Olimpia Zagnoli was born in a leap year in a small town in northern Italy. At a young age, she moved to Milan where she currently lives and works. Her visual vocabulary is characterised by soft shapes and chameleon-like colours. Over the years, she has collaborated with Taschen, Google, “The New York Times” and “Apartamento Magazine”. Along with commissioned work, Olimpia conducts her own artistic research, the results of which have been exhibited in various galleries around the world. In 2019, “The New Yorker” published her first cover story.
Caleidoscopica takes us on a journey through the last ten years of the career of Olimpia Zagnoli, an internationally renowned illustrator whose sinuous and colourful images have quickly conquered the worlds of publishing, fashion and communication. Her unmistakable stroke guides us through the 148 pages of this anthology in an overwhelming sequence of works – drawings, prints, neon, textiles and sculptures – that are juxtaposed by free association or by clear affinities of theme, colour and form.
The rhythm of this immersive journey is punctuated by a series of texts and thoughts from authors working in the fields of illustration, design and art, offering multiple and original readings of Olimpia’s work. The uniqueness of the publication is enhanced by a series of sketches, contained in notebooks of visual notes and preparatory works that reveal the creative process through which Olimpia, seeking the synthesis of the image, arrives at the essence of the message with the freshness and naturalness that make her unique. The book, edited by Melania Gazzotti, is addressed to lovers of illustration, to all those interested in design, fashion, style and looking for inspiration, and to all Olimpia’s fans. Caleidoscopica will also be an exhibition in Reggio Emilia planned for September 2021.
Edited by Melania Gazzotti Texts by Melania Gazzotti, Kim Hastreiter, Steven Heller, Italo Lupi, Paola Pallottino, Guido Scarabottolo, Leanne Shapton, Peter Shire, Tamara Shopsin Book design by Bunker
19.5 × 26 cm 148 pages Hardback with mirror glasses Italian/English Isbn 978-88-98030-35-4 First published March 2021
The book, edited by Melania Gazzotti, stems from an experience in Tuscany, in the summer. It marks the beginning of an editorial collaboration with the Mutty cultural space in Castiglione delle Stiviere, whose bookshop moves to Castagneto Carducci, in the hills facing the sea, in fine weather.
Olimpia Zagnoli, invited by Mutty to hold a summer workshop there, takes us on an exploration of an expressive territory she has never before tackled: landscape. She does so by going through the entire creative process, starting from careful and acute observation, breaking down perceived reality with the use of techniques that are unusual or new to her, distorting its colours, and reconstructing it with her own unmistakable style, to finally arrive at transmitting a vision of the same transformed reality. As often happens in summer.
The reader will be able to follow the entire generative and investigative path, from the sketches to the digital plates, to the tasty textual interventions – also unusual for the artist – and thus better appreciate the fruit of this extraordinary work. An unpublished within the unpublished, therefore, a book that shares the point of view of one of Italy’s best-loved illustrators, a precious testimony that cannot be missed on the enthusiast’s shelf: new themes, new techniques, new approach. In the sign of an unmistakable style, the landscape seen through Olimpia’s large round glasses.
Edited by Melania Gazzotti Texts by lva Buselli, Melania Gazzotti, Sandra Gobbato, Stefano Salis, Olimpia Zagnoli Photos by Miro Zagnoli Book design by Bunker
16.5 × 22.5 cm 80 pages Hardback Italian/English Isbn 978-88-98030-09-5 First published September 2016