Celebrating the Cinematic Heritage of Italian Luxury House Fendi
Captured on celluloid by Luchino Visconti, Martin Scorsese and Wes Anderson, Fendi has collaborated extensively with filmmakers since the early 1970s. Celebrating this cinematic alliance, and coinciding with today’s opening of Fendi’s new boutique in Milan, the exhibition Making Dreams: Fendi and the Cinema will be unveiled this Saturday within the opulent surroundings of the Mario Cavallè-designed Cinema Manzoni. Featuring today’s short Amphitheatre, a visual salute of Rome’s legendary Cinecittà studios, the grand show is curated by the multidisciplinary creative directors, Patrick Kinmonth and Antonio Monfreda. “As a little girl, film screenings were events in their own right,” remembers Director of the Italian luxury fashion house Silvia Venturini Fendi of her personal connection to film. “The cinema would enter our house and the whole event would be met with a religious silence.” In part examining the costuming of several seminal films in which Fendi has played a key role, including James Bond caper Never Say Never Again (1983), Scorsese’s The Age of Innocence (1993) and Luca Guadagnino’s I am Love (2009), the show opens ahead of the restoration of Visconti’s award-winning 1974 release Gruppo di famiglia in un Interno (Conversation Piece) and a book on the film by Rizzoli.
Making Dreams: Fendi and the Cinema runs at the Cinema Manzoni from September 21 through October 6.
Find more information on the exhibition here.
Charlie Ahearn’s New Film Retraces a Moment in New York Style
As a teenage photographer in early 80s East Flatbush, Brooklyn, Jamel Shabazz set out to document the then nascent movement of hip-hop. Through the iconic style of his MCs, neighborhood kids and gang members, the unequivocal attitude of New York’s youth was recognized as the calling card of the city’s creative renaissance. Published in 2001, Shabazz’ first book Back In The Days was celebrated as an exhilarating snapshot of the times, and his visual flair has been brought to life in a new documentary by the legendary hip-hop historian and director, Charlie Ahearn, previewed in today’s exclusive clip. “On the cover of Jamel’s book were two young men on 42nd Street. They were captured posing in such strong form as a kind of respectful bulwark against all the chaos that you see around them on ‘The Deuce,’” explains Ahearn, the notable filmmaker also responsible for the classic old-school movie, Wild Style. “I immediately knew that here was an original artist for our time.” Co-produced by Kenzo Digital and enjoying its world premiere in Brooklyn this weekend before traveling to Portland, Seattle and San Francisco next month, Jamel Shabazz Street Photographer is both a trip down memory lane featuring NYC luminaries Fab Five Freddy and Bobbito Garcia, and a discovery of the inspirations and craft behind the titular influencer's urban lens.
A New Film Pursues the Mystery Behind the Influential Director’s Last Comic Tale
Filmmaker Chelsea McMullan’s emphatic new short documents the surreal myths surrounding Federico Fellini’s infamous unmade film Il Viaggio di G. Mastorna Detto Fernet (The Journey of G. Mastorna called Fernet), the story of a man living unknowingly in the afterlife. The avant-garde director described the project as his life’s curse, and legend has it that a magician once told Fellini that if he made the picture, it would be the last thing he ever did. Premiering at September’s Toronto Film Festival, Deragliamenti (Derailments)––an exclusive edit of which we present above––explores the tribulations surrounding the prospective movie and the La Dolce Vita director’s decision to produce the metaphysical tale as a comic strip with artist Milo Manara instead. “Manara saw himself as a vehicle through which Fellini could rid himself of the negativity,” explains McMullan. “The comic is less a visual adaptation of the film and more Fellini coming to terms with the approach of death.” In an eerie fulfillment of the magician’s prophecy, Il Maestro passed away six months after the publication of its first installment, making the comic strip the final project he ever worked on. We talked to McMullen about the enduring influence of the legendary Italian.
What did you find intriguing about the story of the curse surrounding Il Viaggio?
As filmmakers we use narrative to structure our thoughts and feelings, it gives us control over things we can’t explain. That’s why the curse is so fascinating. It had the ability to stifle Fellini from making the film.
Did you worry about the curse affecting you while making the documentary?
I had a bad accident riding my bike home one night and I remember lying on the pavement thinking that this was an extension of the curse. After that I started to be really paranoid. I think I was just living the story, which in way is a good thing, but it didn’t do much for my mental health.
You interview Manara in the documentary. Did he have any interesting insights into working with Fellini?
We conducted the interview in his studio in Verona. Manara explained he and Fellini would often go for dinner to discuss the project, and inevitably Fellini would start sketching his ideas on a napkin. Eventually Manara pulled out a drawer full of a thick pile of them, soiled with Bolognese, wine and olive oil. On each one was a faded sketch, some quite elaborate, others just faded lines, all hand drawn by Fellini.
Did Fellini see comics as being as important a medium as film?
Fellini considered and approached comics exactly as he did films. Visually, by using stills instead of moving images, Manara’s collaboration with Fellini acts as a bridge between comics and cinema.
What is it that still makes Fellini relevant today?
His films deconstruct every facet of popular culture in a single film: religion, paparazzi and celebrity. Fellini had the unique ability to be incredibly playful and dark at the same time. He placed the audience in a room full of funhouse mirrors and told them to look at themselves.