As part our our Grazie series we’re taking a closer look at the most exciting artists, designers, chefs and creatives inspired by Italian style. Architect and interior designer Elisabetta Rizzato is the creative mind behind ITALIANBARK - a travel and design blog showcasing the best work inspired by and made in Italy. We fell in love with Elisabetta’s infectious passion for Italian design and culture, so much so that we’ve asked her to share her inspirations with us in her monthly articles for Peroni Nastro Azzurro. We spoke to Elisabetta about her favourite Italian designers and Italy’s hidden gems.
Tell us about yourself and your work.
I'm an Italian creative, architect & interior designer, working as freelance architect for onsite (I'm based in north-east Italy) and online clients.
In 2013 I launched the blog ITALIANBARK with the aim of collecting daily design and travel inspirations, in order to keep myself inspired and hopefully to inspire other people, with a special care towards Italian design. My virtual space revealed to be the right space to combine my design profession and my enthusiasm for photography, graphics and web, and soon it grew to something more: bringing me many new collaborations and opportunities, and a creative job as a design content writer and freelance design trendsetter, which now goes along with my "architect" job and is in constant evolution.
How does Italy inspire your work?
With its beauty, which is found in its historical heritage and in its natural landscape. But also in the many hidden small treasures you can find everywhere in Italy: small villages, artisans workshops, small creative hubs - it's a continuous discovery.
Who are your Italian style heroes? Who are your favourite Italian artists?
When I think of Italian style the first person that comes to my mind is Giorgio Armani: with the clean and tailored lines that feature in his designs he is my icon in terms of style. Thinking as an architect, of course Renzo Piano and his high-tech architectures: I love them all, from the ‘70s Centre Pompidou in Paris to the more modern Shard in London.
What do you think sets Italian style apart from the rest of the world?
We have a genetic attitude to be elegant without excesses.
Where is one of the most unique Italian locations you have worked and what did you love about it?
I recently completed an interior and branding project for an Italian restaurant in Perth, Australia (with my colleague Simona Nurcato). This is quite an unusual location as it is completely on the opposite side of the world…and we did it online!
What’s your favourite restaurant?
I love Venice (and Veneto) osterie - traditional small restaurants with a cosy location, where you can eat great food and drink good wine. Alla Vedova in Venice, for example, with its polpettas and warm interior, is one of them!
Where’s the best place to shop?
Thinking locally, I love to shop in Verona, a beautiful city near me where you can find many interesting shops without the noise and crowd of Milan. Thinking outside Italy, I love London’s street markets (Spitalfields and Brick Lane are my favourites).
I do shop a lot online as well (for my job, I spend a lot of timesearching and browsing on the internet). Etsy is a great place for craft and handmade shopping, while I love Society6 for finding new artists’ works.
Which part of Italy would you recommend for a vacation?
As everybody probably knows about Tuscany’s beauty, about the Italian beaches and the historical cities such as Venice, Florence and Rome, I'd like to recommend visiting the Dolomites. Both during summer and in winter, this part of the Alps is amazing. I spent holidays when I was a child in a small village called San Martino di Castrozza which is really lovely.