Collective Creativity Relay
The collection reflects the variety, wealth and complexity of contemporary creative thinking. Artists, designers, architects as well as musicians, film makers, illustrators, intellectuals and philosophers have enriched the collection, filling the notebook, page after page, with their thoughts, sketches, images, often transforming it into a completely different artefact, maintaining the soul and the essence. In extreme cases the only thing left of the notebook is the skin, in other cases it has been absorbed into the work of art, it has been burnt, torn apart, rebuilt, regenerated. The notebook is the device, the limit, the origin. The collection started with the Detour and myDetour projects in 2006 and has grown exponentially over the last few years. Since 2010 the AtWork initiative also contributes to the collection’s growth.
We are committed to showcasing the collection at international art events, festivals, exhibitions, and Biennales to give as much visibility to the artists as possible.
Currently the collection holds close to 1,000 pieces and is divided into 3 archives:
Detour is a small piece of the Moleskine journey, where interlacing stories merge. Curated by Raffaella Guidobono, this travelling group show features notebook creations by internationally recognized artists, architects, film directors, graphic designers, illustrators and writers. Some works contain extensive stories; others are turned into pieces of contemporary art and design.
Detour events have already taken place in London (2006), New York (2007), Paris (2008), Berlin (2008), Istanbul (Spring 2009), Tokyo (Fall 2009), Venice (Summer 2010), Shanghai (Fall 2010) and Beijing (2013).
Browse the notebooks on the Detour Video Gallery.
myDetour is a Moleskine project dedicated to all lovers of painting, photography, illustration and writing. It is an opportunity to share your creative experience, on- and off-line: you decorate your Moleskine notebook, drop it in the myDetour collection boxes and participate in the selections. A Jury will choose the most inventive notebooks collected in each city, which will be showcased in the next stop and be published on the online gallery. The author of the one single most remarkable notebook for each city is invited to the next opening event.
myDetour installations often run alongside the Detour project, a travelling collection of notebooks by authors of international renown.
Visit the myDetour Galleries: Venice 2012, Shanghai, Venice 2010, Tokyo, San Francisco, Istanbul, Berlin, Paris, New York, 5×5 Dakar.
AtWork is an itinerant educational format, conceived by lettera27 and Simon Njami, that uses the creative process to stimulate critical thinking and debate among its participants. It contributes to building a new generation of thinkers. The key element of AtWork is a workshop conducted by an artist or a curator on a chosen topic. The topic stimulates collective discussion and a personal self-reflection on issues such as identity, culture and community. As a final output of the workshop each student produces a personalized notebook, which fixes the process of self-reflection triggered by the workshop. The produced notebooks are exhibited in an art show, co- curated by the students themselves. The donated notebooks become part of the collection.
Visit the website to see all the notebooks and where they have been exhibited: www.at-work.org
A dedicated on-line platform lettera27collection.org was created to host the collection archives. Its objectives are:-
-To preserve, develop, promote and exhibit (both online and offline) the largest collection of artists’ notebooks of our times that reflects contemporary collective creativity.
-To promote the talent of each of the participants in the projects whose work enriches the collection, as well as disseminating the culture of sharing and gifting that distinguishes it
– To contribute significantly to fundraising for the Foundation through loans, initiatives and events that can make the most of its attractive potential