Valerio Marini

Like a forbidden fruit, the olive will be the center of attention in Italian artist’s Valerio Marini’s latest exhibition, appropriately titled “Erotic Oil.”

The exhibition will take place at the Olio Officina Food Festival in Milan, an event developed by journalist Luigi Caricato and devoted to the promotion and celebration of extra virgin olive oil.

Born in Gallarate, near Varese, in 1950, Marini considers himself a humorist-illustrator. Cartoonist for the Il Giornale until 1994, then for Italia Oggi and La Gazzetta dello Sport and many others, he’s been collaborating with Olio Officina since it began in 2010.

Marini makes our imaginations’ run wild as we try to imagine how olive oil and eroticism might be linked, but as any great artist would have it, the simple innuendos and tantalizing provocations help us make our own decisions on the connection. The options are never ending.


Valerio Marini

The inventiveness of Valerio Marini captures attention with suggestive illustrations containing subtle clues such as using the shape of the customary blue olive oil tasting glass and transforming it into the derriere of a lady seen from behind. This particular piece of work goes hand in hand with his catchphrase for the exhibition “Oil feeds our Eros.”

In another of Marini’s witty artworks, which will be present at the exhibition, women’s lingerie are hanging on a washing line tied between the branches of two olive trees. He comes up with every possibility to evoke the olive as a sensual fruit. From the olive tree, the fruit itself and to the oil it produces, for Marini it all falls under the category of seduction.

At the second edition of Olio Officina in 2013, Marini presented illustrations made at the time celebrating Eros. Now for the fourth edition, with the theme “Oil feeds our Eros,” he offers more sensual illustrations.

In Olio Officina magazine two of his cartoons have been published, using the phrase: “We are just at the preliminaries…” leading us to wonder where the artist will go next.

The exhibition will take place at the Olio Officina Food Festival from January 22 to 24, 2015.

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