The Ladybug’s mystical experience at “Rûh/Soul” exhibit by Maïmouna Guerresi

Queen Hathun (2015)

This time last year, just back from my second trip to Senegal, I attended one of the greatest exhibits I have ever seen in my life. In the intimate frame of the Officine dell’Immagine in Milan, a small exhibit completely turned me upside down. This is the proof that you don’t need a streamline exhibit to feel the art flowing in your veins and to have your soul impacted just watching a photograph: when it’s art it can happen anywhere, even in a small gallery but the artist, yes, the artist must be powerful.

Powerful is indeed the word that I would use to describe the Rûh/Soul exhibit by Maïmouna Guerresi.

Just a handful of her photographs holding on the wall completely floored me.

Yaye Fall (2019)
Red Balance (2018)
What Kind of (2016)

The main reason – I think – is the artist’s representation of women: the women pictured in her photographs represent the force of the African Muslim woman, The Great Mother, as she defines her. They are powerful, anchored to the Earth like a tree, light and soft as a cloud, they are one with Nature. I had fresh memories in my mind of these women, the African women that I met in Senegal. It is not a coincidence that Maïmouna Guerresi has Senegalese origins. But also Italian, and her mixed culture is clearly visible in her art: what a mistake to think that different cultures cannot perfectly mix to reach the supreme beauty!

Another reason that makes this exhibit so powerful is the clear feeling of divine peeking out of her photographs. To me this appears clearly in her photo Yaye Fall (honestly my favorite one), where the human being is the link between the Nature – the roots of the tree from which it elevates – and the highest divinity.

It is very hard for me to describe my feelings in front of Maïmouna Guerresi art. In that exact moment my first answer was silence. I was so overwhelmed by many powerful feelings that the only thing that I could do was just listening to them, feeling them and let them guide me to this almost mystical experience.

How many artists can do that?

PS: I wore a vintage dress found at a Vinokilo event in Milan and handmade jewelry from Afrohemien and Metalica.

Flow (2019)
Swing (2018)

The Ladybug explores the visual archives of the Black Image Corporation (in a very vintage location in Milan)

The Ladybug Chronicles Black Image Corporation (2)

I have been curious of visiting the Osservatorio Prada in the beautiful Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II in Milan for ages, until I found the perfect exhibit to visit there: The Black Image Corporation by Theaster Gates.

It is a very interesting project that shows part of the incredible Johnson Publishing Company archives with many images representing the “image” of the contemporary African American identity. The images come from the monthly magazine Ebony for example or the weekly magazine Jet from the 40s and the 50s: they both gave voice to the black Americans after the World War and promoted black celebrities as well as cultural discussion. In particular the exhibit focused on the work of two black photographers: Moneta Sleet Jr. and Isaac Sutton with particular attention to the creation of the “black female icon”.

The Ladybug Chronicles Black Image Corporation (6)

The Ladybug Chronicles Black Image Corporation (3)

The Ladybug Chronicles Black Image Corporation (4)

Everything is placed on the two floors on top of this beautiful building: the Osservatorio is located above the central octagon, at the level of the glass and iron dome that covers the arcades, realized by Giuseppe Mengoni between 1865 and 1867 that looks so French but is absolutely Milanese. Also the beautiful wooden floors are original from the previous structure bombed during the World War II.

It is a place that deserves a visit especially if you do it on a calm sunny morning like we did with the beautiful light filtered by the dome first and then by the glass façade.

I wore a pair of prince of wales culottes and black turtle neck sweater from Zara with my new pair of AMAZING black laced boots from Ouigal. They are my favorite piece at the moment and actually my third pair of shoes from them! Yes, I am totally addicted but who wouldn’t be? They are just mind-blowing!!

My headwrap is the new Coco wrap from Madame Ilary in black and prince of wales with side tassel while my handmade brass earrings are from Metalica Creazioni. Black leather bag is from Coccinelle.

The Ladybug Chronicles Black Image Corporation (5)

The Ladybug Chronicles Black Image Corporation (1)

The Ladybug Chronicles Black Image Corporation (7)

The Ladybug on love (and ghosting) in Paris

The Ladybug Chronicles Paris (3)

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.

The Ladybug Chronicles Paris (8)

The Ladybug Chronicles Paris (1)

The Ladybug Chronicles Paris (2)

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!

The Ladybug Chronicles Paris (6)

The Ladybug Chronicles Paris (5)

The Ladybug Chronicles Paris (4)

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)

The Ladybug Chronicles Paris (9)

The Ladybug Chronicles Paris (10)

The Ladybug Chronicles Paris (7)

The Ladybug’s chronicle of a fairy tale: Malick Sidibé “Portraits” at Spazio Marras


A couple of weeks ago I lived a real fairy tale for about one hour of my life.

I read about Malick Sidibé exhibit “Portraits” at the Antonio Marras showroom in Milan and I decided that it was the great occasion to visit the space and the photography exhibit at the same time. “Nonostante Marras” is placed in a lovely court full of green (with some yellow and brown as it was end of the Autumn – which made it even more suggestive!) and it is one of the most incredible places I’ve ever seen. I have been loving Antonio Marras’ fashion art since I was a student but this talented man never stops surprising me. Everything in this space was just amazing: the clothes, the accessories (I fell in love with his turbans!), the jewels, the furniture, the books…I just felt like a kid in Disneyland! I couldn’t stop staring at everything and I understood why this modern loft with a retro twist was indeed the perfect location for Malick Sidibé’s photographs.




On a vintage wall about thirty black and white photographs were hanging, near vintage sofas and couches, some of the portraits taken in the 70’s by this incredible Malian artist in his studio in Bamako.

Sidibé died in April this year but he told the story of his people through his amazing art, even if he didn’t like to be called an artist: he was “just” a photographer, he used to say!

The portraits exposed are simple yet very powerful and they all tell a story about these people’s life, relationships, tastes, that you try to guess with your imagination : it’s so incredibly inspiring!

For the day I wore a vintage Rolling Stones tee (from a charity shop in London), Acne Studios jeans, Zara boots and my new favorite long camel coat from Diffusione Tessile.

I added a wax headband from Sine Modus and a vintage tapestry doctor bag from Humana Vintage.





The Ladybug found Paris…in Monza!

The Ladybug Chronicles Doisneau Monza (2)

Although I have been living in Milan for more than four years now, I never visited Monza. It is only 15 minutes by train from Milan but I never had the occasion to go there. Not that I didn’t want to; I was very curious especially because every time it was mentioned the first reaction of people involved in the conversation was: “Ah, Monza…lovely”!

Indeed, lovely! Now I know that it is the perfect way to describe it!

When I heard that I could have a second occasion to visit the Robert Doisneau exhibit (“Le merveilleux Quotidien”) in Monza – I missed the first one in Milan years ago – I thought it was also the perfect excuse to have a short visit of the town.

I invited a friend of mine to join me and we spent a beautiful Saturday in Monza, visiting the exhibit and doing a little bit of sightseeing!

The Ladybug Chronicles Doisneau Monza (1)

The Ladybug Chronicles Doisneau Monza (3)

The Ladybug Chronicles Doisneau Monza (4)

Doisneau’s exhibition was just wonderful: I didn’t know that much about his photography, except for the famous “Le baiser de l’Hôtel de Ville” and I was amazed to discover his art, especially the beautiful street photos of Paris. Eighty photographs were exposed from his early works until the 70’s, describing the life of his adored Paris. Moments of simplicity and authenticity portrayed in his photographs can lead to pure emotion to those who admire them.

The exhibit was held in the historical Arengario di Monza, in the city center, a few steps away from the beautiful Cathedral (currently under restoration). You don’t easily get lost in Monza, but walking through the old streets of the city center is such an experience! Beautiful landscapes are everywhere especially if you cross the Lambro river on one of the typical bridges.

The Ladybug Chronicles Doisneau Monza (5)

The Ladybug Chronicles Doisneau Monza (7)

We dedicated our afternoon to the visit of the amazing Royal Villa of Monza with the beautiful gardens and the incredible art exhibitions. Once used as private residence of the Austrian royals, the Villa now hosts events and art exhibitions. The magnificent gardens around the building are not only a fresh shelter during the hot summer days, but also an amazing park to walk, run or just take the sun in the beautiful nature.

If I can suggest a lovely place to eat if you visit Monza I loved the Locanda Bergamotto, a lovely restaurant not far from the city center (a few minute walk) with young and welcoming personnel and where you can taste typical Italian dishes at affordable prices.

I wore Zara printed pants, & Other Stories shirt and Superga sneakers. I paired with Celine sunglasses and Miu Miu bag and Bao London canvas tote (a souvenir from my last trip in London!).

The Ladybug Chronicles Doisneau Monza (6)

The Ladybug is feeling so “Goude”

The Ladybug Chronicles Jean Paul Goude (1)

One of the best exhibits that I have visited in the past few years: this is how I can define the “So Far So Goude” exhibit at the PAC in Milan. Really amazing work from the curator (the installation made it even better) and from this talented artist that I didn’t know really well but that I appreciated during these hours spent at the PAC.

Over 230 photographs illustrated the world of Jean-Paul Goude, graphic artist, designer, photographer and film director, a man who deeply influenced our iconographic imagination in the recent decades. Most of the pictures exposed are part of our cultural background, we all know them but maybe not many people know that they all come from the same hand and eye.

The Ladybug Chronicles Jean Paul Goude (4)

The Ladybug Chronicles Jean Paul Goude (5)

The Ladybug Chronicles Jean Paul Goude (7)

The Ladybug Chronicles Jean Paul Goude (8)

I didn’t even know he was the man behind Grace Jones best photographs and videos (he was also her husband) or behind the amazing Naomi Campbell photographs that I’ve been loving for ages.

What I loved about his work was the joy and playfulness, the colours and life. He approached nudity and sex with such a playful eye that there’s never vulgarity in his art…it’s just plain straightforward sparkling life!

I think that the best thing that I can do is trying to show you some of my favourite photographs and drawings (believe me it was hard to pick only a few) . Drawings are an important part of the exhibit and they often represent the starting point for photographs and videos.

For the exhibit I wore Imperial dress and Tosca Blu ankle boots.

The Ladybug Chronicles Jean Paul Goude (3)

The Ladybug Chronicles Jean Paul Goude (2)

The Ladybug Chronicles Jean Paul Goude (9)

The Ladybug Chronicles Jean Paul Goude (6)

The Ladybug Chronicles Jean Paul Goude (11)

The Ladybug Chronicles Jean Paul Goude (10)


The Ladybug and her journey through the heart of Italy

The Ladybug Chronicles Cartier Bresson E gli Altri (8)

Italy seen through the eyes of the most famous international photographers in the last 80 years: this is the main theme of the exhibition “Henri Cartier Bresson & gli altri” that ended last February at The Palazzo della Ragione in Milan. The exhibit presented more than 200 photographs, starting from Henri Cartier Bresson and his long trip to Italy, to Robert Capa – in Italy during the Second World War -, to Salgado and the last Sicilian tuna fishermen, to Helmut Newton and his night pictures of Rome.

The Ladybug Chronicles Cartier Bresson E gli Altri (1)

The Ladybug Chronicles Cartier Bresson E gli Altri (3)

The Ladybug Chronicles Cartier Bresson E gli Altri (4)

The Ladybug Chronicles Cartier Bresson E gli Altri (2)

But also Milan, Palermo, Venice through the eyes of Herbert List, Steve McCurry, Paul Strand and many others…a wonderful exhibit that I visited quite by mistake because I wasn’t in the mood to go back home after work and decided to head to the city center and to join my friend who wanted to visit it.

The medieval Palazzo della Ragione makes a wonderful frame for this beautiful exhibition as well as the beautiful Loggia dei Mercanti just outside in the amazing Piazza dei Mercanti.

I wore navy coat from Max&Co (I got this beautiful coat during the last winter sales!), Zara navy culottes, striped shirt and animal print booties, Miu Miu handbag.

The Ladybug Chronicles Cartier Bresson E gli Altri (7)

The Ladybug Chronicles Cartier Bresson E gli Altri (5)

The Ladybug Chronicles Cartier Bresson E gli Altri (6)

The Ladybug Chronicles Cartier Bresson E gli Altri (9)

The Ladybug is a city explorer at photographer Basilico exhibit in Milan

The Ladybug Chronicles Basilico Pavilion (5)

You probably wonder why I am regularly posting about art and photography exhibits in Milan recently; well, my answer is that since the end of last year Milan is full of amazing events and they are all worth a visit. January was the month of two great photography events: Vivian Maier exhibit (you can read my post here) and Gabriele Basilico exhibition at UniCredit Pavilion.

It was my first Basilico exhibit: I knew his work but I never manage to see many of his photographs together and I enjoyed this special exhibition dedicated to one of the most interesting Basilico’s subjects, the urban nature and the city movement and change (the name of the collection is “City, I listen to your heart”). 150 photographs talking of cities: Moscow, Paris, Berlin, Istanbul, Madrid, Shanghai, Naples, Madrid, Rio de Janeiro, San Francisco, Beirut….all these cities are pictured in a new and intense way through the beauty of their building and architecture or through the uniqueness of a street view. It is not only about monuments, it is more about spontaneous beauty that can blossom everywhere.

The Ladybug Chronicles Basilico Pavilion (1)

The Ladybug Chronicles Basilico Pavilion (7)The Ladybug Chronicles Basilico Pavilion (2)


And then Milan: a specific area of the exhibit is dedicated to Milan, the town where Basilico was born and lived until his death. The itinerary starts with the 40 photographs of the collection “Milano. Portraits of Factories” taken between 1978 and 1980 one of the most interesting and well known works of the photographer. They visually and ideally lead to the last Basilico work, specially dedicated to one of the biggest recent changes happening in Milan, in the same area where the exhibit was held, Porta Nuova area.

In particular Basilico documented all the phases of the change involving the area from the building site to the last night view of the UniCredit Towers and Piazza Gae Aulenti representing also the closing of this very interesting exhibit. The UniCredit Pavilion was also the perfect venue for this exhibition, not only for the geographic location, but also for the incredible use of space and lightening.

For the exhibit I wore a retro inspired outfit made by modern (and cheap!) pieces: Zara grey palazzo pants and H&M mustard shirt paired with Miu Miu bag and Fratelli Rossetti platform lace-up boots.

The Ladybug Chronicles Basilico Pavilion (3)

The Ladybug Chronicles Basilico Pavilion (6)

The Ladybug Chronicles Basilico Pavilion (4)

The Ladybug Chronicles Basilico Pavilion (8)

The Ladybug’s personal search for Vivian Maier

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier Milano (5)

Not too long ago I told you about one of my favorite exhibits ever, Vivian Maier’s photographs in Nuoro, Sardinia this past September (see here).

I knew that the exhibit was going to move to Milan soon and I decided to go and see it again before it ended, yesterday. I expected to find the same pieces that I saw in Nuoro but to my big surprise only part of the photographs exposed in Nuoro were in Milan at the Galleria Forma Meravigli (and for the double of the ticket price!), taken from the 50’s to the 70’s by this mysterious nanny-photographer who reached a huge success only after her death (in 2009), when her rolls where accidentally found during an auction. The exhibit structure and presentation was honestly less attractive than in Nuoro (I missed the yellow walls!) and maybe the small space and the crowd didn’t allow me to visit as peacefully as I did in Sardinia (where I was almost alone!).

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier Milano (3)

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier Milano (4)

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier Milano (1)

It was still a pleasure getting lost into this woman’s world that feels so familiar yet so full of mystery.

I am still non completely convinced about the reconstruction of her story made by John Maloof (the one who found the rolls and gave Vivian Maier an incredible success with his documentary on her life and a traveling exhibit around the world) as I still can’t believe how great she was being a simple amateur photographer. I keep being convinced that she was a real photographer and that she knew more about her art than what they want us to believe. At every picture of her I keep finding the proofs of my theory…but I guess it will keep being a theory!

For this freezing cold day in Milan I wore Diffusione Tessile coat, Whistles hat, Liu-Jo ankle boots and Miu Miu handbag. Brooch is handmade from Lora Nikolova, scarf is thrifted from Oxfam charity shop in London.

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier Milano (6)

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier Milano (2)

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier Milano (7)

The Ladybug discovers Vivian Maier’s world in Sardinia

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier (3)

About two years ago I watched one of the most fascinating documentaries on photography I have ever seen: Finding Vivian Maier. It was the incredible story of an American nanny with the passion for street photography whose magnificent photographs were found by chance longtime after her death, revealing to the world the incredible talent of this woman.

Many people believe that Vivian Maier was not just an amateur photographer but wherever the truth is, it is impossible not to be captivated by her incredible portraits shot mainly in the streets of New York and Chicago starting from the 1950s and for over fifty years, but also in France and other places she traveled to, and the huge amounts of self-portraits.

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier (4)

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier (5)

Her work passed totally under silence although she left an archive of more than 150,000 negatives, plus footage, recordings, notes and different kinds of papers. All these the materials were confiscated in 2007 due to unpaid rent and then discovered by the young John Maloof at an auction in Chicago.

Since then her work reached a large amount of people, touching their souls with her amazing photographs and her love for weird situations. When I saw the documentary, more than her unusual history and eccentric nature, I fell in love with the irony and weirdness of her pictures and I felt a little envious of those in the States who could see her work for real as John Maloof decided to let her work be known all over the country.

But Vivian Maier’s work arrived to Europe, more specifically to Italy and this last September I finally had the chance to see her exhibit in Nuoro at the MAN Museum. It was an incredible experience and I didn’t mind leaving the seaside for a couple of hours and driving to Nuoro to see the first Vivian Maier exhibit in Italy (it was also the occasion, on the way back, to go to the beach to the famous and breathtaking Arbatax red rocks).

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier (6)

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier (2)

The collection shown at the MAN is made of 120 photographs among the most important in John Maloof’s archive (both street portraits and self-portraits) , shot between the early years of the 50’s and the end of the 60’s, a series of Super 8 films and a selection of color photographs taken from the middle of the 60s.

I was so happy that I could visit this intense and exciting exhibit even if I found out that in November it will leave Nuoro (last day is the 18th of October) after a great success in terms of visitors and interest from all over Italy, to reach Milan, more specifically the Fondazione Forma per la Fotografia, from the 19th of November to the 31st of January 2016.

For my visit I wore a Cos white tee, Please coral pants, New Balance sneakers and a beautiful handmade headband from Madame Ilary (it was an old shirt from Zara in its past life!).

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier (7)

The Ladybug Chronicles Vivian Maier (1)