Thursday, April 19, 2012

The paper prince Ivano Vitali ...

Ivano Vitali has a penchant for paper that's garnering praise throughout the worlds of art and fashion, and he's an eco-superstar among recycling aficionados, too.

Since 1974, Italian artist and designer Ivano Vitali has collected castoffs to create works of art, at first sculpting with plastic bags and foil, then, migrating to his current medium of choice, recycled newsprint.

The artist has captured the imagination of critics and fans by transforming newspaper into giant threads without the use of glue. He tears the paper into strips and twists into balls of yarn which he uses to knit or crochet into a vast array of vests, dresses and wall tapestries.

Vitali creates each 'zero waste' garment without dyes - saving and sorting printed materials by color, then, painstakingly crafting the garments with his giant wooden needles and hooks using techniques learned as a child at his mother knee.


He has exhibited in galleries across Italy and has had scores of museum exhibits around the globe, including a show of his work at the Blue Star Contemporary Art Center here in San Antonio.

My friend and fellow blogger Cynthia Korzekwa at Art for Housewives Blog reminded me of the incredible talent Vitali possesses. Korzekwa should know. She is a gifted textile artist in her own right who uses pre-existing elements and disassembles them to create another use - 'marcottage' as she calls it.

Vitali's 'marcottage' results from his passion as a performer, ecologist and sculptor who says that his "primary aim remains the communication of the ecological message to all the peoples of the earth, because I believe that wellbeing and happiness are dependent upon a respect for the environment."

Vitali's art shows us that our world can maintain its beauty with careful consideration of its resources. Somehow the environment is just a bit more beautiful because of his commitment to Mother Earth. For an indepth look at Vitali's works, visit his ArtNest website here.

All photos via Ivano Vitali.

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