Master Stefano Festa, A biographical outline

19 2010

Master Stefano Festa, A biographical outline

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Stefano Festa was born in Milan. In 1970, when he is only 12 years old, he meets the postcubist painter Ibrahim Kodra, a close friend and artistic heir of Picasso, who recognizes in Festa strong artistic flairs.

So young, Festa begins to attend regularly the Masters studio located in Milan, as his pupil and then as his personal art assistant for 22 years long, up to 1992, following Kodra in his frenetic activity in Italy and abroad.

The painting of Kodra, who exhibited also with Kokoschka, Picasso, Matisse, Mirò, Modigliani, and the attendance of the artistic milieu around his Master will play a strong role in the artistic education of Festa and in the development of his peculiar social commitment to the promotion and watching of art and artists as well.

Among the well-known personages the young Festa meets and is acquainted with, there are poets, directors, actors, painters such as, just to mention a few, Montale, Strehler, Calindri, Russoli, Queen, Guttuso, Zichichi, Fò, Munari, Bay, Rotella.

It has been of prime importance his meeting with Giorgio De Chirico in 1974, that will take Festa to conceive a new artistic current named "Psicosimbolismo” (Psychosymbolism) of whom Festa is today the founder.

Festas painting is strongly influenced by Freuds thinking. On the chessboard (that represents the chessboard of life where everyman plays his match), a physical and conceptual basis, the forces of the Self, represented by the symbol of the elm, are in dialectical opposition to the instinctive impulses of Es and the requests of the Super Self. Afterwards Festa will develop the so called "Archeosofia” (Archeosophy) and the "Blusofia” (Bluesophy).

1979: (International Year of Child) Stefano Festa makes for Unicef the work named “Prospettiva sul loro futuro“ – Prospective view on their future). In the following years, he works and exhibits in many solo and collective art exhibitions together with the major contemporary arts Masters (Accame, Bay, Brindisi, Fabbri, Warhol, Viviani, Treccani, Rotella, Restany, Tadini, Haring, Bianco).

1990: Festa opens his first studio in Milan, at Palazzo Terragni, (in the neighborhood named “Isola“ which is today the area of fashion and art). His work is published in the book “Ritratti di pittori – Portraits of painters“ by Peter Boggia (Publishing editor “La Gazzetta del Mattino“ of Rome) along with names such as De Chirico, Guttuso, Lam, Miro’, Tozzi, Music, Manzù and others.

1991: he is invited to take part in an important art exhibition dedicated to Piero della Francesca (on the occasion of the 5th centenary of his death) supported by the Italian Consulate of New York. In Italy, the exhibition is held at the Pinacoteca of Brera in Milano, at Palazzo Ducale of Urbino, at Centro Modigliani of Scandicci and in many other prestigious places, before remaining permanently in Urbino (organization by D’ARS Agency, Milano).

1992: along with Fiume, Tadini, Brindisi and other artists, Festa makes the fresco “Lotta giuridica – Legal fight“ in the IV Courtroom of the penal magistrates court of Milan Court. The work of art, which is of large dimensions, meets great success also among the mass media.

1994: on the occasion of the First Centenary of the Flag of the Carabinieri Force, he makes two memorial stamps.

1997: at the prestigious Cultural Centre of Athens, at the Hellenic Cultures Minister invitation Festa exhibits 60 works of art in his one-man exhibition “Archeosofia del futuro“ (introduction by Antonia Cagnoni). His exhibition earns such a success that the Italian Culture Institute of Athens, in collaboration with the local institutions, organizes another one-man exhibition in the Marussi area where a big audience gathers on the occasion of its opening. In the same year, his work of art “Cento anni dei Carabinieri in missione di pace nel mondo - One Hundred Years of the Carabinieri on world peace mission“ is placed in the Press Room of the Carabinieri Force of Milan.

1998: his art exhibition “Archeosofia del futuro“, at the Torre Viscontea, Museo Civico of Lecco, is successful and attracts a big audience, more than one thousand of people at the opening and 4 thousand visitors. In this art exhibition Stefano Festa also displays some works of art belonging to his "Blusofia” (catalogue with an introduction by Norman Zoia). The work of art “Stimolo alla Ricerca“, made to support the medical research against Aids, is given by Festa to the Ospedale Maggiore Niguarda Cà Granda, during an official cerimony at the Press Room of the Lumbardy Region.

He plans the Prize “Angelo Dell’Anno –Angel of the Year“ getting in touch with the newspaper Corriere della Sera and other national ones.

1999: Festa officially presents the Prize “Angelo Dell’Anno – Angel of the Year” at Grand Hotel et de Milan, in front of one thousand of people who enthusiastic would follow him regularly in the following editions. The "Angelo dellAnno” awards a prize to eminent subjects, but also not renowned people, who stand out for their good works towards our fellow creatures. Many personages take part to the event, belonging to different social fields (environment, charity, integration, sport, research, security, fashion, show, culture, communication, industry).

The angels of the year are awarded a work of art individually made by Festa, a self-portrait made by the international photographer Bob Krieger and a jewel made (exclusively for the Prize) by the maison Mario Buccellati.

1999/2000: first edition of the Prize, which caused quite a stir among the mass media. The Prize has become one of the most appreciated happening of the City.

During the years 2000 – 2004, Festa makes important contacts in Italy and abroad. He is awarded and receives many credits, he makes a lot of works of art for institutions and private subjects. Among his works, in 2000 the "Gold medal for Charity” of the City Council of Milan and, in 2003, the "Plaque for Culture of the Province of Milan”, the "Italian Cup for Solidarity” made for the National Soccer TV Association (General Manager Vittorio Fagioli) and, in 2004, the art work for the 110th anniversary of the foundation of the Società Edificatrice Niguarda (1894-2004), President Giovanni Poletti.

2004: Festa founds “SolidArte“ onlus – Social and Cultural Association supporting solidarity for art and artists (, officially introduced by him in June during a gala evening at the “Lions Club Milano Leonardo da Vinci“, preview in August at the Biennale d’Arte “Angelo Garofalo“ at Lioni (AV) and officially in September at the Conservatorio “Giuseppe Verdi “ of Milan, with a concert by the Krasnoyarsk Chamber Orchestra, in presence of Sergej Krylov, Claudia Buccellati, Bob Krieger, Vittoria Palazzo, Enrico Beruschi, Oriella Dorella, Mario Giuliacci and other well-known personages.

2005: Festa campaigns, in collaboration with the pages of the daily newspaper "Il Giorno”, to make the people aware of the need to watch the last workshops of artists and craftsmen in the historical area of the Naviglio, the river channels made by Leonardo da Vinci. The campaign “Save the Navigli and his Artists” points out the negative increasing trend to commercialize the area which spoils the antique flair of these spots. Festas campaign is followed by the newspaper "Corriere della Sera”, "La Repubblica” and other important newspapers, triggering off cultural debates with the partecipation of many important intellectuals and authorities.

2007: eighth edition of the Prize "Angelo dellAnno“ at the Teatro Dal Verme, (more than 1,700 people); the event is always supported by the City Council of Milan, the Province of Milan and the Lumbardy Region. Among the prizewinners awarded a work of art by Festa there are Vip such as Philippe Daverio, former Culture councillor at the City Council of Milan; Milena Gabanelli, Rai 3 reporter; Fiorenzo Galli, Director of the Museo Nazionale della Scienza e della Tecnologia "Leonardo da Vinci” of Milan; Enrico Ruggeri, the popular singersongwriter; Gennaro Gattuso, the soccer world champion; Mont Blanc, the internationally-known brand. These vip are only a few to mention, without forgetting the Lama Gangchen, and many other important prizewinners awarded in the previous editions such as the designer Miuccia Prada, the writer Giuseppe Pontiggia, the director Lattuada and others.

In the same year of 2007, on the occasion of the 146th anniversari of the establishment of the Italian Army, Festa promotes at Palazzo Cusani (in collaboration with the General Commander of the Lumbardy Army and with the President of the City Council of Milan) the first edition of the event

“Esercito in...Festa – Army in Festa“, in the heart of the neighbourhood of Brera, one day dedicated to Art, with the participation of renowned artists, members of SolidArte, Vip belonging to institutions of the city and other. The success of the event has caused such a stir in the whole country that it has already been confirmed the second edition that will take place at a renowned theatre in Milan in April 2008. Festa has begun a collaboration with the Osservatoriocards and his president Maurizio Pimpinella, with whom he will develop many projects.

For the following fourth time, Festa will take care of lonely people during Christmas Day and he will be the artistic director of the event “Natale in...Festa con l’Esercito - Christmas in …Festa with the Army” dedicated to the elderly who, at Christmas (which is also the birthday of Stefano Festa) are really alone, without nobody looking after them. The day, a real Christmas Feast, will be filled with care, love, artists and gifts for above 200 people. The event will take place at the Military Hospital of Baggio (Milan), held by the General Commander of the Lumbardy Army.

2008: Festa, as President of the association SolidArte, received the prestigious award "Civica Benemerenza” officially handed to him by the Mayor of the City Council of Milan, Letizia Moratti, in the presence of the President of the City Council, Manfredi Palmieri, during the traditional annual ceremony of the "Ambrogino dOro” held at the Teatro Dal Verme on the 7th of December.

Photo: © Silvia Michela Carrassi

Source by Silvia Michela Carrassi

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