Ali Matteini

a life creative

Firenze, lunedì, week 1

Getting to Art Studio Fuji
I left my apartment in Santa Croce for Art Studio Fuji with plenty of time and a gritty faith in Google Maps. After spending forty minutes looking for a ‘big green door’ I realised that ‘big’ and ‘green’ are relative, I learned that there are three number 85s and a wealth of green doors on Via Guelfa, and I hereby proudly announce that my iphone’s GPS proved as useful as boobs on a bull. I’m thinking it might prove useful-er if Google were to upload a couple of Kafka novels as plugins in conjunction with its maps of Italia…


Not this 85…next to number 61. It’s rare day that I don’t feel like I’m in a Kafka novel.


Definitely not this green door. This one belongs to Teario.


I got there, though: late and sweaty.

The studio is a great space and Naomi my teacher owns a Zen-style type of patience… because, to put it bluntly, my first day I was: hamfisted; kindergartenerish [think: trying to cut out a paper circle when you are five years old and you’re still figuring out whether you are left or right handed]; I seemed unable to even wield a file in any adult manner.
It was as though my silversmithing CPU had wizened and atrophied. Today I’m feeling muscles that haven’t been worked in a good couple of years.
Then Naomi asked me the question I’d been dreading: what did I have in mind in terms of design? After three years, that’s like taking a kid to ToysRUS and asking them to pick just one thing.

Nitty Gritty, Bling Kitty
That feeling of being overwhelmed by inspiration can be almost as bad as having none whatsoever. I looked through photo albums of students’ past designs, discussed vague ideas and through that gained a bit of a pinpoint on the horizon brighter than all the glittery shiny rest vying for my brain’s attention. I always think of our German grandmother, who loved [read, had a bordering fetish for] shiny metallic stickers, holograms, mirrors and other light-reflecting trinkets. I have to say, it’s likely I’ve have a bedazzled bling genetic helix, too.

So I started from scratch: soldering brass. Several pieces on top of the main piece, one beside, and one perpendicular to the main section. This is the result – da-DA!

IMG_6206 2

Even if I had cleaned it up, isn’t it just the ugliest brute you’ve ever seen? Suggestions for it’s use, anyone?

It’s been too long. I’m out of practice and the finer points and important details of working with metal had slipped through the mesh without me noticing…but that perfume of solder, pickle, gas, annealing metal…the flavour that coils around your tongue for hours after you’ve left the studio…I’ve really missed the bling.


One comment on “Firenze, lunedì, week 1

  1. Pingback: 20 hour jewelry workshop in florence |

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