• $22.95

Italianissimo (literally, very very Italian) profiles fifty enticing Italian contributions to culture high and low, from the lofty realm of great ideas to the delicious realities of cuisine, fashion, cinema, and much more—an eclectic mix of the customs, culture, and concepts that embody the essence of Italy. This intimate guide will enlighten and enrich all journeys to Italy, both real and imaginary, and holds a wealth of sophisticated information about such icons as: hand gestures, patron saints, pasta, parmesan, the piazza, the Fiat 500, ex votos, fashion, Neo-realist cinema, authority figures, Pinocchio, the Italian male, the mezzaluna, shoes, opera, the Vespa, the Ferrari, gelato, gondolas, and more.

You'll also find out:

  • Why lines, as we know them, are nonexistent in Italy;
  • Why a string of coral beads is often seen around a baby's wrist;
  • What the unlucky number of Italy is (it's not 13, unless seating guests at a table, when it IS 13—taking into account the outcome of the Last Supper);
  • Why red underwear begins to appear in shops as the New Year approaches, and much, much more.

About the Authors

Graphic designer Louise Fili has received awards from every major design competition, and has work in the permanent collection of the Library of Congress, the Cooper-Hewitt Museum, and the Bibliothèque Nationale. She was also inducted into the Art Directors Hall of Fame.

Lise Apatoff, originally from Chicago, has been living on a farm in the Tuscan countryside north of Florence since 1978. She shares her intimate understanding of Italy as a teacher, travel coordinator and museum lecturer.

Italianissimo: The Quintessential Guide to What Italians Do Best
By Louise Fili and Lise Apatoff

Hardcover; 112 pages.

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