inside the whimsical world of fornasetti’s milan home with director virgilio villoresi
images courtesy of fornasetti




in the late nineteenth century, a typewriter salesman builds a modest family home in the città studi district of milan. in this house, a labyrinth of corridors and rooms, his son piero fornasetti grows up, spending afternoons drawing, flicking through magazines and collecting image cuttings. when still a young man, piero decides to convert the walls of his unassuming family residence into an extraordinary workshop dedicated to his then-emerging creative craft. the typewriter salesman could not have known then that the fornasetti house would become a magical place filled with a wunderkammer of delicate treasures, antique furniture, paintings, prints, collections of colored glass, small sculptures and books.


today, barnaba — piero’s son — has embraced and enhanced the heritage of the house, collecting and displaying his father’s most beloved artworks throughout each of the ornately-embellished rooms. barnaba has opened the doors of the fornasetti house to italian director virgilio villoresi, who tells its story through a whimsical stop-motion video. the imaginative universe villoresi has created for the film is free from gravity — objects like fornasetti’s famous plates bearing the face of italian opera singer lina cavalieri dance to music composed by cesare picco; butterflies break free from a meticulously illustrated table and fly daintily through the air; a hypnotizing wall of mirrors tips over and the living room is turned upside down. enter the artistic, whimsical world of fornasetti through the video ‘welcome home‘ below. 



casa fornasetti
video courtesy of fornasetti

paper butterflies break free from the illustrated table to fly around the room 

fornasetti’s famous plates bearing variations of the face of lina cavalieri dance to music

a red feather floats around an illustrated fornasetti desk 

the drawing of the moon comes alive and sticks its tongue out to the video’s viewers 

a tile with the image of lina cavalieri’s face as a clock is animated in the video

one of the paper butterflies lands on an illustrated tile 

a wall of mirrors tips over and turns the room upside down

a still from the making-of shows director virgilio villoresi placing paper butterflies into the frame

the stop motion video was filmed using an eclectic mix of handmade materials and props 

barnaba fornasetti and virgilio villoresi discuss the project while inside the home