Valentino Monticello

ArtistValentino Monticello
Paper Size (W x H)24 x 19 ins
Edition Size195
Price £240.00 Excluding VAT

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Carmen is the best loved of Georges Bizet’s operas, and the last that he was to write. Bizet spent two years writing his masterpiece; he may have considered his efforts to have been in vain, as the first performance of the opera in March 1875 was met with an unenthusiastic reception at the Opéra-Comique in Paris. His greatest work condemned as shameful and immoral, Bizet succumbed to a heart attack just three months later. It was only after the composer’s death that Carmen came to be appreciated fully.

The opera boasts some of Bizet’s most complex and tuneful music, its rich orchestral palette superbly complementing Prosper Mérimée’s captivating plot. This story is now familiar: Carmen, a gypsy, seduces the hitherto virtuous Don José, dragging him ever deeper into degeneracy before abandoning him for the dashing bullfighter Escamillo. Desperate, Don José murders Carmen, before giving himself up to the authorities. This stunning work of art is produced, in accordance with the artist’s customary technique, using only the labels taken from bottles of fine wine. All the wines used here emanate from Andalusia, so as to add to the Spanish atmosphere of the scene. The picture depicts the start of the second act, at the tavern of Lillas Pastia. A group of soldiers is drinking, while gypsies play guitars and dance, with Carmen joining the revelry along with her two friends. The scene is given added import by the arrival of Escamillo, fresh from a bullfighting success in Granada.

The print is hand numbered and accompanied by a certificate signed by the Master Printer and bearing a matching number to the print.

About the Artist

Valentino Monticello

Valentino Monticello has three passions: wine, opera, and art. An exceptional talent, Monticello cuts and shapes his favourite wine labels into unique artworks.

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