The ZX Spectrum pixel font never ends to give me satisfaction. I had already used to call the weaving in some work of recent years. Since then I’ve been working to design sardinian traditional tapestries and rugs using typography. I show the last one, dedicated to the great Roberto Petza, chef of the “star” restaurant S’Apposentu, in Siddi .
During the last week of September and the first of October, I was in Marrakech (Morocco) with Roberta Morittu, a celebrate sardinian and international designer involved in studying and designing mediterranean handicrafts since many years, and some of my best students at Cagliari University (Alessandro Congiu, Claudio Rossi and Francesca Savona). Nicolò Ceccarelli, Marco Sironi and Carlo Turri of Sassari/Alghero University were with us with a group of their students and realized some fo the objects together with Cagliari collegues. We had to create also the identity for an exhibit at Dar Bellarj, one of the most charming place inside the Medina. Handicrafts of moroccan tradition were re-designed and interpreted by the students from Cagliari, Sassari/Alghero, Florence and Milan Universities and from Esav, an important local school of design. They made their project working together the moroccan artisans. The University of Sassari/Alghero also realized an amazing video which could be seen here. The Autonomous Region of Sardinia sponsorized the whole mission. We concentrated on the figure of the storks (Dar Bellarj is also known as The Stork Hospital), stylizing them in several patterns composed with figures similar to the pieces of the the moroccan mosaics, using the same colors of the place: sand, red, black, white.
I thought it was a brilliant idea. It was not the same opinion of the Jury. So, I didn’t win the contest for new ideas for Sardinian handicrafts (Samugheo’s carpets). Moreover, I didn’ even enter among the first 15. A real defeat. I want to show here my proposal as well. The goal was to create a “speaking carpet”, putting one qr code (or more different), built following the same modular path of the whole scheme, treating it as a decorative pattern (as I did for the graphic design of the invitation for the International Design Week in Cagliari, in 2011). The qr code links to a website where you can find multi media materials, as how the carpet itself was made, what is its history, and all the informations you want about Sardinia and its culture. I’m very grateful to my wife Debora and to my old friend Andrea Balduzzi for their design suggestions and support.
I have recently designed for Asili&Boassa these two dummies, inspired by Monti Prama’s giants and by the Mother Goddess – ancient statues from the nuraghic era, see below. I named them Nina and Ninu, sardinian nicknames for Antonia and Antonio. You can change the gender of the dummy simply moving upside down his/her head. In this way, we can have a series of four males, four females, three and one, two and two. A suitable system to show new collections of objects and clothes inside the Joias showroom in Tortolì, specialized in Sardinian artistic handicrafts.
Mogoro is a small center in the countryside of Sardinia, well known for its handmade wool carpets, which show coloured and rich decoration. This workshop has been organized by the Architecture Department, University of Cagliari, focusing on landscape and typical architecture. The two capital letters M and L were combined to form a star/flower pattern, wich is one of the strongest symbol of the local textile tradition.
During the recent workshop “Tessere il racconto dei luoghi – Grafica e Tessitura” (Weaving the tales of the places – Graphic design and textures), organized by Associazione Culturale Malik www.associazionemalik.it/ and held in Armungia together with Tommaso Lussu and Barbara Cardia (two modern weavers who rediscovered the ancient art of handloom) we taught a class of ten students to understand the weaving basics and the graphic design methods, trying to wrap the two themes together. We developed some ideas as “the talking carpets”, applying some local identity concepts and figures to find new ways to design without any betrayal of the tradition. For example, we started a new carpet (1) which shows an abstract decoration that is in fact an histogram of Armungia’s population historic series since the Italy’s unification in 1861. Some months ago I saw some videos which transformed music into graphic plots. I went the opposite way, transposing into music one of the traditional subjects of Armungia’s carpets, (2) “su priali” (almost each sardinian village has his own). I put the dots on a Garage Band scheme (3) and presented to the students the sound of a piece of the “identity matrix” of Armungia. Also, I designed some new projects for the traditional Sardinian carpets. Here I show (4) “Nuraghi e frecce” (Nuraghe and obsidian tips, built fitting full and empty spaces on the whole surface), “Emilio Lussu” (Inspired by the figure of the legendary commander and politician from Armungia, Tommaso’s grandfather). A lot of fun.