Few things make me happier than my collection of Italian tins, which I have found in the far-flung reaches of Emilia-Romagna, Tuscany, Italian Ebay and Great Barrington, Massachusetts. I started finding them in Italian flea markets over thirty years ago. Some are ornate in an Art Nouveau (or Stile Liberty
) manner, while others have an Art Deco aesthetic.
I gravitate towards the ones with decorative typography and particularly those with dimensional typefaces. The tins once contained everything from powder (for both face and gun) to tomato paste, chocolates, peppermints and biscotti (for bambini grandi e piccoli
.) Now they fill up shelves in my studio, where they provide endless stimulation and inspiration.