I am a lover of all things Fornasetti but I especially love Fornasetti plates. Whenever I find, purchase and am prepared to share my treasures on my site, they are gone before I even get them photographed. Their value continues to rise. Collectors are always searching for ‘one particular plate’, one that they can’t live without, the one that completes one set. This of course is the way for any collector. Collectors collect. Collectors hunt.
Piero Fornasetti was an artist. He painted, sculpted, engraved and created luscious interiors. He lived most of his life in Milan. During World War II he went into exile in Switzerland from 1943-46. During his lifetime he created more than 13,000 pieces of art, many with the face of operatic soprano Lina Cavalieri. Fornasetti had found her face in a 19th century magazine. “What inspired me to create more than 500 variations on the face of a woman?” asked Piero Fornasetti of himself. “I don’t know” he admits, “I began to make them and I never stopped”. Common themes in Fornasetti’s work are heavy use of black and white, the sun, time and Greek and Roman architecture and of course, the face of Lina Cavalieri.
I has always been intrigued by the fact that Fornasetti used only one face in much of his work, I thought she was his Beatrice but alas, it appears, she was not.
Today the Fornasetti Atelier in Milan still employs the exclusive handcrafted artisan techniques that have always been used. The Atelier is composed of a group of extremely skilled craftsmen. Much of the work is still done by hand. Much is produced in limited editions. The company remains in the hands of Piero’s son, Barnaba who continues to design in his father’s name.
This is but a small samplings of what is out there. Just a taste of what is available. How do you feel about Fornasetti? Let me know. Some people feel it is too intimate, the face, the eyes….peering into your home, what do you think?