Tag Archives: fashion

Silk, Gold, and Renaissance Masculinity

Timothy McCall (Villanova University) will be giving a lecture, ‘Velvet Goldmine: Silk, Gold, and Renaissance Masculinity‘ on Tuesday, July 30, 2019 in the North Theatre (room 149), Old Arts Building, at the University of Melbourne (free but registration required here). The ruling men of Renaissance Italy wrapped themselves in silks and jewels, feathers and pearls. To dazzle the eye, they wore cloth-of-gold and cloth-of-silver, but sometimes the gems were made of paste, intended to deceive observers. All that glittered was not necessarily gold. Building from a study of material extravagance and the symbolic economy of male court fashions, this lecture explores the shining surfaces and things which adorned lords’ bodies and turns a critical eye to material fictions of luxury.  Continue reading

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Slow Clothes: A Tale of Two Brothers, Two Sisters and a Butcher

Catherine Kovesi   University of Melbourne


Sign on wall outside restaurant in Santorini

I started this year with some spinal surgery. The long recuperation which has followed has brought new resonance for me of the Italian concept of ‘Slow’, a concept first articulated by Carlo Petrini back in 1986 as a protest against fast food.  Everything in the last two months for me has had to proceed at a slow pace, sometimes excruciatingly so.  And yet being forced to take things slowly has proved not to be a bad thing overall. Therapists in rehab, kindly helping me to manage my pain levels, have inducted me into Mindfulness Therapy, which I have found very helpful. On reflection, I think that the principles of ‘mindfulness’ lie at the core of ‘slow’ – taking time to think, to observe, to reflect, and just to concentrate on the joys to be had in the simple.  It has reminded me also of the first time I started to understand the broader principles of ‘slow’, on a stunning April day in Florence in 2011, in the extraordinary textile mecca that is the Casa dei Tessuti.

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Power of Luxury flierTo mark the 500th anniversary of Machiavelli’s composition of The Prince, a group of Italian, Australian and US institutions –  the Embassy of Italy in Canberra, the Australian Institute of Art History of the University of Melbourne (Melbourne), the Fondazione per l’Istituto Italiano di Scienze Umane (Milan and Florence), the Museo Poldi Pezzoli (Milan), the Istituto Italiano di Scienze Umane (Florence and Naples) and the UCLA Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies (Los Angeles) – has organised a series of international symposia with the participation of leading Renaissance scholars. The first, The Power of Luxury: Art and Culture at the Italian Courts in Machiavelli’s Lifetime, will be held at the University of Melbourne on 19-20 February 2013. Registration is free, and the programme, abstracts and details of the location can be found here.

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A volte ritornano… la Pasta alla Panna

Edda Orlandi   Milano

5517561761_f2ab6e1fc1_bSe c’è una cosa che mette d’accordo tutti gli italiani è l’idea che panna e burro siano il male assoluto in cucina. Tanto insalubri (“grasso”! “colesterolo”!) quanto pericolosi per identità culinaria nazionale (“non c’entrano niente con la nostra tradizione!”). E in queste circostanze, la pasta con la panna rappresenta un caso emblematico. Continue reading

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