550 hand-painted bottles for a project that combines art, young talents empowerment and solidarity.

What could be more delicate, natural and joyful than the encounter between the birds that appear on the labels of Castellare di Castellina wines and the creativity of the young students of the Brera Art School in Milan? From this encounter was born the limited edition I Sodi di S. Niccolò – Brera unveiled on 4 October in Milan, at the headquarters of the high school, by Paolo Panerai, founder of Castellare di Castellina, the historic Chianti Classico winery, by the oenologist Alessandro Cellai and the Principal of the Institute Emilia Ametrano.

On display, a selection of 550 bottles of different sizes (0.75 L, 1.5 L, 3L and 9 L), personalized by over 500 students with a carousel of hand-painted flowers, leaves, animals and natural elements, in perfect harmony with the iconic bird that appears on the label, depicted by the artist and ornithologist John Gould, who lived in the Victorian era. 550 one-of-a kind bottles, each different from the other, containing the 2019 vintage of I Sodi di S. Niccolò, the Historical Supertuscan of Castellare di Castellina based on Sangiovese and Balck Malvasia, both native vines of the Chianti Classico area.

Castellare di Castellina_I Sodi di S.Niccolò 2019 Ed Lim. Brera_standard con astuccio

Of these unique masterpieces, the jury chose 4 bottles (one for each format) for the creativity of the decoration and the richness of details, in addition to the 5 most beautiful designs that embellish the cases of the 0.75 L: the authors of these work of arts were awarded by Paolo Panerai during the presentation. The 9-litre format, decorated with a splendid phoenix, will be auctioned at Christie’s London on 30 November 2023 and the proceeds will be donated entirely to the non-profit Dynamo Camp association which offers recreational therapy programs to children and adolescents suffering from illnesses severe or chronic. Furthermore, part of the proceeds from the sale of the other formats will also go to charity to the same association.

This project,” explains Paolo Panerai, “was born from an unplanned, and therefore even more magical, encounter that took place in 2022, during the week of La Vendemmia in Via MonteNapoleone, when the boutiques of the Milanese fashion district each host a cellar. On that occasion, the director of the boutique in partnership with Castellare di Castellina had asked some young students from the Brera High School to personalize the bottles of our wines live, taking inspiration from the labels that reproduce every year a little bird in danger of extinction, to underline that in the vineyards of Castellare only organic products are used. It was then that the principal of the Brera High School, Mrs Emilia Ametrano, in the most spontaneous way, suggested having the students decorate a limited edition of I Sodi di S. Niccolò. The idea immediately thrilled everyone, because it became an opportunity to allocate the proceeds to a charity initiative. Through the art of these young talents, we want to send a message of solidarity”.

The I Sodi di S. Niccolò – Brera project was conceived for our students to create relationships between a leading wine company and art”, underlines the Principal of The Brera Art High School, Emilia Ametrano. “The study and selection of the birds first, the attention to detail afterwards, through the use of very small brushes and colors of advanced conception, helped our students, guided by their teachers of the artistic disciplines, to tackle a difficult technique: glass painting. The latter, born in Europe towards the end of the 14th century, then became one of the favorite techniques of illustrious artists, such as Vassilij Kandinsky and Franz Marc, who excelled in the development of an art that brought together great abstraction and realism. Our students enthusiastically welcomed the idea to decorate the bottles of Castellare di Castellina wine by proposing unique and extremely refined graphic solutions”.

The students of the Brera Art School awarded:
Aurora Sartori (9 liter bottle), Manuela Fasoli (3 liter bottle), Martina Zottola (1.5 liter bottle), Leda Bossi (0.75 liter bottle), Giorgia Prado Caballero (case design), Gabriele Banfi (case design), Alice Tosi (case design), Alessandra Miravalle (case design), Maya Montini (case design).

I would like to thanks Mr. Paolo Panerai, friend and supporter of Dynamo Camp, who has chosen us as beneficiaries of this initiative, born during a historic event in favor of our programs for children with serious or chronic pathologies and their families” says Serena Porcari, CEO of Fondazione Dynamo Camp ETS. “It was exciting to learn about the work of the students of the Art School and we are grateful to all the actors involved in this project”.


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