A collector's perspective: Mimma Viglezio
15 jul 2014 by Nur El Shami
Mimma Viglezio is a writer and creative consultant based in London. She regularly contributes to publications such as i-D and Business of Fashion (BoF). Viglezio, formerly Executive Vice President of Global Communications at Gucci Group, now works indepently advising companies, boards and CEOs on matters related to organisation, strategy, product and communications. In this interview, she shares with art:i:curate her perspective as an art collector.
AIC: You have worked in public relations and communications for major fashion houses and luxury brands. Do you feel art is considered a luxury good?
MV: Well, art is better than a luxury good because it is also an investment. Like luxury products, it serves the purpose of giving pleasure to the owner, but contrary to a dress or a pair of shoes it does not lose appeal or value with time.
AIC: In what ways do you feel galleries and dealers should be communicating works of art to their audiences?
MV: Galleries and dealers talk to their customers, their collectors and their artists only. However, they also organise shows that are for everyone who wants to see them, therefore, in a way, they are accessible to all. Museums have the duty to talk to everyone more than commercial institutions. I nevertheless like the idea of powerful dealers to launch talent more often rather than chase the already established artists that are worth money and bring them fame. I utterly love and respect the galleries who are able to take risks with someone unknown they believe in.
AIC: What does art collecting mean to you?
MV: Collecting for me is nothing more than the act of acquiring something I love. I love art that strikes a cord in me, that corresponds to my idea of beauty but also has a meaning. It is very personal and it does not matter if it is understood by me only. I could not buy art that has a meaning in history if its aesthetic does not appeal to me. I can only live with objects that are, to my eyes, incredibly beautiful. I am obsessed with beauty and can't possibly do without it. Collecting is never meant as a means to make money for me. On the other end, I know that it is never wasted money and that is reassuring.
AIC: What is your personal connection to the visual arts? What inspired you to begin collecting?
MV: Interest in history, culture, talent, beauty. Again, the works that I buy, I buy because they make me happy. The first time I could afford a piece of art I felt incredibly successful, strong and blessed. From then on it never stopped. Whenever I have some extra money to spend, I buy art. It is not an egotistic trip, it has to be "love at first sight".
AIC: Describe your art collection in three words.
MV: Consistent, beautiful, small.
Lilies, Irving Penn, part of Mimma Viglezio's personal collection
AIC: Do you think having a refined taste in art makes one fashionable?
MV: NO. But it is what people think. Art collecting is very fashionable in the fashion industry. Some of it is vanity, but it is also a fact that fashionable people tend to have a special eye for beauty. But as money does not always mean taste, so a refined taste in art does not mean fashionable. All can leave separately and together likewise.
AIC: Top 3 picks from articurate.net.