Aguinaldo Perrone (Aguìn) is an Italian designer who seems to channel the spirit of Fortunato Depero. He recently published his own homage to Depero’s Bolted Book, titled “Catalogo Ragionato” or “Reasoned Catalog of Useless Brands …” (a “reasoned catalog” or catalogue raisonné is a complete list, with annotations, of all the known works made by an artist either in a particular medium or in all media.) as limited edition of 100 copies on various colored sheets, different in all editions. All the posters (below) are for imaginary products. The text and posters explain his unique philosophy of “Cartellonism = modernity” Aguìn’s Cartellonism of design goes like this:
“The error is the most beautiful part of a design”
“Image + letters + irony (a lot) = cartellonism”
In the first part of this impressively thick artifact are Aquin’s reflections on poster art. The rest of the book includes forty of his graphics for imaginary products. The text was printed by hand for the original copy and then digitally. He also used some typefaces and advertising cliches of the 1930s through the 70s. I asked him more about this object and his devotion to Italian design history (below):
“My passion for poster art was born in the ’70s, when I was a child admiring the posters that were then the contemporary of advertising. As a self-taught person, I started drawing in the late ’80s inspired by that world of graphics using always two colors: blue and red. All my drawings tell of the magic of advertising, especially Italian, which was able to ‘sell’ the goods using a graphic code often elementary but strongly ironic (Carosello, with Pino Pascali, I Fratelli Gavioli, Osvaldo Cavandoli, Armando Testa …). I use only paper and wood as materials. My art plays with posters to relaunch it, as opposed to contemporary advertising, for me too far from art and whose sole purpose is to sell often useless products.”
“The title ‘Reasoned catalog of useless brands …’ is a game to ridicule the seriousness of marketing. Therefore, taking my invented brands as a pretext, I collected some of my graphics that I think are particularly funny and ironic. My catalog collects in the manner of Depero (my research reference point) my idea of poster art when advertising was an art form. I used old movable characters found after long searches, impressed one by one like stamps on a piece of paper. My graphics (in the manner of Depero) are my ‘posters’: how I wish it was advertising today.”
“My research is currently pushing to design advertising sculptures. For example, the ‘Padiglione F’, a fair pavilion, a place in the form of a typeface (an ‘F’) to be used as a cultural container (below and above are drawings and photos of the wooden model I had made for a previous graphic competition in Paris and that I would like to use it to develop my next project).”“Over the years my research has also focused on advertising gadgets. Hence my realization of the advertising men in wood, by futuristic inspiration. Among my publications entirely made by hand (including texts) there is finally ‘Chiedete la luna’, An illustrated book to tell the great magic of posters and the disillusionment of modern advertising.
The “Catalogo Ragionato” is currently cataloged at the Mart (Rovereto) and at the Library of Salaborsa (Bologna).