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Italy is synonymous with style throughout the world. Their style icon status applies to everything from fashion and furniture to food and lifestyle. Along with style, art is also a term often associated with Italy. But what do we know about the Belpaese when not talking about canvases and fabrics, but about flowers? We discussed floristry in Italy with Massimo Iodice, event planner and owner of Flover, one of the most exclusive shops in Naples.
Italian floristry in the past
‘The truth is that until recently, Italy hadn’t realised its full potential,’ Massimo Iodice tells us. ‘When you walked through the streets of Milan or Rome, you didn’t see boutiques with flowers and plants, with original creations, like you would see in the streets of Amsterdam or on certain boulevards in Paris. And maybe that was so because the market didn’t demand it so much’ suggests Iodice. ‘The Italian flower market was mainly busy with funerals or events. And often it is the demand that creates the supply’.
The wind has changed and these days, Italy is very much appreciated in the floral world. ‘We have developed our own style’ continues Iodice. ‘Flowers are something alive, and many of my colleagues and I try to make art out of these wonderful and fragile creatures, the stems, petals and leaves that we deal with every day.’ ‘We try to create our compositions in a natural way that express our own stories as well as the stories from our different regions.’ he concludes. ‘And very often we can display these creations in the structures, palaces, villas that clients choose as the backdrop for their events. Places of extraordinary beauty, often overlooking the sea or nestled in a beautiful landscape. This combination is often amazing and many people, especially non-Italians, are beginning to choose our country with increasing emphasis as the place for important celebrations.’
Flover is Flower Lover
Massimo Iodice was born in 1970 and grew up in Naples. He is now a point of reference for many colleagues and agencies who choose his art for their own most prestigious clients. Massimo has already organised more than a thousand events and still spends most of his time in his laboratory. But why? “Because I don’t work with flowers, I live with flowers. I feel comfortable among flowers. And I need to have them around me all the time and always meet new ones. That’s why, besides local growers, of which there are many in my area, Dutch supply is very important. Holland is “the market”. It gives you the opportunity to choose, to not to be satisfied which then demands more study and research. In a word, to grow”. And like him, the Italian florists’ ability to invent a new season is growing day by day.
We kindly asked Massimo to create an inspirational Freesia arrangement for us. Freesia is a common and widely used product for florists, especially at this time of the year and often at a good price. However, the Freesia is actually a very special flower. “I love Freesias because it is a flower from the South, says Massimo Iodice. They are born in the sun and live in the sun. They know how to stay closed and how to suddenly explode with colour. An ecstasy of perfume, but a discreet one, almost silent. And do you know why I like them? It’s because of their history. They are ancient flowers, yet never studied by botanists. They are not in any archive, as if they have never existed. A sign of mystery. Something new to discover. That’s why I always put them in the bouquets of young lovers.
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