Massimo Bottura and Maurizio Cattelan's degree show
The chef and the artist just got honorary degrees. Can you guess which one wore a phone advert on his forehead?
How did you dress for your graduation? Fresh haircut and a mortarboard? How very conventional. The Italian chef, Phaidon author and philanthropist Massimo Bottura just received his honorary degree from the University of Carrara, alongside the Italian artist and fellow Phaidon author Maurizio Catalan.
Buttora and Cattelan are good friends; Massimo’s debut cookbook, Never Trust a Skinny Italian Chef, opened with an interview conducted between the two of them.
Yet at the degree ceremony, it was fairly easily to tell them apart. Bottura wore a gray marl t-shirt, beard and glasses, while Cattelan sported a pin-stripe suit, matching tie, and an advert for the new Huawei P20 Pro smart phone.
That’s right, Cattelan – who has, in the past, brought a live donkey to Frieze and placed fake pigeons in the rafters of the Italian pavilion at the Venice Biennale – had a temporary tattoo applied to his forehead, advertising the new Chinese smartphone, and its accompanying Urban Renaissance competition, which aims to find and improve a neglected urban space with the help of young street artists.
Cattelan, for his part, is also coming to the aid of the artistic community; rather than pocket the money from the phone manufacturer, he has donated his fee to the university, which will use the cash to pay for 20 scholarships.
There’s an important lesson in there, somewhere, for all of us. To find out more about Maurizio get The 21st Century Art Book; about Massimo’s charitable work, get Bread is Gold.