Wine and Art | Il Borro

Wine and Art

Wine and art
in the Ferruccio Ferragamo collection

Wine and Art Gallery

Drinking wine has always been a part of the vicissitudes of mankind since most ancient times. Due to the symbolic strength and the fact that it unites and is celebrative, wine has always been considered a precious gift, a gift of the gods. As powerful as a medicine that lessons all fears and creates oblivion, wine is drunk as an almost religious ritual. A marvelous drink with a seductive color, it has the ability to overcome daily fatigue and to make a man feel like a god. Nonetheless, like with all powerful medicines one should never abuse of it: it can make it possible to feel the ecstasy of a mystic union but at the same it can destroy those who are incapable of controlling its inebriating side effects.

The history of the vines and the wine can be a privileged observation point for an understanding of Greek and Roman mythology, Christian tradition and Muslim culture as seen in the works of art of great masters such as Mantegna and Rubens, Durer or Lucas von Leyden.

The incisions of Dionysus

The majority of the incisions speak of Dyonysus in Greek and Roman mythology, creator of wine. Originally the god of work, fertility and order, Dyonisus is venerated as a divinity related to drunkenness and intoxication, to folly and to the orgiastic cult of the bacchanalia. Within this one person there is a combination of demoniac and angelic, destructive and regenerative features: at times portrayed as obese and lascivious; at other times seen as a young athlete; he may appear surrounded by a fauna that seeks Eros or by an exasperated bacchanalia; in the rituals dedicated to him, the animals are torn to pieces and the pieces are eaten raw and yet, thanks to him, life is joyfully regenerated.

Baccus and the divine nectar

His gift to man is the divine nectar and the diabolic liquor; it can be a consolation during the worst of pains or trigger the most tumultuous passions, it can alienate the world or save lives. This is the way Baccus should be seen, a common mortal won over by the drink he himself has created. The collection of incisions and their many varied representations on “ways of drinking”, make it possible to experience even if only for an instant ancient traditions and far away cultures.