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Tuesday, February 28, 2006

The Art of The Crime

Over here where I am sitting it's the end of the Carnival season, outside there's hundreds of passers-by swaying homewards, some in pairs, some in groups, and some poor lonely souls as well, and while I find myself contemplating some sweet smiles and curious glances which I've received and exchanged over the last couple of days, let me open my account with a somewhat serene suggestion.

Fabrizio Passerella and Gianluca Costantini are two of the most interesting Italian graphical artists. Both collaborated in the autumn of last year in the project L'Arte del delitto ("The Art of The Crime") . The title is a reference to architect Adolf Loos's modernist claim that "Ornament is crime": Passerella and Costantini in turn tried to vindicate the beauty of decoration and flamboyance. A thoroughly postmodern exercise, of course, but a beautiful one, and the mashup of religious and cultural symbol is probably the most fitting thing to look at, now that the fasting season begins.

I recommend you just let the starting page load, watch the images pass by and let the music soothe you. (The more impatient may click on the "gallery" link which takes you straight to the individual pictures.)

Of the two artists, Costantini seems to be more disposed towards using the Internet as a showcase for his various activities. He has his own website, with a portfolio of illustrations demonstrating his versatility, and a couple of links to other projects he's involved in. I particularly recommend the Political Comics website, with spartanic graphics that somehow remind me of George Grosz, and the InguineMah!Gazine, a webzine about modern comic design: Even if you don't speak Italian, there's lots of stuff to discover if you just click around.