‘Beauty’ is the young Italian’s most recent animation and it is truly striking.
Rino Stefano: bringing painterly masterpieces to life /
The celluloid has been used on different occasions to bring famous artists back to life. While some recreations can be deficient and leave much to be desired, others, in turn, are masterpieces. When we use film to remember those creators that have changed history, we can focus on their lives or on their work; however there are few and fortunate pieces which combine the best of both worlds, for example Nightwatching (2007) by Peter Greenway, which is the sublime adaptation of the life and work of the Dutch creator, Rembrandt van Rijn. Examples like these could be found throughout history, but never before had a creator offered us a short like Beauty (2013) the work of Rino Stefano (Milan, 1980).
115 paintings comprise this 9 minute long digital animation. It features paintings that portray landscapes, portraits, nudes and mythological scenes, many of which were created by William-Adolphe Bouguereau, a neoclassical French painter that channelled and depicted, using oils, the most beautiful angels, nymphs and children. The animation also includes works by Titian, Correggio, Caravaggio, Gericault, Rubens, Dore, Rembrandt and Friedrich. In sum, the animation brings to life, for a few seconds, many of the most representative pieces in the history of Renaissance, Baroque, Flemish, Neoclassical and Romantic art.
The animated adventure begins with an extract from Shakespeare’s 19th Sonnet, a reflection on time and a relentless nature, an appropriate opening that makes us wonder on the beauty of impermanence, the film delights the viewer from its very beginning and the awe inspiring moments last until it ends. The music was composed by Enrico Ascoli. The notability of the musical score adds to the magical halo that encircles the first half of the video, accentuating the sinister aspects of the second half and emphasises the actions of the characters.
Works like this, which combine the best elements of traditional art with cutting edge technology, allow us to reflect on how fruitful the dialogue between the art of the past and that of the present can be. This film reminds us that we can always benefit from learning history; we can reconfigure and reinterpret it at the service of an inspired future.
Tagged: Rino Stefano, animation, inspiration