La Lanterna restaurant is not only one of the best examples of Italian cuisine in the region but also one of the finest in the country; Italian daily newspaper La Stampa even dared to label it ‘the English temple of Italian cuisine’. So, I was honoured when owner and head chef, Giorgio Alessio, and his interior designer Jan Bee Brown (also a distinguished artist and theatre designer) asked me to help play a part in the refurbishing of his restaurant by designing some glass panels. With La Lanterna now back in full swing—I wanted to see how the new designs had acclimatised to their surroundings—and was greeted by Giorgio clutching handfuls of fresh mint.
The brief was to create artwork that reflected Georgio’s home town of Piedmont, Italy, and his now adopted home of Scarborough. The panels form part of the partition between the restaurant’s two dining areas, the theme of one which focussed on Piedmont, and the other Scarborough. I designed imagery based on Scarborough’s seascapes, and Piedmont’s Mulberry trees, and in particular the pollarded trees represented so beautifully by the artist Mario Pavese, a friend of Georgio’s. The glass panels are installed back to back, and one can be seen through the other, so I designed them to complement each other. The lines of the receding Piedmont landscape echo the horizontal lines of Scarborough’s receding sands, and the merging of the two sets of imagery symbolises the emotional merging of Georgio’s two home towns.
Great to have a natter too about seasonal fayre and inspired after hearing about his early morning schlepps to the fish markets.
Above is a selection of images which illustrate how the glass panels look in situ.