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Masi unveils the sixth edition of ‘Costasera Contemporary Art’ with the work of Japanese artist Yasuhiro Asai dedicated to the iconic Amarone

Masi, the Valpolicella winery and leader in the production of Amarone, strengthens its historic bond with the world of culture by presenting the sixth edition of the ‘Costasera Contemporary Art’ (CCA) project, created to unite contemporary art with premium quality wine. The artist selected is the Japanese Yasuhiro Asai, an expert in the crafting of Japanese lacquer, known as ‘urushi’, one of the oldest and most prized arts in the Land of the Rising Sun. The work, entitled ‘Saikou’, depicts an incense burner and is reproduced on a limited edition run of Costasera 2005 destined for the international market. The proceeds will be used to finance a scholarship that will enable a young Japanese artist to learn the art of glassmaking in Murano. 

The work and the Costasera bottles with artist’s label will be presented at the Italian Embassy in Tokyo on 1 November to a select audience of opinion makers and dignitaries. 

Masi unveils the sixth edition of 'Costasera Contemporary Art' with the work of Japanese artist Yasuhiro Asai dedicated to the iconic Amarone

‘Costasera Contemporary Art’: The artwork of ‘Saikou’ is reproduced on the label of a valuable run of the iconic Amarone 2005

‘Saikou’ means ‘the fragrance of Europe’: the inspiration for the work comes from Costasera Amarone, a symbol of the culture of a territory expressed in the aromas and tastes of a wine. 

“I believe that the care taken to achieve the taste and perfumes of Costasera Amarone is a true art in itself, of profound elegance,” explained artist Yasuhiro Asai. “Starting from this concept, I used the traditional techniques typical of my culture to create my artwork in a contemporary key, taking about two years to complete it. For the decorations, made of mother-of-pearl with blue and purple hues, I was inspired by the motif of bunches of grapes.” 

The result is an object of great worth and refinement that combines the ancient oriental culture of processing sap from the urushi tree with the equally ancient and fascinating culture of viticulture and wine production, an expression of the millenary skill of a community. 

Masi unveils the sixth edition of 'Costasera Contemporary Art' with the work of Japanese artist Yasuhiro Asai dedicated to the iconic Amarone

“In Japan, Asia’s second largest wine market and the world’s sixth largest wine importer, Masi has had a consolidated presence for almost 40 years. Thanks to the collaboration with JET, a historic commercial partner, our Costasera Amarone has become a benchmark loved by Japanese wine connoisseurs; this fills us with pride,” comments Alessandra Boscaini, Masi’s Sales Director. “We are particularly happy that Yasuhiro Asai, an artist of extraordinary talent, has agreed to contribute to our Costasera Contemporary Art project, providing a rich perspective that unites the ancient roots of Japanese knowledge with our own winemaking traditions.”

Masi unveils the sixth edition of 'Costasera Contemporary Art' with the work of Japanese artist Yasuhiro Asai dedicated to the iconic Amarone

Once again Masi Amarone, considered by President Sandro Boscaini to be “the best spokesperson of the territory”, meets art and culture.

In fact, Masi is proud of its long tradition of sponsorship projects: from the Masi Prize, employed by the Masi Foundation to enhance the heritage and ingenuity and productive skills of Venetian culture for over 40 years; to the support of the Arena Foundation and the famous Opera Festival, which has been promoting musical culture throughout the world for a hundred years; and the collaboration with internationally famous artists such as Liu Bolin, who in 2014 chose the Masi cellars as the set for one of his famous performances of chameleon-like fusion with the environment, entitled ‘Fade in Italy’.