Private Project

L' Eleganza del cibo

The Elegance of Food, Documentary.

The idea of shooting this documentary stems from the international success of the exhibition “The Elegance of Food”, curated by Stefano Dominella and set up for the occasion of Expo 2015. It was held in the Trojan Markets of the Roman section of Expo. The exhibition then moved to the Italian Institute for Foreign Culture in Hanoi, and finally to the Chelsea Market in New York City. The original itinerary featured two important themes of "Italian know-how”: fashion and food. Clothes and accessories inspired by these themes were united in a curiously fascinating journey that passed through the last seventy years of Italian history. It was a journey through social and cultural time, which soon became a global vision of things. Within the exhibition space, the ob- jects on display take on a sacred value. As visitors observe the objects and clothes, frozen in time, the fascination and pure joy they feel becomes apparent. It is this very same joy that can be seen in the eyes of the people who work each and every day with unfaltering dedication to create the excellent artisanal products found all over Italy. And this is how the exhibition inspired the cre- ation of the documentary.
In both the silence of the Roman countryside and in the quiet fashion ateliers in Rome we will fol- low five intertwined stories that tell a story of the creation of artisanal excellence.
We meet Sergio, a Sardinian shepherd who moved to Bracciano in the seventies. With great dedication he has managed to bring back to life cacio fiore, an ancient Roman type of cheese made with cartoon vegetable rennet, that had been long-forgotten. This is a tradition that is thou- sands of years old, which becomes contemporary through Sergio’s craftsmanship. The process takes place with total respect for both his animals and the environment.
In the area south of Rome, immersed in the greenery of the Castelli Romani, Mauro continues his family-run wine company, making small quantities with excellent quality. He holds great belief in the process he uses, in a place where wine has immense cultural importance. Together with him we will discover the centuries-old tradition of Marino’s grape festival, the Sagra Dell 'Uva.
"Eco-sustainability is the ability to perceive the sacredness of life”. Tiziano Guardini, a young eco- designer from Rome, working between Milan and the Eternal City, has made this concept the key to his work. Nature has a fundamental role in his projects. For example, the grape skins and seeds discarded during wine production make up the essential material of his collections. Fashion and wine, two Italian specialties are married together, in a truly unique, eco-sustainable project. A team of artisans, couturiers and artists work alongside Tiziano to prepare his Fashion Week show in Mi- lan, always with the combination of eco-sustainabity and aesthetics in the forefront of their minds. This is an unusually important parallelism that unites fashion and food, finding a perfect balance in the young designer's work. It is a perfect key to the union of the two worlds.
North east of Rome in the Sabine Hills, the two Gobbi brothers produce extra virgin olive oil. This is not a good period for olive trees, but the jollity of the local inhabitants makes up for this time of scarcity. The oil mill that’s used by all the local producers will be home to a yearly contest where each oil is pitted against the others, for the prize of being named the best local olive oil in the prov- ince.
Finally, in the heart of Rome, in the timeless streets of Via Veneto, Tommaso, a young Junior De- signer, goes to work every day with a distinctive passion for the importance and complexity of his job. He works in the historic Roman Gattinoni atelier, designing clothes under the watchful eye of a great world-renowned designer. The Maison recognises the importance of institutional memory and heritage by handing down its artistic and artisanal secrets to young people who will carry on their fashion trade. There is a sacred ritual attached to this job: all the employees of the Maison Gattinoni have to pay homage to the Madonna del Carmine in Trastevere by sewing a red ruby on her clothes, as a tribute to women victims of violence.
It is through the reflections and the narration of these stories that the spectator will be carried to discover these agri-food, artisanal and anthropological realities, inserted in a discourse of cultural peculiarity rooted not just in territory, but also in the assumption of the value of a language of inter- national knowledge.
Director's notes:
The film has a poetic and reflective narrative style, which aims to highlight a visual truth through the use of a camera that discreetly observes the development of the stories, trying to investigate the deepest layers of reality.
The long silences and the noises of the environment are naturally broken by the working phases, by the excited voice of the protagonists who relate only and exclusively to each other, unaware of the film crew. The excellence of their final products is a direct consequence of their almost vision- ary dedication. The appearance of the real thus emerges from a different perspective; the everyday work of the protagonists is never didactic or academic. Leaving the spectator as a true witnesses of authenticity through the capturing of detail. The entire story is organised to see the fruits of un- predictability, of invention and imagination.

  • Dario Carrarini
    L' eleganza del cibo
  • Dario Carrarini
    L' Eleganza del cibo
  • Ermanno Guida
    Non essere cattivo
  • Sergio Pitzalis
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 18 minutes 8 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    September 1, 2019
  • Production Budget:
    40 EUR
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital, Redcam
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Festa del Cinema di Roma
    October 26, 2019
    MAXXI Contemporary Art
    Other Events
Director - Dario Carrarini