by Isabella Trew and Giulia Piceni. Cover Image: photo collage by Massimo Romanelli, photograph by Asia Niero.
In cinema, there are innumerable depictions of art schools, including Monalisa Smile (2003) and Fame (1980). While disciplines may vary, the storyline is unchanging: events set in an academic environment that helps students shine bright in their fields. In this sense, the cinema industry has shaped the imagination of young creatives about their future education.
On this warm winter Saturday morning, aspiring students from different parts of the world reminisced about their childhood dreams in the corridors of Istituto Marangoni Firenze on Via Tornabuoni. Because this is the school they fantasised about while watching the TV screen when they were little, it is where they will master their skills, and their dreams come true.
FIRST RAYS OF A NEW BEGINNING
The chaotic day kicks off as soon as sunrise. After three months into the year, it is time to discover the other side of Istituto Marangoni Firenze. A side where students eagerly meet their classmates for feedback, suggestions and brainstorming in a relaxed, open atmosphere. A moment when our tutors become our friends, and names are assigned to the rest of the unfamiliar students we encounter through the corridors during our average school days.
The fantastic idea of a real-life “speed date” solved the problem of breaking the ice, with students sitting in front of each other for a 15-minute conversation. Questions like “what is your earliest memory as a child?” or “what is that one thing you wished people knew about you?” helped break the ice.
CABINET OF CURIOSITIES
Each room you entered captivated your curiosity differently. Fashion students shared all their adoration and passion for their craft, opening deep conversations from feminism to natural heritage. Meanwhile, multimedia students were excited to present the possible future of Art with vivid, unusual illustrations and VR experiences.
Regarding Fashion stylists, they had the space and time to get busy with the school’s material, showing us the power of context and frames in partnership with photographers who spiced up the image with lights.
Meanwhile, every student was captivated by the number of magazines, books, colours, tape and scissors, all coming in handy in the Art curating workshop. Here, the participants actively worked on cutting and pasting images and fabrics on a piece of paper which the Digest Staff would later use to build a DIY fanzine of the day. A large sheet of black paper was displayed on the other side of the room with the question:
“What is art?”
This question plagued the students. “You couldn’t have asked an easier question?!” many replied.
PIZZA & FANZINE TO CROWN A MEMORABLE DAY
Finally, the magazine staff called their friends and mates from the design department to help fold and sew the pile of photocopies to shape a DYI fanzine. It was a moment of rush and pressure that required the skills of everyone involved in the project, the students, our tutors and Director of Education Francesca Tavanti.
Clocks were ticking, and sewing machines were running, finally wrapping up with great success! The Visions Disclosure fanzine displayed collages and Multimedia art student Asia Nero’s touching photographs, printed on blue, pink, yellow and green papers: a clear representation of all the diverse talent that constitute Istituto Marangoni Firenze.
We ended the day gathering with a classic Italian pizza.
All in all, this one big family experienced indescribable joy and laughter while ending the year and coming up with new exciting projects.
Happy New Year, “Marangoniers”.
Isabella Trew and Giulia Piceni are undergraduate students in Arts Curating at Istituto Marangoni Firenze.
Asia Niero is an undergraduate student in Multimedia Arts at Istituto Marangoni Firenze.
Massimo Romanelli is a postgraduate student in Master Art Management at Istituto Marangoni Firenze.
Sara Mautone is Tutor of Photography for Fashion Styling & Creative Direction and Multimedia Arts courses at Istituto Marangoni Firenze.