Aristocrat by birth and by vocation, Franco Maria Ricci is the creator and publisherof the most elegant and famous art books and art magazines since the Sixties of the last century.As a graphic designer, art collector and refined aesthete he had the courage and the desire to give new life to the art of printing.
Losing themselves among corridors and crossings of the world’s largest labyrinth ? the huge maze, that Franco Maria Ricci built with 200 thousand of bamboo plants in 2015, near to Parma ? the spectators have to symbolically walk through the materialization of the lifelong dream of a man, who has been able to surprise the world with his works and to influence the taste of generations of bibliophiles and lovers of beauty. In the documentary ??ph?m?re – The Inevitable Beauty? the protagonist himself tells his own story, from an evocative and non-didactic point of view. Ricci is presented as a visionary intellectual, a true Italian genius, able to give his own contribution, original and indelible, in various areas of culture. Through his collaborations and deep friendships with some of the most important personalities of the international context, he has been able to merge art and literature, design and narrative, as nobody else did.
The sense of the documentary, as well as of the personal history of Franco Maria Ricci, develops in a movement marked by oxymorons, dichotomies and opposites: Parma and the international Jet-set;?the classic elegance of the sign and its collection of art, eclectic and open to the irrational;?the fantastic and the Enlightenment;?craftsmanship, precious and popular, and art, aristocratic and elitist.?These contrasts, never presented in a totally explicit form and not overtaken by a synthesis, are the sign of the complex and multifaceted personality of the protagonist and they mark the different “chapters” of the documentary: ?Bodoni?, ?Borges?, ?Graphic Design?, ?Black and Gold?, ?FMR?, ?The Collector? and, finally, ?The Labyrinth? one more time. This Borgesian dream, the visual fil rouge of the documentary, is the last Ricci?s monumental work, created between 2004 and 2015 in his hometown Fontanellato, when, like Greta Garbo, he left the scenes at the height of fame, and, like the prince of Ligne, he has devoted himself to the care of a garden without equal.