MARCH 3, 2010

Il Futurismo at the Italian Cultural Institute
Posted By Mary Bird, The Geoegetown Dish, March 3, 2010

Franco SciannameoFortunato Depero 50 - presenting 41 works and 10 vintage prints curated by art critic Maurizio Scudiero - is currently on exhibit at the Italian Cultural Institute located in the Embassy on Whitehaven. The Italian futurist designer, 1892-1960, is best known for his 1932 Campari Soda bottle, still in production, and worked widely in advertising for Macy's and Vogue magazine among other U.S. clients. On Feb. 26, Professor Franco Sciannameo of Carnegie Mellon University's Entertainment Technology Center was at the Embassy to speak on the futurist movement.

Futurism as a coherent and organized artistic movement died at the end of World War II, itself taken over by "the future," but not before it influencing many other twentieth century art movements, including Art Deco, Vorticism, Constructivism, Surrealism and Dada.

In 1918 Depero premiered Balli Plastici, “Plastic Ballet,” a puppet show by geometrical, fantastical multicolored marionettes. The artist transcended the traditional divide between actors, audiences and sets, creating an environment completely distinct from ordinary life. Dr. Sciannameo and a team traveled to Rovereto, Italy, to recreate the artist's vision in a captivating short film which will soon be followed by an interactive video game challenging creative spirits of all ages. For more information and to view the exhibit, contact

Pictured top left: Max Cook and Philippa Hughes
Center: Luigi Volta and his wife Rita Venturelli, Director of the Italian Cultural Institute
Bottom: Alan Hermesch and his wife Susanna Michelsen