Salvatore Ferragamo will restore sculptures in Florence

The fashion house will donate more than 1 million euros

Reading time 3 minutes

Salvatore Ferragamo will contribute more than a million euros to the restoration of sculptures in Piazza della Signoria in Florence. Italian fashion house has already donated funds so that the masters can restore the Fountain of Neptune. Over the next three years, it is planned to restore both copies of the statue of David, one of them is located in the courtyard of the Palazzo Vecchio, and the second – in Piazzale Michelangelo. In addition, the equestrian monument of Cosimo I will be restored, as well as the statues Judith and the Head of Holofernes and Hercules and Cacus.

Fountain of Neptune
The Fountain of Neptune is a fountain in Florence, Italy, situated on the Piazza della Signoria
The Fountain of Neptune is a fountain in Florence, Italy, situated on the Piazza della Signoria

Bartolomeo Ammannati’s Neptune is made of Carrara marble and has the features of Cosimo I de Medici, it overlooks the representation of the two sea monsters Scylla and Charybdis (in Greek mythology, two immortal monsters that assaulted the hero Odysseus and his sailors in the wanderings described in Homer’s Odyssey) and is surrounded by satyrs and sea horses, the fountain was built for the marriage of François 1er de Medici who would in turn become Grand Duke of Tuscany and was the eldest son of Cosimo I.

The statue of David

Michelangelo’s David is one of the masterpieces of the Italian Renaissance. During that period, sculptors such as Donatello, Ghiberti and Verrocchio produced works inspired by the Bible where David was shown after having beheaded Goliath. However, Michelangelo chose to represent the moment before the combat. Young David is ready to strike the giant holding a stone in his right hand with a sling resting on his left shoulder.

There are three copies of Michelangelo’s David in the city. The original one can be found in the Accademia Gallery. The second copy is located in Piazza della Signoria just opposite to the Palazzo Vecchio. The third replica is in the middle of Piazzale Michelangelo.

Judith and Holofernes
A copy stands in Piazza della Signoria, in front of the Palazzo Vecchio
A copy stands in Piazza della Signoria, in front of the Palazzo Vecchio

Judith and Holofernes, completed around 1460 is a masterpiece by Donatello. Under the reign of King Nebuchadnezzar II, there lived in Samaria, present-day Israel, a beautiful widow named Judith. The king’s general, named Holofernes, besieged the city where Judith lived. The situation was critical. Judith dressed in her finest attire and took some liquor and delicacies. She went to see Holophernes. The latter, charmed by her beauty, invited her under his tent. Judith made him drink and, taking advantage of his drunkenness, cut his head. By doing that she terrified the soldiers and saved her city. This precise moment is represented there by the artist.

Hercules and Cacus
Statue of Hercules and Cacus in Piazza Della Signoria in Florence, Italy
Statue of Hercules and Cacus in Piazza Della Signoria in Florence, Italy

When the Medici family (late 14th and 15th centuries) returned from exile in 1530, they instructed Baccio Bandinelli to create the statue of Hercules defeating the giant Cacus. It illustrates the victory of the Medici House. Among the members of the royal family were several dukes, two French queens and four Catholic popes.

Rescue of a rare giraffe species in Africa

Eight West African giraffes have been transferred to the Gadabedja protected area in Niger

Reading time 4 minutes

Until now, there were no giraffes from West Africa in the Gadabedji biosphere reserve in Niger. These animals still need protection. Illegal hunting, climate change and habitat loss all contributed to the decline in population size. According to the Nigerian publication, eight giraffes were moved to the reserve, this is the first such case for the West African subspecies.  

Биосферный заповедник Гадабеджи (Нигер)
Биосферный заповедник Гадабеджи (Нигер)

In accordance with the initiative of the Nigerian authorities, eight giraffes were caught approximately 60 km south-east of the city of Niamey. There, these animals share their habitat with local communities and compete with humans for natural resources. Often, giraffes come into conflict with people who manage their pastures. Because of this, some individuals go to restless areas on the border with Mali. 

Жирафов перевозили в специальных контейнерах
Жирафов перевозили в специальных контейнерах

The animals were placed in enclosures for three weeks to prepare for the upcoming journey in special trailers. Then they were transported to a new place of residence in the central part of Niger. 

According to the Giraffe Conservation Foundation (GCF), over the past 30 years, the number of giraffes has declined throughout the African continent. The West African giraffe subspecies was once common in many countries, including Nigeria, Mali, Mauritania and Senegal, but is now only preserved in Niger. In the nineties of the twentieth century, only 49 individuals remained in the wild, and in 2008 the subspecies was listed in the Red Book of the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) as endangered.    

Западноафриканские жирафы - самый малочисленный подвид
Западноафриканские жирафы – самый малочисленный подвид

The efforts of the Niger Government in collaboration with local and international partners have led to the revival of the West African giraffe. Since 2005, conservation efforts in Niger have also intensified thanks to the Giraffe Conservation Fund (GCF) and the Sahara Foundation for Nature Conservation.   

Currently, the population size has increased to 600 individuals, and last month this subspecies was reduced by the IUCN to the category of “vulnerable”. Environmentalists believe that the relocation of eight giraffes is a key step in the development of Gadabedzhi as the leading reserve in Niger. They hope that this will help revive the population of the West African giraffe.

Fashion Trends of Fall 2018

How to be classy and not come out too extravagant

Reading time 5 minutes

This year designers have decided to put the emphasis on casual clothing. To stay in style, you should just add a couple of items to your wardrobe.

First – clothes with large plaid prints. This kind of prints could be on shirts as well as on pants. The red-and-black scottish plaid print became the most popular variation of these patterns. This season it has been  used in classic wool coat by Michael Kors and in glossy dress by Alice + Olivia. However, if you for any reason do not like red color or you prefer your clothes to be even more colorful you can follow Versace and wear a suit with yellow-and-blue plaid print.

Леопардовые костюмы неоновой расцветки
Carolina Herrera, Jeremy Scott, Tom Ford, R13; Fall Collection 2018

Leopard print has become a byword, so a lot of people tend to be careful with it. Although, designers are not afraid of experimenting, therefore, leopard pattern has burst into fashion in the most unexpected interpretations. Besides leopard coats and trench coats, you can also wear a leopard pencil skirt in grey tones or a yellow leopard collar over your plaid coat. And if these combinations are not audacious enough in collections of American designers, you can find more extravagant outfits, for instance, a leopard suit with neon colors for night parties.

Многослойность - один из главных трендов осени 2018 года
Hermès, Maison Margiela, Balenciaga, Rochas; Fall Collection 2018

After last winter, when Europe got to know the «Siberian Beast» – the weather front which brought almost Russian like frost – overlayered outfits became fashionable. And this fall designers keep following that trend. To stay tuned in fashion, you can get more clothes with overlayered tailoring or use in your outfits a couple of dense fabricated items. There is an option of combining a couple of warm oversized jackets or wearing a drape bulky coat over a thin one. As an example, you can put on a winter coat over a quilted jacket.

The mania for logos has not gone  away, so big letters stay a fashion trend of this fall. It means that you would better off buying some clothes with lettered prints. If you prefer your style to be more minimalistic, you can just embrace bags with mentioned pattern.

В этом сезоне шубы радуют яркостью и свободой
Givenchy, Oscar de la Renta, Carolina Herrera; Fall Collection 2018

Fashion trends of this fall finally made peace between fur lovers and fighters for animal rights. Although, fluffy fur is still construed to be fashionable, it is has to be synthetic. Even Donatella Versace put away her natural furs. Now fur coats can be embellished with colorful applications, ornaments, and wide colored lines. Natural furs cannot allow designers to use similar color range and patterns: bright orange and neon pink lines, vivid purple dots, fluorescent yellow shortcuts. Also, this kind of fur coats is more democratic in price.

This mellow fall is keep surprising us with unexpected designer decisions: dresses with waist cuts , lacquered coats, outfits with two belts over mini-skirts. One thing stays obvious – this fall 2018 is a great time to use your imagination and try unexpected combinations.