Nevia Togni (2nd from left)
The circus comes to town... in Monaco. It is the 36th International Circus Festival. To celebrate this event, the Carré Doré Art Gallery have brought the splendour and excitement of the Big Top to their walls.
An artist that speaks where of she knows has produced a collection of paintings allowing us a little peep into her soul. I truly believe that you are born an artist. An artist takes shape in many ways. Nevia Togni was born into The Togni Family which is one of the largest Italian circus dynasties still active today. She performed as a trapeze artist and rode the elephants in true circus pomp.
It was a story of love that decided her new direction and Nevia left the circus. She turned her energy and talent to painting a lifetime of memories on canvas. After 25 years, this is the first time we see the collection by Nevia Togni.
Vivid colours emphasise the drama and somewhat expose the dark caricature side of life in the ring. What lies behind the painted smile?
She makes reference to something the Italian film director Frederico Fellini said 'Life is full of clowns'.
When I spoke to Nevia and asked her where she lived she said 'Italy'. Thinking that perhaps she misunderstood my Italian accent, I asked her again as to where in Italy... again she replied 'Italy' and I understood immediately that home was wherever they laid the tent!
Photographs of the exhibition by Nevia Togni at Carré Doré can be seen on Facebook. Also featured at the Carré Doré is artist Igor Akimov.
Footage: The flying trapeze of Togni family in 1953 at Circo Nazionale Togni. In this clip, the triple return pirouette of late Cesare Togni (1924-2008).