHEMA LIBERO SCELTE EPOCALI

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Epochal choices. Today we talk about the importance and added value of accessories, that dignify (or mortify) the look. Shirts, ties, and then shoes, socks, watches, bags, briefcases, hats. Everything can, if matched in the proper way with the outerwear, make us look a little more special. Today is very easy, due to the extraordinary supply of products. But at the same time it’s easier to make mistakes, exactly because the supply is really wide. The “decades of elegance”, like the 30s or the 40s, had rules about shapes and lenghts, fabrics and collars, and everything else: so it was hard to fail. Today, while enhancing the individual personality, there could be the possibility of provoking confusion (and making a mess of bad matchings). The secret stays in coherence. Dandy, eccentric, conformist, traditionalist, pop, unconventional: everything is permitted, as long as you are focused on the style you decide to adopt. Right, a 1935 adv of Arrow shirts.