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From 5 to 13 October at Fiere di Parma

Mercanteinfiera, the Fiere di Parma international exhibition of antiques, modern antiques, design and vintage collectibles, is an increasingly “fusion” event. Protagonists of the 38th edition are the Villa Foscarini Rossi Shoes Museum of the LVMH Group and the BDC Art Gallery in Parma, owned by Lucia Bonanni ad Mauro del Rio, curators of the two collateral exhibitions. On the one hand, stylists such as Dior, Kenzo, Yves Saint Laurent and Nicholas Kirkwood highlighted by the far-sightedness of the entrepreneur Luigino Rossi, the Muse-um’s founder. On the other, masters of the visual language such as Ghirri, Sottsass, Jodice, as well as the paparazzi. With Lino Nanni and Elio Sorci, we will dive into the years of the exuberant Dolce Vita.

(Parma, 30 September 2019) – At the beginning there were” pianelle”, or “chopines”, worn by both aristocratic women and commoners to protect their feet from mud and dirt. They could be as high as 50 cm (but only for the richest ladies), while four centuries later Mari-lyn Monroe would build her image on a relatively very modest 11-cm peep toe heel. For Yves Saint Laurent the perfect stride required a 9-cm heel. This was too high for the Swinging Sixties of London and Twiggy, when ballerinas were the footwear of choice.

Whether high, low, with a 9 or 11cm heel, shoes have always been the best-loved accesso-ry of fashion victims and many others and they are the protagonists of the collateral exhi-bition “In her Shoes. A walk through the history of footwear” (Pav. 4) at Mercanteinfiera, Fiere di Parma, from 5 to 13 October.

An all-female itinerary that is a journey through time and taste. It starts from the shoes with pattens worn by late 17th century Venetian noblewomen and ends with Donna Karan sandals – the model that was worn by Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct – or the Celine surrealist shoes (S/S 2013) with sculpted toes. Also, on display are the Christian Lacroix theatrical, sensual and opulent sandals which evoke a torero atmosphere. Visitors will be able to admire Kenzo’s multi-colour creation and, for the first time after the restoration work by the Milan company Open Care Art Services, a rare 1969 Swarovski encrusted model designed by Marc Bohan for Dior.

Altogether a collection of about sixty models and twenty stylists: Yves Saint Laurent, Anne Klein, Calvin Klein, Emilio Pucci, Fendi, Givenchy Loewe, Nicholas Kirkwood, Porsche De-sign, Richard Tyler, Ungaro and Vera Wang.

The exhibition is organized in collaboration with the Villa Foscarini Rossi Shoes Museum of the LVMH group.

By contrast, the visual and universal language of photography is the protagonist of the second collateral exhibition, “Bonanni Del Rio Collection, the Italian choice” (Pav. 4). Sixty shots for an all-Italian photographic display from the private collection of the exhibition curators, Lucia Bonanni and Mauro del Rio of the BDC Art Gallery in Parma.

Massimo Vitali’s beaches, Luigi Ghirri’s poetic, intimate eye, Sottsass’ s perspective on the planet in his drawings about the fate of humankind, together with Mimmo Jodice, Ugo Mu-las, Olivo Barbieri, Mario Giacomelli and Nino Migliori. Also, on display is the work of the paparazzi who made it possible for mere mortals to taste the exuberant vitality of the Dol-ce Vita years.

Thus, in the shots by Lino Nanni, Elio Sorci, Pierluigi Praturlon, Marcello Geppetti and Cristoforo we find Alain Delon, Clint Eastwood, and a very young Catherine Deneuve, Jane Fonda, Anita Ekberg and Liz Taylor. Glamorous pictures as well as shots of everyday life, like the one of Sophia Loren immortalized in 1960s on a small balcony in Rome.

The exhibition includes photographs by Gian Paolo Barbieri, Cesare Monti, Elisabetta Catalano, Guglielmo Coluzzi, Mario Cresci, Franco Fontana, Marcello Geppetti, Gianfranco Gorgoni, Luca Greguoli, Roberto Masotti, Pierluigi Praturlon, Tazio Secchiaroli, and Mas-simo Vitali, just to mention a few.

Antiques, modern antiques, design and collectibles continue, however, to be the undisput-ed trademarks of Mercanteinfiera: the whole of art history from the 17th to the 19th cen-tury will be featured in the 45 square metres of its exhibition area, together with iconic pieces of design masters such as Albini, Iosa Ghini, Fornasetti, Gio Ponti, Mendini and the silverware designed by Lino Sabattini, craftsman of dreams.

A journey through taste that will include Art Deco style through the work of Charles Schneider, owner of one of the greatest glass factories of the early 20th century. He in-vented a lively, extraordinary red-orange colour that he named “tango”, favoured bright colours and striking yellows, and introduced ahead of time, well before the Second World War, the colour harmonies of modern decoration.
Did you know that the oscillations of the most famous pendulum clock in the world – Big Ben – are regulated by a penny? This and other interesting facts will be told by Chris McKay, the world’s most prominent expert on turret clocks during a public meeting at Mercanteinfiera on October 13 from 11am to 12 noon. The meeting is organized with AI-SOR – Italian Association of Clock Making Scholars.

In order to help collectors and enthusiasts protect artworks such as paintings, bronzes, and silver, for the first time Fiere di Parma will make the Fingerprint Authentication Sys-tem available to the public. The service, the result of the collaboration between the Ar-chaeometric Studies Centre, Ars Mensurae and La Sapienza University of Rome, offers an innovative anti-counterfeit method based on an actual digital footprint obtained through X-rays.

The virtual furnishings market will be represented by IntOndo (, with great expertise in vintage (Pav. 4), and by Antico Antico (, which has been a Fiere di Parma partner since July 2019. Through Antico Antico the exhibition in Viale delle Esposizioni aims to consolidate its position vis-a-vis the new target that purchases design and works of art with a click. Once again, the Esperto Risponde Service will make expert advice available at the weekends (Pav. 4).

The fairytale-like universe of Archi&Parchi, the section of Mercanteinfiera (Pav. 5) dedi-cated to antique garden furnishings, returns this autumn.

In line with its evocative and relaxing vocation, Archi&Parchi will transform into a won-derful garden of camellias and its main theme will be “Tea time.” The star of this display will be Camellia Sasanqua, a flower of Asian origin from which a tea with an intense and slightly spiced flavour is obtained. Visitors will be able to taste this noble beverage, loved by more or less unexpected celebrities such as Boy George, Ozzy Osbourne, Mick Jagger and Helen Mirren. The exhibition, curated by the landscape architect Silva Ghirelli, in col-laboration with nurseryman Paolo Zacchera, will gather over 20 species of Camellia in a blaze of colours.

Ilaria Dazzi, Brand Manager of Mercanteinfiera: “the best time of our life”. I am stealing this line from the poet Cardarelli to convey the essence of the 38th edition, which brings together the threads of the work we started years ago. To the important partnerships of the past we have now added new collaborations with the Villa Foscarini Rossi Museum and the Bonanni del Rio Art Gallery, which represent a new step for us. The step that leads us to the long-awaited 2020, the opportunity for Parma, Capital of Culture, to show itself in all its greatness and its ability to create synergies. Synergies in which Mercanteinfiera is a symbol both of tradition and of capacity for renewal.”


Antonella Maia
Mobile number 349 +39 4757783

Villa Foscarini Rossi Shoes Museum of the LVMH group
The Stra Museum, founded in 1995, is the brainchild of Luigino Rossi, a footwear manufacturer. Today it holds the most representative models (1,350 on display and 18,000 in storage) produced by the Rossimoda shoe factory, where craftsmanship and flair – in over seventy years of business, in collaboration with the most prestigious brands – have given shape to the aesthetic creativity of prominent European and American stylists.

BDC Art Gallery – Bonanni Del Rio (Parma)
BDC is an acronym that identifies a Parma collectors couple, Lucia Bonanni and Mauro Del Rio. C stands for Catalogue and not for Collection. Their location is not a mere space but rather headquarters open to the city: a deconsecrated 17th-century church in which all kinds of events take place: concerts, DJ sets, exhibitions, parties and literary meetings – different, enterprising and innovative ways of making art.

12-19 October 2024 | 10.00 - 19.00
October 18th 2024 | 10:00 - 17:00 BUYERS:
10-11 October 2024 | 8.00 - 19.00

Online Ticket: €12
On site ticket: €15

Fiere di Parma
Viale delle Esposizioni, 393A
43126 Parma, Italia