HomeNot a follower, but a creator

Not a follower, but a creator

‚ÄěDo what you love‚Äú is the leit¬≠mo¬≠tif of artist, desi¬≠gner and pho¬≠to¬≠gra¬≠pher, Mar¬≠co Moro¬≠si¬≠ni. A motif that gets to the heart of the sub¬≠ject of this issue, ‚ÄěAFFINITY‚Äú. We meet the indus¬≠tri¬≠al desi¬≠gner, who trai¬≠ned in Urbi¬≠no and Augs¬≠burg, in the Mar¬≠che regi¬≠on at the ‚ÄěCas¬≠tel¬≠lo di Grana¬≠ro¬≠la‚Äú, whe¬≠re in a deca¬≠de of con¬≠sis¬≠tent design, he has suc¬≠cee¬≠ded in ele¬≠vat¬≠ing a his¬≠to¬≠ric site into an artis¬≠tic expe¬≠ri¬≠ence. Guests will find here, on a rural hill just a few kilo¬≠me¬≠ters from the Adria¬≠tic coast, a magi¬≠cal retre¬≠at who¬≠se ambi¬≠ence and atmo¬≠s¬≠phe¬≠re are mar¬≠ked by Morosini‚Äôs signa¬≠tu¬≠re in every litt¬≠le detail. It feels as if you are spen¬≠ding your holi¬≠day in the artist‚Äôs stu¬≠dio and muse¬≠um. Morosini‚Äôs works are cha¬≠rac¬≠te¬≠ri¬≠zed by the power of color and light. They are main¬≠ly pho¬≠to¬≠graphs, drawings, poe¬≠tic wri¬≠tings, objects and sculp¬≠tures that form a mul¬≠ti¬≠fa¬≠ce¬≠ted uni¬≠ver¬≠se in the con¬≠text of the place and beco¬≠me a mani¬≠fes¬≠ta¬≠ti¬≠on of bound¬≠less crea¬≠ti¬≠vi¬≠ty. After years of inter¬≠na¬≠tio¬≠nal acti¬≠vi¬≠ty for major brands and nume¬≠rous pro¬≠jects in the field of design, art and publi¬≠ca¬≠ti¬≠on, Moro¬≠si¬≠ni hims¬≠elf has redu¬≠ced hims¬≠elf to doing only what he loves and is very con¬≠sis¬≠tent in the way he lives. ‚ÄěNever look back,‚Äú he says with con¬≠vic¬≠tion, and would pre¬≠fer to only speak with us about the future. Nevertheless, in a con¬≠ver¬≠sa¬≠ti¬≠on with him, we dis¬≠co¬≠ver some high¬≠lights from his past: Years ago in Miami, he pre¬≠sen¬≠ted the exhi¬≠bi¬≠ti¬≠on and the docu¬≠men¬≠ta¬≠ry film ‚ÄěThe Art of Sel¬≠ling a Bag‚Äú on the occa¬≠si¬≠on of Art Basel, in which he dealt with the rela¬≠ti¬≠ons¬≠hip bet¬≠ween art, design and indus¬≠try. He exhi¬≠bi¬≠ted his works ‚Äěuomi¬≠niuo¬≠mi¬≠ni‚Äú in Los Ange¬≠les and San Fran¬≠cis¬≠co and publis¬≠hed design book volu¬≠mes such as ‚ÄěKOSOVARS Camp Hope‚Äú, ‚ÄěDivi¬≠di¬≠Ri¬≠mi¬≠ni‚Äú and ‚ÄěNo Copy¬≠right‚Äú. Tog¬≠e¬≠ther with his wife Bar¬≠ba¬≠ra, he also foun¬≠ded the popu¬≠lar life¬≠style brand BRANDINA.

HUGO V. ASTNER: Mar¬≠co, this issue deals with the sub¬≠ject of ‚ÄěAffi¬≠ni¬≠ty‚Äú. By this, we mean, in rela¬≠ti¬≠on to art, a kind of con¬≠nec¬≠tion, a natu¬≠ral under¬≠stan¬≠ding of it without being ‚Äětaught‚Äú the art its¬≠elf. Do you also belie¬≠ve that the¬≠re are such things, and what affi¬≠nities does a Mar¬≠co Moro¬≠si¬≠ni have?

MARCO MOROSINI: I belie­ve in affi­nities. They can ori­gi­na­te from dif­fe­rent sources: pla­ces, spaces, peop­le, rela­ti­ons­hips. Two peop­le who crea­te some­thing magi­cal tog­e­ther surely feel an affi­ni­ty for each other and for crea­ting tog­e­ther. The­re are some­ti­mes down­right explo­si­ons of crea­ti­vi­ty in the inter­ac­tion that one would not be capa­ble of indi­vi­du­al­ly. The­re are spaces that evo­ke affi­nities. The­se can be church­es or thea­ters, whe­re what has taken place the­re so far is also pre­ser­ved to a cer­tain extent in the space, giving it a spe­cial atmo­s­phe­re. I was tra­ve­ling inter­na­tio­nal­ly in urban cen­ters, now I live in the coun­try­si­de and am too often alo­ne in the crea­ti­on pro­cess. I am incre­a­singly awa­re of the impor­t­ance of fin­ding peop­le who have simi­lar affi­nities, who you can con­front, and who share the same level of com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on and value exch­an­ges. Too many peop­le also focus on the pure­ly eco­no­mic aspect in the crea­ti­ve field. I, on the other hand, do some­thing becau­se I love it. I would even go so far as to say that I can only do what I like. This is my natu­ral access to affinity.

Whe­re do you see the inter­face bet­ween design and art? Are the­re examp­les in your work that exp­lain such overlaps?

MARCO MOROSINI: Yes, abso¬≠lute¬≠ly! The cross¬≠over bet¬≠ween design and art is at the core of my work. The Bri¬≠tish indus¬≠tri¬≠al desi¬≠gner and archi¬≠tect, Ron Arad, is also a very good examp¬≠le of this. His sculp¬≠tures beca¬≠me objects. For examp¬≠le, when I design fab¬≠rics, the star¬≠ting point is often one of my works of art. Many of my design objects have the poten¬≠ti¬≠al to open up other dimen¬≠si¬≠ons than just tho¬≠se of ever¬≠y¬≠day use. The¬≠re are chairs that I have desi¬≠gned on which you can sit com¬≠for¬≠ta¬≠b¬≠ly, but who¬≠se shape also gets you thin¬≠king. That‚Äôs what I‚Äôm tal¬≠king about.

Did your par¬≠ents encou¬≠ra¬≠ge your approach to crea¬≠ti¬≠vi¬≠ty, or how did you deve¬≠lop this par¬≠ti¬≠cu¬≠lar gift for pho¬≠to¬≠gra¬≠phy, design and art?

MARCO MOROSINI: My par¬≠ents indi¬≠rect¬≠ly brought me to crea¬≠ti¬≠vi¬≠ty becau¬≠se they mode¬≠led exact¬≠ly the oppo¬≠si¬≠te for me. They never stood in the way of my deve¬≠lo¬≠p¬≠ment and I per¬≠cei¬≠ved that as a very posi¬≠ti¬≠ve thing. My father has a spe¬≠cial bio¬≠gra¬≠phy. He comes from a very poor fami¬≠ly, you could say he was an ‚Äěout¬≠law‚Äú in inver¬≠ted com¬≠mas and took every oppor¬≠tu¬≠ni¬≠ty to extri¬≠ca¬≠te hims¬≠elf from this situa¬≠ti¬≠on. My mother comes from a simp¬≠le peasant fami¬≠ly. For the two of them, a frame on the wall was a pic¬≠tu¬≠re, regard¬≠less of what was in the frame. In my child¬≠hood and ado¬≠lescence, we never tal¬≠ked about art or visi¬≠ted a muse¬≠um. Howe¬≠ver, I play¬≠ed a lot of Lego, which encou¬≠ra¬≠ged my gift for com¬≠po¬≠si¬≠ti¬≠on. In my room I was allo¬≠wed to deve¬≠lop as I wan¬≠ted. Some¬≠ti¬≠mes the walls were black, some¬≠ti¬≠mes yel¬≠low. Once the room beca¬≠me a church, then a car¬≠pen¬≠try shop, then a dis¬≠co¬≠the¬≠que. My par¬≠ents never restric¬≠ted me the¬≠re, and I‚Äôm gra¬≠te¬≠ful to them for that.

How would you defi¬≠ne beau¬≠ty? Does it have a rai¬≠son d‚Äô√™t¬≠re when it comes to design and art?

MARCO MOROSINI: Beau¬≠ty is uni¬≠ver¬≠sal. It is an over¬≠ar¬≠ching con¬≠cept, some¬≠thing God-given. It is in design, in art, in music; it ari¬≠ses from har¬≠mo¬≠ny. I like to keep it the¬≠re with Fran¬≠co Maria Ric¬≠ci, who always pro¬≠c¬≠lai¬≠med: ‚ÄěBeau¬≠ty must be che¬≠ris¬≠hed and cared for.‚Äú Not pre¬≠ser¬≠ving it is, in my opi¬≠ni¬≠on, a vio¬≠la¬≠ti¬≠on of natu¬≠ral laws. For examp¬≠le, let¬≠ting his¬≠to¬≠ri¬≠cal buil¬≠dings from pre¬≠vious cen¬≠tu¬≠ries fall into dis¬≠re¬≠pair is some¬≠thing I con¬≠si¬≠der to be one such vio¬≠la¬≠ti¬≠on. For me, it is also ulti¬≠mate¬≠ly always the beau¬≠ty that brings me wonder.

How do the terms beau¬≠ty, pas¬≠si¬≠on, art and design rela¬≠te to each other ‚Äď is the¬≠re a com¬≠mon deno¬≠mi¬≠na¬≠tor in your idea?

MARCO MOROSINI: I would redu¬≠ce this to the effort not to pol¬≠lu¬≠te your own soul. To keep the soul pure, I must face beau¬≠ty and not reject it. Beau¬≠ty often meets us, but we must also be able to accept it and cul¬≠ti¬≠va¬≠te it.

How do you defi­ne the design pro­cess of Mar­co Moro­si­ni, and what role do visi­ons and dreams play in your design?

MARCO MOROSINI: Mmh‚Ķ Moro¬≠si¬≠ni has deve¬≠lo¬≠ped many ide¬≠as that exist on paper as a design, but were not pro¬≠du¬≠ced. I have often imple¬≠men¬≠ted gra¬≠phic con¬≠cepts in the past. Many of my most inno¬≠va¬≠ti¬≠ve works are still in the dra¬≠wer. They are not a respon¬≠se to com¬≠mer¬≠cial needs, but are real inno¬≠va¬≠tions. It requi¬≠res cou¬≠ra¬≠ge and ‚Äědis¬≠sen¬≠ters‚Äú to bring them to mar¬≠ket. I never copied anything. My ide¬≠as and objects are like my voice, which suits me becau¬≠se it is natu¬≠ral. The drea¬≠ming, the fan¬≠ta¬≠sy, some¬≠ti¬≠mes comes over me even in the midd¬≠le of con¬≠ver¬≠sa¬≠ti¬≠ons; I then shift the atten¬≠ti¬≠on, begin to sketch and sink into it. If some¬≠thing comes out of it, it has not¬≠hing to do with a com¬≠mer¬≠cial¬≠ly thought-out plan. And that gives my work a natu¬≠ral reco¬≠gni¬≠ti¬≠on value. I am not a ‚Äěfol¬≠lower‚Äú, but a ‚Äěcreator‚Äú. And if you are, then you can¬≠not aban¬≠don this gift, but it takes you over, whe¬≠ther you like it or not, whe¬≠ther the moment is appro¬≠pria¬≠te or inappropriate.

So trends do not play a role in your design-ori¬≠en¬≠ted work‚Ķ

MARCO MOROSINI: I am not influ­en­ced by trends, but I am inspi­red by today’s socie­ty. We find the grea­test inspi­ra­ti­on out­side our usu­al envi­ron­ment, whe­re it is least expected.

What role do you think art should play in our socie­ty, but also in are­as such as eco­no­mics or ecology?

MARCO MOROSINI: Art has to be part of edu­ca­ti­on, it has to beco­me part of our edu­ca­ti­on sys­tem and it has to find its way into the life of all of us as ear­ly as pos­si­ble. Art is some­thing abs­tract, and yet the only vehi­cle to open up other dimen­si­ons to you. Art takes you pla­ces you would­n’t be able to go without it. A life that expe­ri­en­ces enga­ge­ment with art is a dif­fe­rent kind of exis­tence, and this cir­cum­s­tance can be essen­ti­al to a healt­hy socie­ty. This then has a fur­ther impact on the mind­ful hand­ling of eco­no­mics and eco­lo­gy. Natu­re has the most crea­ti­ve forms that exist, rising abo­ve ever­ything else. Anyo­ne who has a natu­ral under­stan­ding of art can­not help but respect natu­re in all its manifestations.

How could one mana­ge to make it easier for peop­le to access art, so that they beco­me desi­gners ins­tead of administrators?

MARCO MOROSINI: Not ever­yo­ne can be a desi­gner. I, for one, can­not play foot­ball eit­her. Ever­y­bo­dy has their skills. It is important to cul­ti­va­te what you can and like to do. If the­re are desi­gners in our socie­ty, they should be valued as such. And in terms of access, I belie­ve in wide­ly avail­ab­le art, acces­si­ble art. Art does not have to be exhi­bi­ted in a gal­le­ry to be appre­cia­ted by a select group of peop­le. Art can then make a dif­fe­rence, and I am con­vin­ced of this when it opens up public spaces.

Accord­ing to what cri­te­ria and vir­tu­es do you defi­ne a suc­cess­ful desi­gner or suc­cess­ful artist? On what does suc­cess pri­ma­ri­ly depend?

MARCO MOROSINI: Here, I would first start with a ques¬≠ti¬≠on about the defi¬≠ni¬≠ti¬≠on: Is only the visu¬≠al artist an artist? I don‚Äôt think so. An artist is someo¬≠ne who mana¬≠ges to open up a new dimen¬≠si¬≠on to you through their expres¬≠si¬≠on. We have a say¬≠ing: someo¬≠ne who works with their hands is a worker; someo¬≠ne who works with their hands and head is a craft¬≠s¬≠man; and someo¬≠ne who works with their hands, head and heart is an artist. You can feel the dif¬≠fe¬≠rence, whe¬≠ther an object ful¬≠fills only a cer¬≠tain pur¬≠po¬≠se or has an artis¬≠tic soul. In my opi¬≠ni¬≠on, suc¬≠cess has not¬≠hing to do with the qua¬≠li¬≠ty of art. The¬≠re are many suc¬≠cess¬≠ful ‚Äěartists‚Äú who¬≠se work has no soul and vice ver¬≠sa. Well-known Ita¬≠li¬≠an car manu¬≠fac¬≠tu¬≠rers have used your exper¬≠ti¬≠se as a designer.

Accord¬≠ing to which cri¬≠te¬≠ria were you selec¬≠ted and with which USPs or con¬≠cepts were you able to make a con¬≠vin¬≠cing case?

MARCO MOROSINI: Yes, that‚Äôs true. Alt¬≠hough I pre¬≠fer to talk about the future, I used to work for Fer¬≠ra¬≠ri, for examp¬≠le. At that time, I was dis¬≠co¬≠ve¬≠r¬≠ed through my pro¬≠ject ‚Äěuomi¬≠niuo¬≠mi¬≠ni‚Äú and could sub¬≠se¬≠quent¬≠ly win peop¬≠le over with my pro¬≠ject ide¬≠as. In the¬≠se times, empha¬≠sis was pla¬≠ced on the artis¬≠tic approach of a desi¬≠gner. This has chan¬≠ged a gre¬≠at deal in recent years. Now, the focus is rather on eco¬≠no¬≠mic efficiency.

Can you plea­se brief­ly exp­lain how you came up with the brand BRANDINA, and how this extra­or­di­na­ry life­style pro­ject developed?

MARCO MOROSINI: Bran¬≠di¬≠na was a ran¬≠dom inven¬≠ti¬≠on. I made a book about the life¬≠guards in Rimi¬≠ni. I made the cover from the mate¬≠ri¬≠al of the deck¬≠chairs, which are col¬≠lo¬≠quial¬≠ly cal¬≠led Bran¬≠di¬≠na. And the qua¬≠li¬≠ty of this mate¬≠ri¬≠al con¬≠vin¬≠ced me and my wife Bar¬≠ba¬≠ra to make bags from it. This is how the Bran¬≠di¬≠na brand was crea¬≠ted. The idea alo¬≠ne was¬≠n‚Äôt enough to bring suc¬≠cess, but we had to be able to imple¬≠ment it in a sophisti¬≠ca¬≠ted way. Today, ‚ÄěBran¬≠di¬≠na‚Äú is popu¬≠lar, espe¬≠cial¬≠ly becau¬≠se the bags and access¬≠ories are not fashion¬≠ab¬≠le. Rather, Bran¬≠di¬≠na embo¬≠dies a kind of life¬≠style of inde¬≠pen¬≠dence. In essence, it is about a ‚Äěposi¬≠ti¬≠ve mood‚Äú.

You bought a more or less dila¬≠pi¬≠da¬≠ted cast¬≠le here and reno¬≠va¬≠ted it with a lot of love: Cas¬≠tel¬≠lo di  Grana¬≠ro¬≠la ‚Äď how did this come about?

MARCO MOROSINI: I only rea¬≠li¬≠zed the beau¬≠ty of the place later. I brought back some¬≠thing his¬≠to¬≠ri¬≠cal that had been des¬≠troy¬≠ed. It is a gift to mys¬≠elf and also to all the peop¬≠le who like to come here and feel com¬≠for¬≠ta¬≠ble. Some¬≠ti¬≠mes it does¬≠n‚Äôt take so much to make some¬≠thing ‚Äěbeau¬≠ti¬≠ful‚Äú. Even simp¬≠le ges¬≠tu¬≠res can be enor¬≠mous¬≠ly effec¬≠ti¬≠ve. This world deman¬≠ds beau¬≠ty, and that is not always rela¬≠ted to finan¬≠cial pos¬≠si¬≠bi¬≠li¬≠ties. In the Cas¬≠tel¬≠lo di Grana¬≠ro¬≠la, you have dia¬≠lo¬≠gues, you have expe¬≠ri¬≠en¬≠ces, and you live and expe¬≠ri¬≠ence an artis¬≠tic spi¬≠rit. It has beco¬≠me an inter¬≠na¬≠tio¬≠nal¬≠ly renow¬≠ned place, a retre¬≠at for art, cul¬≠tu¬≠re and beau¬≠ty, some¬≠thing authen¬≠tic and at the same time spon¬≠ta¬≠ne¬≠ous. Ever¬≠ything here is con¬≠nec¬≠ted with my joy in designing and doing. Ever¬≠yo¬≠ne who visits the cast¬≠le is living this expe¬≠ri¬≠ence with me, and that‚Äôs great.

What pro¬≠jects are you cur¬≠r¬≠ent¬≠ly working on, and what do you want for the future or what expec¬≠ta¬≠ti¬≠ons do you have?

MARCO MOROSINI: I am cur¬≠r¬≠ent¬≠ly working on pro¬≠jects for Valen¬≠ti¬≠no Ros¬≠si. His new store, which I was able to design, will open at the end of Novem¬≠ber. Working for such a ‚Äělegend‚Äú is some¬≠thing very spe¬≠cial. I am gra¬≠te¬≠ful for that. The store is a real pil¬≠grimage site for the fans, so it is an extre¬≠me¬≠ly important place. And I wan¬≠ted to achie¬≠ve this in essence: You will not enter a store, but a place that has a soul, the soul of a legend. And as far as the future is con¬≠cer¬≠ned, I plan to move my design stu¬≠dio to the grounds of the cast¬≠le. The under¬≠ly¬≠ing oli¬≠ve gro¬≠ve is sui¬≠ta¬≠ble for this pur¬≠po¬≠se. As a result, the site is to be expan¬≠ded by one ele¬≠ment and made even more diver¬≠se. In princip¬≠le, I only want to design more pro¬≠jects in the stu¬≠dio that ori¬≠gi¬≠na¬≠te from art and not from a busi¬≠ness plan. Honest¬≠ly, I am not a fan of expec¬≠ta¬≠ti¬≠ons, becau¬≠se expec¬≠ta¬≠ti¬≠ons per se imply disappointment.

Even if we under¬≠stand what Mar¬≠co Moro¬≠si¬≠ni is try¬≠ing to say, we defi¬≠ni¬≠te¬≠ly can¬≠not agree with the last state¬≠ment at this moment. The con¬≠ver¬≠sa¬≠ti¬≠on with him and our days in the ‚ÄěCas¬≠tel¬≠lo di Grana¬≠ro¬≠la‚Äú pro¬≠ved exact¬≠ly the oppo¬≠si¬≠te: our expec¬≠ta¬≠ti¬≠ons were far excee¬≠ded. We are gra¬≠te¬≠ful for this acquain¬≠tance, the crea¬≠ti¬≠ve exchan¬≠ge and fasci¬≠na¬≠ted by a place that is enli¬≠vened by its tireless creator.

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