Interview with Myriam Cappelletti
(La manifattura della Mente)

by Ilaria Ferri

Fabio Bini was born in Florence in 1954, he is the CEO of a large metalworking company. Always with a great passion for art, project and design, being creative he designs objects and furniture and gadgets himself, he has collaborations with the University of Design of Calenzano collaborated with international artists such as Mauro Staccioli , Bruno Gambone, Silvia Tuccimei. He currently lives and works in Florence.

Myriam Cappelletti was born in Umbria but has lived for many years in Tuscany in the city of Prato. She attended and obtained the artistic high school diploma in Verona and subsequently the diploma in painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence, the diploma in advertising graphics at the Cappiello Academy in Florence, two years of specialization in the fresco technique in Prato. She has exhibited in many fairs and exhibitions abroad (Seoul, New York, Munich, Bratislava, Miami, Paris, Sofia, Shanghai, Singapore). Some of her works are in Italian collections and foundations.

​The work “L’abito del tempo che passa”, a finalist in the 9th edition of the COMEL Award, is an elegant reflection on exteriority, which is often a façade hiding instead the dense ramification of feelings, emotions and knowledge that characterise humanity and on which time looms, its inexorable passage quantified and marked by numbers. How did the idea for this work come about? And that of participating in the Endless Aluminium edition of the COMEL award?

The initial idea immediately seemed to us to be quite relevant to the theme of infinity proposed by COMEL, the garment with intersecting lines, the wefts that do not end at a precise point but extend like roots, the game with the mirror that multiplies space. So, from my drawing we moved on to the realisation, and here Fabio’s skills were also decisive in the installation of all the various parts of the work. Aluminium, after some experimentation with different metals, immediately seemed to us to be an excellent, ductile, and luminous material.

The Manifattura della Mente is a collaboration between artist Myriam Cappelletti and entrepreneur and designer Fabio Bini. You both have your own path and have already collaborated with other artists and professionals. How did your collaboration come about? What meaning do you attribute to the name ‘The Manifacture of the Mind’?

Manifattura della Mente (Manifacture of the mind): the thought that is born, the project that grows in collaboration and confrontation and then the realisation, ‘making with hand’, Manifattura. Fabio had this intuition and took care of the logo. Friendship and a passion for contemporary art then contributed to bringing these projects to light with great synergy and also with great fun.

​The dress, never taken in a realistic sense or as a fashion fad, is a recurring motif in your artistic career; it is a symbol and a means of telling something. Through the use of different materials, it suggests an idea, or a feeling. What does it mean for you to use the dress as a conceptual ‘tool’?

The dress, the dress is a pretext, a form, a “great dwelling” a container of life that unwinds, seeks different paths sometimes tortuous, I often represent them with branches or roots in search of a possible way, a solution. Time is a tyrant only if we do not allow ourselves to be trapped by it, in reality, time helps us remember, it marks emotions and everything that matters. The threads open and close in infinite perspectives.

​Perhaps as a consequence of your interest in clothes or perhaps because of this, you often use textile material, combined with paper and of course canvas, managing to give a harmonious blend of techniques and materials through painting and composition. A harmony that transcends time, which in part takes you back to the past while actually being very modern.

I have acquired and used textiles over time, also encouraged by the fact that I live in a city where almost all the industries work in textiles. I love to leave a trace of my experience and actually in my works, as if in a sort of small relics, I embed some textiles that belonged to my family, as if this kind of preservation somehow prevents me from forgetting.

Time is another distinctive feature of many of your works. Sometimes it is a fleeting reference, a fact inferred from shapes, colours and materials, a feeling that remains when observing your works. What is time for you? How does it relate to your artistic journey?

I often mention “time” in titles, sometimes I also write about how important it is that it must not be wasted, in fear of the obsessive rhythms that life sometimes imposes on us, to the detriment of a reflective journey.

From painting (Myriam Cappelletti graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence in painting) to installations, from canvas to textile materials and many others. How did your artistic path and desire to explore other materials develop?

The curiosity and stimuli that getting to know other realities gives me, push me towards continuous experimentation, which is necessary for enrichment not only at work but also as a human being. And in this, both Fabio and I have the same tenacity and energy.

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