The Ladybug and the Brazilian experience at PAC Milan

The Ladybug Chronicles PAC Brazil (8)

Before leaving for my summer holidays I visited a last exhibit in Milan: Brazil. Knife in the Flesh at PAC in Milan. At my biggest surprise it was a great exhibit and I enjoyed it a lot, especially the live performance by Maurício Ianês that I found emotional at the point that I couldn’t stop thinking of his work for the following days.

I don’t go often to PAC exhibits but when I do they turn out as great events: I think about the one on CUBA or on Nelson Mandela, two of my favorites ever! This one on Brazil was not less. The name of the exhibit (Navalha na Carne) is the title of a play by the Brazilian writer Plínio Marcos, particularly active during the years of the Brazilian military regime. Not a surprise then that the exhibition is based on this never-ending conflict inside the Brazilian society; it is expressed through installations, photographs, videos and performances of the artists invited and it is often interpreted with hope for the future or with complete disillusion and disappointment.

Anyway, the Brazilian cultural environment is still alive and prosperous and it represents a sort of revolutionary act in front of this perennial conflict.

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I was lucky enough to visit the expo in July, during the live performance of  Maurício Ianês, in front of whom I spent a lot of time, sitting on the floor and trying to connect with the artist and with his incredible powerful message. He arrived at the exhibit beginning of July completely naked (like he did 10 years ago at the San Paolo Biennale) waiting for the visitors to offer him food, clothes, drinks or whatever they want to offer. Since then he has been living in the Museum for two weeks exposing what he received during his performance (that he calls “action”) Untitled (Dispossession).

For the event I wore different shades of blue: from the electric blue of the thrifted Topshop silk shirt, to the teal of Zara culottes, to the aqua of Madame Ilary handmade turban. I added a vintage 80s flamingo brooch from La Vespa Roja in Valencia and mud caged boots from Jeffrey Campbell.

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The Ladybug has new visions, inspirations and a special view of Milan

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Since the opening of the new “White Tower” – as we call it! – at the Fondazione Prada in Milan I’ve been trying to organize a visit with some friends, but due to the difficult timetable for us it took a while before we finally managed, less than a month ago!

Although I was not extremely impressed by the permanent exhibitions (most of them I have seen already during previous visits at the Fondazione, some floors I really didn’t like and I still prefer the permanent exhibits of the Golden Tower), I was totally amazed by the architecture and the view from this new building.

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The visit starts with a beautiful lift ride (in a huge pink lift with an incredible view of Milan) until the last floor of the Tower: from there you can walk all the way down passing by different exhibitions at each floor (including the beautiful Torre Restaurant). Some floors are worth the visit and I enjoyed a few artists and the huge windows from which you can really “feel” and not only see this ever changing town.

After the visit we couldn’t help having a walk in the internal open spaces of the Fondazione and an aperitivo in our favorite  Bar Luce designed by Wes Anderson.

I wore Heka Couture purple shantung culottes, with & Other Stories tee and sabots and Fulani earrings by Africaialha. 

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The Ladybug on love (and ghosting) in Paris

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It is easy to talk about love after a fabulous weekend in Paris: usually when we think of Paris we imagine romantic dinners and walks under the Eiffel Tower, French kisses and romance like in a fairytale.

It was almost my case as my weekend in Paris was full of love…at least that’s what I thought!

Love was the reason why I flew to Paris in February: love for Malick Sidibé art and photography. I read that the Cartier Foundation dedicated an exhibit to this amazing Malian artist who passed away in 2016 and I wanted to see it so badly. Love was also the guy who said: why don’t we go and spend a weekend there so that we can visit the exhibit and have a nice trip together? I couldn’t be happier than that.

The weekend was indeed full of love and warmth (except for the weather as, even if the sky was blue and the sun was out, it was probably one of the coldest weekends in Paris in the last 20 years, at least this is what Parisians told us). A Sicilian is never at ease in the cold but Paris is too beautiful for not enjoying it fully.

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Indeed we started our weekend from the Malick Sidibé’s exhibit: not only a collection of his amazing black and white African portraits but more a celebration of his art and his career that we enjoyed in the middle of black and white pictures, pastel walls and African music. I was amazed and so happy that I couldn’t believe that all these things were really happening: my favorite artist, my favorite town and my favorite man in the world all together!

Speaking of favorite people, after the excitement of photography we moved towards another type of excitement: fashion! Direction: the Yves Saint Laurent Museum. It is a small museum but it contains many of the iconic YSL pieces (like the Mondrian dress!), videos and photographs and it is possible to visit his atelier and studio where he created his pieces of art. Again it was such an experience!

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We spent the evening in the Quartier Latin, eating and drinking in lovely brasseries and cafés, enjoying the little street of Paris and eating Senegalese food (at the Senegalese restaurant La Pointe des Almadies) with my University room-mate and her family living in Paris.

The second day was dedicated to Montmartre, where we were staying: starting from the Sacré Coeur, getting lost in the beautiful streets with a little hint of vintage (I couldn’t help visiting my favorite shop in Paris, Chez Poupoule in Montmartre, even if I had to settle for some windows watching and a picture as it was closed).

It is hard for me now to go through these pictures and memories because many of them has faded away. My love (or at least what I thought he was) went missing since a few weeks after this trip and I experienced for the first time in my life what ghosting means and that it really exists (I thought that men disappearing when everything was going extremely well was just an urban legend…well it’s not!). Was it too good to be true? Are men really scared when things are getting too well? I don’t know, but as long as I define myself a strong woman with a luminous inside light I decided to overcome my fears and sadness by writing this post, going through these memories. Maybe it will help to let my light guide me towards my true other luminous soul.

(Coat vintage Valentino; turban and culottes Madame Ilary; Shoes Marella; Beret, bag and earrings vintage; Striped jumper Zara)

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The Ladybug, a black wall, a white door and Kandiskij’s Russian inspiration

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Last weekend I was hanging around with a friend of mine: we had a lovely lunch in one of my favorite places in Milan, the restaurant Orto,  we had a long chat in their lovely garden (it’s not properly a garden but you are surrounded by plants and it feels like a garden!) and the weather was so good that we took a long walk after lunch.

We walked to the Mudec museum and we decided to step in to see the Kandinskij exhibit even if both of us had already seen the beautiful exhibit dedicated to the artist four years at Palazzo Reale. Maybe it was the fact that we adored that past exhibit but we didn’t enjoy the visit very much.

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The exhibit was dedicated to the story of its so-called “genius period”, leading to the birth of abstraction. Most of the works come from Russian museums such as the Hermitage and “they trace the development of Kandinskij’s visual imagery, deeply rooted in Russian tradition, and of his inescapable path towards abstraction”. It is also a journey across the Russian visual sources from which he took most of his inspiration.

The thing is that the exhibit is quite small with few interesting pieces from the artist, not even comparable with the one held in Palazzo Reale in 2013.

Anyway, it was also a good day to take some pictures so here they are!

Even if the weather was good it was still a bit chilly, that’s why I wore my flowery Barbour (a limited edition that I found in an outlet years ago!) on my Victorian style frill shirt from Alexa Chung’s Archive second collection for M&S. I added black skinny jeans from Acne Studios and comfy shoes for the long walk (Nike white sneakers at & Other Stories).

Last touches: Sine Modus headband, Cavalli & Nastri 70’s vintage bag and vintage silver earrings!

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The Ladybug About Keith Haring Art

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When I saw the advert of the upcoming Keith Haring exhibit in Milan I couldn’t help thinking of my last (and first) Keith Haring exhibit. I was in New York in 2012 and I was staying in Brooklyn in a B&B. I found there the flyer of Keith Haring exhibition at Brooklyn Museum and I felt so happy and grateful to have the chance to see his art for the first time in New York! I enjoyed that exhibit so much that I could never forget it! It’s definitely in “my best memories ever” archive!

The good feelings came to my mind immediately and I wasn’t sure if going or not as I didn’t want to ruin my Brooklyn memories. I decided to have a look anyway and it was a great decision! The exhibit that I saw in 2012 was more focused on Keith Haring adverts and drawings in New York subway stations and even if I found a few here in Milan the exhibit was basically different.

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The Ladybug Chronicles Keith Haring (1)

110 of Keith Haring works were exposed, from public and private collections from all over the world. Some of them were shown in Italy for the very first time. The exhibition tries to create a link between Keith Haring works and their source of inspiration: from classical art to pre-Columbian art, from American Indian and Pacific masks to his favorite artists, such as Pollock and Klee.

His colorful pieces are a joy for the eye but very often pain and frustration for the world lie behind them. I have always loved his art and I was happy to discover that some of my favorite pieces of him were exposed there.

The exhibit will be in Milan at Palazzo Reale until 18th of June 2017, so don’t miss your chance to discover (or re-discover, as it was my case!) this incredibly talented artist-activist. 

For the exhibit I wore ASOS black dungaree, Topshop palm shirt and an almost vintage leather jacket! I paired with Madame Cosette velvet ankle boots and Michael Kors Bucket bag.

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The Ladybug enters the enchanted world of Antonio Marras (Nulla Dies Sine Linea)

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I started 2017 with great “firsts”: the first movie of the year (Collateral Beauty), the first book of the year (Rodolfo Walsh stories), the first shopping of the year (a beautiful and warm jacket for half of its price). So was my first exhibit of the year: Antonio Marras’ Nulla Dies Sine Linea at the Triennale in Milan.

I visited the exhibit at the beginning of January, on a cold Saturday afternoon and I loved it since I came in, passing through a series of hanged white shirts and black jackets with attached bells  as so wanted the artist.

The artist is Antonio Marras, one of my favorite designers ever, whose fashion showroom and artistic space (Spazio Marras) is one of my favorite corners in Milan (I visited it recently for the wonderful Malick Sidibé photography exhibition). I have always loved his fashion and I have always considered him as one of the most innovative and creative talents in Italy. I have been following him since he was an “emerging designer” because I was stunned by his fashion art and I have been loving him since then.

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I wasn’t surprised to find out that he was also an incredible artist. Nulla Dies sine Linea is a tribute to his life and career but also to the artist more than the designer. Fashion is everywhere but the exhibit is a totalizing journey into his world. From paintings to sculptures and installations, the atmosphere is relaxed, the lights are soft, the music delicately brings the visitor inside Marras’ world. There is no filter and the personal reaction is crucial. There is life and death, light and mystery, sex and fashion. Old doors and furniture often surround the installations and when you cross them you have the incredible feeling of entering something private, enveloping and fascinating, involving all of your senses.

I adored this touching journey and I fell in love with Antonio Marras even more as I discovered a lot more about his art and I was captivated by its amazingness.

I wore a Blauer green parka, Acne Studios black skinny jeans and Replay biker boots.

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The Ladybug’s big dream: Basquiat exhibit in Milan

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Six years ago one of the biggest European exhibits on Jean-Michel Basquiat opened in Paris, at the Museum of Modern Art. I was seriously thinking of getting a ticket to Paris just to see it but although my huge love and admiration for this incredible American artist, I never managed to see his art live. The first time that I saw a few of his paintings I was at Miart in Milan in 2013 but that’s nothing compared to the huge exhibit started at Mudec Museum this October and showing more than 100 works (from private collections) of the short but intense career of this amazing artist who died in 1988 at 27.

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He has been defined a writer, a graffiti artist, the symbol of the new African diaspora and a son of the African slavery but what I have always loved of Jean-Michel Basquiat powerful art is the way he put together his African roots and the energy of NYC suburbs. These two sides of his art are a huge part of this beautiful exhibit that will be in Milan until the end of February 2017 and I am thinking of going back to see it again before it ends.

The exhibit also shows his art as a bridge between different cultures and it is probably one of the biggest occasions to see Basquiat’s art in Europe or at least in Italy and I must say that it is absolutely worth the visit.

For the exhibit I wore a beige Please sweater, Topshop boyfriend jeans and Max&Co navy coat. I also wore my new clogs from Archivio Vintage and my new Bonne Maison colored socks with my Cavalli e Nastri vintage 70’s handbag.

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The Ladybug is…at “David Bowie is”

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When I first read about the “David Bowie is” exhibit at the V&A Museum in London I immediately thought that it was the perfect excuse for a trip to one my favorite cities! I was ready to buy a flight ticket just to see the exhibit; it only happened once before, when I was ready to fly to Paris to see Basquiat exhibition a few years before. In both cases the exhibits somehow came to me. Basquiat is still exposing at Mudec in Milan (I will share my visit soon here!) and “David Bowie is” was in Bologna until mid-November.

I took the occasion of my friends spending two days in Bologna also to see the exhibit during the All Saint’s bank holiday to join them. The first day we arrived at the Mambo museum without buying the tickets online and the queue was so long (more than three hours) that we decided to buy the tickets online for the day after. I couldn’t believe the long wait but when the day after we finally managed to see the exhibit I suddenly understood why so many people wanted to see it.

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I have always loved David Bowies since I was a kid. I was not a huge fan but I have always admired his persona and his music, his way of changing and surprising, his art and flair. I consider him one of my favorite vintage icons. All of this things I love him for where at the exhibition

“David Bowie is” is a huge comprehensive journey into David Bowie’s career: “over 300 objects including handwritten lyrics, original costumes, photography, set designs, album artwork and rare performance material from the past five decades are brought together from the David Bowie Archive for the very first time. The exhibition demonstrates how Bowie’s work has both influenced and been influenced by wider movements in art, design, theatre and contemporary culture and focusses on his creative processes, shifting style and collaborative work with diverse designers in the fields of fashion, sound, graphics, theatre and film” (www.davidbowieis.it).

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But it is not only about the content of the exhibit, it is also (or in particular) the way it is presented to the visitor: multi-media art is everywhere, animations and video installations makes you feel like a part of the art.

I can definitely say that it was one of the best exhibitions I have ever seen: I didn’t even want to leave the last room when I realized that the journey was over!

I wore my adored Twenty8Twelve military jacket with a vintage grey leather pencil skirt (a bargain from Humana Vintage in Milan!) and my Frida tee by Vanna Vinci with Michael Kors bucket bag.

I couldn’t take any pictures inside then the only pictures from the exhibit are taken from Google.

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The Ladybug’s ode to Cuba

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Before going on holiday I had the chance to visit one of the most interesting exhibits in Milan right now “Cuba. Tatuare la storia” (Cuba. Tattooing History) at the PAC (Padiglione d’Arte Contemporanea).

From the 6th of July and to the 12th of September the PAC is the perfect venue to visit if you want to discover an amazing exhibit completely dedicated to the art of this amazing country that I had the chance to visit in 1996.

This is more than just an exhibit: there are videos, paintings, installations and live performances by the artists who better represent the contemporary Cuban art from the 70’s to the present.

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Each artist represents a part of “the journey towards Cuba, with its magnificence and its difficulties, its sound and furore, its cultural, linguistic and mythical issues, its ideological differences. Starting from the historical performative nature of contemporary Cuban art, the exhibition will present a large selection of works and installations — some of them conceived for the PAC — of the most representative Cuban artists and the most up-and-coming artists of the new generation” (excerpt from the exhibit page on the PAC Internet site).

There is a certain sadness and bitterness all around but it is part of this wonderful island and I totally saw it represented there. But there was also joy, hope, especially when we realised than we could take with us part of an art piece (I won’t tell you more about it!).

If you are in Milan during this summer holidays it is a great art experience to enjoy more than a simple art exhibit, one of these not-to-miss events! Just one last tip: check the PAC site before planning your visit to know if there are live performance scheduled (www.pacmilano.it).

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The Ladybug finds relief in Escher’s geometries

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Milan is too hot to do anything these days. It is hard to go out running or walking and when I cannot reach the beach I need to find a way to reduce my pain caused by the awful heat.

The only way to do it is finding a nice place with air conditioning, like a museum! Thanks God there’s always a good exhibition to visit (there are a few actually!) then I called my friend to reach me for what became more than a simple visit, but a real interactive experience: the Escher exhibit at Palazzo Reale.

I have always loved this artist, especially how his art was involved in fashion and music industry (one of my favorite pieces ever is the so-called Escher dress by British designer Matthew Williamson for example!) but it was the first time that I visited an exhibit dedicated to his work.

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More than 200 works were exposed in six different sections going from his roots to his love for Italy (especially Southern Italy!) and the discovery of geometric art in Spain. What I love more about his art is that it challenges the viewer and his ability to “read” his work, to find new images in images, to discover new paths from the visible paths. A large part of the exhibit was also dedicated to his huge influence on comics, advertising, music and films during the 20th century…but I couldn’t see the Matthew Williamson dress!

You can visit the exhibit until the 22nd of January 2017.

I wore Topshop mom jeans, Please golden tee, Zara laced shoes and vintage 70’s bag from Foxy Brown Vintage. I added my new handmade turban from Heka Couture and handmade silver Nepalese double necklace. ..I was totally in my “Princess of Persia mood”!

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