I met Fabiano Trionfi for the first time some time ago and immediately recognised him as a thoroughbred artist, brilliant and unpredictable. Despite his silent reserve, he vibrates with an unstoppable and surprising creative capacity, because his jewels, which are completely unusual and special, are real sculptures in which he loves to combine bronze and stones, often of great value, because he enjoys the unusual combination of poor metals and important stones.
These are unique pieces with incredible shapes, sometimes softly sinuous, sometimes linear and geometric, in different sizes, dedicated to women with strong personalities, the only ones who can wear these ‘extreme’ creations (because they are outside the canons of classical aesthetics) with the necessary naturalness and self-confidence. In fact, the woman who inspires Fabiano likes to attract attention and appreciates the mix of originality and harmony that characterises his entire production, which includes rings, bracelets, earrings, necklaces and belts with special buckles.
One of the most beautiful things I have seen is a necklace pendant, with a large drop-cut hydrothermal quartz in the centre, mounted on rose bronze and silver together with white sapphires. It is a large object, in which the intense, luminous green of the stone is emphasised by the metalwork, which has been deliberately left rough.
The ring collection is also extremely rich. There is the ‘Tagli’ ring, in yellow gold and white diamonds, a band carved with crisscrossed grooves, to look like a slightly curled silk stole, with diamonds resting here and there in the folds.
The one on which a “Prasiolite” (green amethyst) is mounted, carré cut and a very high bezel in burnished silver, which enhances the hand and has the charm of the ancient seals.
Not to mention the surprising and very modern interpretation of the classic band with three or more stones, in which the upper part of the frame is left open, in pink or yellow bronze, with peridot, aqua marina and blue London topaz.
The bracelets, on the other hand, have lines reminiscent of classical antiquity, revisited with a dreamlike attitude: tall rigid cuffs with bas-reliefs or thin weaves of metal such as silver, yellow bronze or pink bronze.
The same approach is used for the base of the ‘Cradle’ necklace, in yellow bronze with a scaramish pearl in the centre. It is a rigid semicircle, open at the top and forged to look like a ribbon of fabric: the pearl is attached to the base, facing upwards, defying gravity and all traditional canons.
Fabiano has both an artistic and literary background: he attended art school, graduated with a degree in Literature with a focus on history, is a painter with a strong preference for the abstract (which allows him to maintain freedom of expression evident even in the visionary inspiration of his jewellery) as well as a sculptor and goldsmith. When you enter his atelier-shop Ritrov_Arti (www.ritrovarti.it) in the centre of Rome, in Via Federico Cesi (Piazza Cavour), you are already struck: the pieces of furniture, mostly hand-forged by him, have shapes and colours never seen before, from the iron and copper chairs to the oxidised copper arches that, starting from the walls, adorn the ceiling, after being treated in such a way as to obtain such particular oxidation that turns to turquoise.
The mirrors and displays in the showcases have always been designed and built by Fabiano’s own hands, as have the copper chandeliers. The artist’s creativity is therefore expressed in many fields: from painting to photography, to ironwork requiring the technique and skill of the blacksmith, to the art of goldsmithing in various materials: bronze, silver, gold, combined with precious and semi-precious stones. The chosen technique is the ancient “lost wax” casting technique. It has been used since 3500 B.C. (Bronze Age), it consists of shaping wax, which is transformed into metal using a special process while remaining absolutely faithful to the original model. In fact, the wax model is covered with liquid plaster, which is then placed in a special oven and hardens, allowing the wax inside to evaporate completely. The space left by the wax, in the now rigid shell of the plaster, is filled with a cast of molten metal such as gold, bronze, silver or platinum which will acquire the desired shape.
Fabiano plays with wax and models it directly with his hands, starting with the idea he wishes to realise, for which he often does not even make a preliminary drawing. Thus, his creativity is nourished by a playful and imaginative aspect, which explains how he manages to forge jewellery that is both unpredictable and highly valued by the wearer. Just look at the pendant in pink bronze and silver with a “Prasiolite” (green amethyst) full of light, set within a frame of curls sculpted so well that they seem to fall softly, or the belts with buckles in yellow or pink bronze, decorated with motifs reminiscent of abstract canvases and often embellished with stones such as blue agate.
Moreover, combining a few of his rings on the same hand creates an effect of sumptuousness and great originality at the same time, as they are pieces that immediately catch the eye but always remain in harmony with each other.
Fabiano’s main desire, which lies at the heart of his drive as an artist, is to surprise those who enter his atelier and be asked ‘why’ he makes his creative choices. The emotion he can read in the eyes of those who admire his jewellery for the first time or wear it and realise how giving it is the most important part of his work. Therefore, any woman wishing to choose creations that do not exist elsewhere, either for the artistic inspiration from which they are born or for the use of materials and stones combined unusually, can find in Fabiano’s atelier what best represents her and suits her particularity, even requesting personalised variations.
Enjoy even more @ www.ritrovarti.it
Edit by Maria Teresa Fonzi