Showing posts with label Italy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Italy. Show all posts

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Soccer Travel, Italian Style

From the online magazine Quartz, just love these shots. Better rendition on http://www.twitter.com/defotis


Sunday, July 14, 2013

Summertime, The Movie

The luscious hues of Venice are a backdrop for the very modern romance between Italian actor Rossano Brazzi and Katherine Hepburn in the charming 1955 color film "Summertime."
She is smitten after she meets him in his shop, which is what she's filming in the first clip below. Her adorable little guide Mauro looks on. The fashions, the scenes, the story -- all very delicious.
Brazzi later starred opposite Mitzi Gayner in the 1958 film "South Pacific." It's set in a tropical oceanside military camp. Clips here of Brazzi as he lip-syncs "Some Enchanted Evening."

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Gino Macropodio & the Dead Lagoon

That Italian-Greek name is the needle that sews together a great read in this week's New Yorker.
While not stellar writing, there are some hysterical anecdotes that only an American son of privilege could acquire in the ratty waters of Venice.

Highlights:
• "Inmates were dangerously crazy women, not just moody ones."
• Rats, gun-runners ..."fighting certain taxi drivers for the city's cocaine trade .. "
• "Baby Fragola came in fast, blasting techno, holding the collar ..."
• "From the stomach, not the balls!"
• Macropodio "once rowed three miles across the lagoon with six friends to drink 40 bottles of wine. And then rowed back." (Fact checkers missed the math on this!)

Read "Open Water," the tale of "Kekquakea," by Sean Wilsey. Page 40 of the April 22 New Yorker.
More on the Venice pollution and water problems in this BBC article on a temporary Grand Canal boat ban.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Lacroix & Empress Theodora

Theodora blesses Lacroix. Credit: Elle Decor 10/2011
Designer Christian Lacroix has been enamored with Byzantine mosaics since his childhood. That would seem obscure for someone from Arles, France, except that his great grandparents dug up Greco-Roman tiles under their house there, according to an article in October's Elle Decor.

The famous mosaics of Empress Theodora & Emperor Justinian are among the richly-colored artworks in Ravenna, Italy where Lacroix not so coincidentally has partnered with a company to produce a new furniture line.

I love Lacroix's now-discontinued Follement china pattern for Christofle - especially since I fell in love with it when the euro traded at 85 cents to the dollar. Not sure I'd want the Theodora Chair.
Theodora mosaic, Church of San Vitale, Ravenna, Italy




But Theodora's character certainly would bring good vibes to a house. The article says she was "the daughter of a bear trainer ... renowned for her beauty and wit, as well as her expertise as a courtesan, and reportedly suppressed revolts, exposed political corruption, and expanded women's rights in her day."

The name Theodora means "God's gift" in Greek. The empress is recognized as a saint and is remembered on November 14. The church in Italy where she's depicted in mosaic was completed a year before her death -- and having seen it in person, I can vouch for how vivid the tiles remain - minerals baked into glass last.
Justinian and Theodora ruled from Constantinople, now Istanbul, Turkey. All this is one more reminder of how interconnected ethnic worlds were in the era of empires.