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Unique pieces of an artist’s vision

Flavio Favelli is one of the top names on the Italian contemporary art scene today thanks to his works which rework objects that are part of our history.

Starting with the legendary Fabbri Amarena jar… 

Unique pieces of an artist’s vision

He will one of the artists representing Italy at the Italian Pavilion during the 2013 Biennale in Venice, where he will present a work connected to his artistic career which has focused on objects with a historical flavor. His aesthetic research has often led him to seek inspiration for his works in the world of Fabbri Amarena.  The most recent occasion was during Arte Fiera, the contemporary art fair which takes place in Bologna every year, where Favelli displayed his work (see photo), which began, like all his other creations, in his workshop in Savigno, in the countryside of the Emilia region, in a place that is packed full of vintage clothes, antique English china and, of course, Fabbri Amarena jars, of which he currently owns at least fifty models. 

How did his love of Fabbri Amarena first begin?

It’s a complex issue which dates back to my childhood, and in particular my grandparents’ house, where I grew up surrounded by Fabbri Amarena jars, first designed by the famous potters from the Gatti workshop in Faenza, who were inspired by Chinese patterns. A love of Amarena went hand in hand with my grandfather’s fascination with everything exotic.

What do you mean?

My grandfather was really attracted by these distant lands, with a bit of a colonial flavor. And that’s why the white and blue, Chinese-inspired design of the Fabbri Amarena jar was such a brilliant idea, and the company was one of the first in the world to construct a marketing campaign around its packaging, with specific research regarding the design. 

How does this all connect to your work as an artist?

I like finding inspiration in traditional objects, or at least in this case, in these hand-crafted jars, which are all different to each other. For my work, I go around and try to get hold of new examples. The work that I presented at Arte Fiera was just the latest one to be inspired by Fabbri. At the Maxxi Gallery in Rome, for example, there’s a big installation built with white and blue Fabbri Amarena jars.  And of course, I also took part in the Fabbri Art Prize in 2009, with a yellow barrel that I decorated with the famous white and blue floral pattern.