PRINT September 2010

Francesco Vezzoli

Francesco Vezzoli, Homage to Josef Albers’s “Homage to the Square” (Green), 1995, cotton embroidery on canvas, 5 1/8 x 5 1/8".

I’M FASCINATED by other people’s style, and so from time to time I appropriate or travesty those styles. It’s almost a form of drag. During the first eight years of my career, among other activities, I embroidered replicas of famous abstract paintings in needlework: dozens of Josef Albers’s homages to the square, some with glitter thread; Bauhaus glass in needlework; Frank Stellas; a big Vasarely tapestry. Recently, I made some collage needleworks sampling the early paintings of Giorgio de Chirico. I’ve shot videos that evoke the films of great directors—Cocteau and Truffaut, for example. I think of the concept of ownership as something that applies to other people, not myself.

I’m drawn to artists—and I include designers, directors, and so on in that category—who seem to feel the same way, who don’t “own” a particular approach or look. When I was a kid, the god for

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