Maria De Buenos Aires

Valentino Monticello

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

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María de Buenos Aires is a tango opera with music by Astor Piazzolla and libretto by Horacio Ferrer. It premiered at the Sala Planeta in Buenos Aires in May 1968.

The surreal plot centres on a prostitute in Buenos Aires, Argentina; the second half takes place after her death. The characters include María (and after her death, the Shadow of María), various members of the Buenos Aires underworld, a poet narrator who is also a goblin-like duende or fairy, several marionettes under his control, and a circus of psychoanalysts.

The music draws on the nuevo tango idiom for which Piazzolla is famous. The original idea for the story was conceived by Piazzolla's then lover, Egle Martin (though she was already married to Eduardo "Lalo" Palacios). The title role was originally conceived for Martin but while Piazzolla was still composing the opera, he and Martin broke up after he asked her husband for her hand in marriage. According to Martin, Piazzolla said to Lalo, "She is music, she can't belong to anybody, no she is music, she is music, and that's me." After their rift a replacement was desperately needed, but Piazzolla soon met folksinger Amelita Baltar at the Buenos Aires nightclub "Nuestro Tiempo. Baltar's beauty and captivating stage presence made her an ideal leading character.

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 Argentina and Uruguay, so as to add to the Latin atmosphere of the scene. The picture features the scene in the magic “Bar Tango”, where an inebriated goblin expresses his pain at the loss of Maria, who embodied the spirit of "The Tango", whilst three marionettes look on.

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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