Translating Tradition at Lungomare


Pewter spoon, Max Lamb

The people of South Tyrol, in Northern Italy, have traditionally used visual symbolism to offer social cues—the color of a man’s hat band indicates whether he’s single or married, while the way a farmer wears his blue apron lets you know when he’s off duty. "Translating Tradition," an exhibition opening this Friday at the Lungomare Gallery in Bolzano, Italy, has asked six European designers—including Julia Lohmann, Max Lamb, and Sophie Krier—to reinterpret 10 South Tyrolean customs for a modern audience. (Noticeably absent is work from local designers, a choice the curators made in order to attain a more objective outsider’s perspective.) Londoner Max Lamb has whittled spoons out of fallen branches, molded them in pewter, and cut them out of copper pipe. And because Tyrolean farmer’s wives once held the keys to house and pantry, Sophie Krier has researched what contemporary women hold the key to. It is an exercise that could be conducted anywhere, but in this tiny, 5,000-year-old corner of the Alps, the results are particularly telling. Through August 1. www.lungomare.org


Wooden spoon, Max Lamb


My Key, Sophie Krier

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