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Guest Writer: PAM MILLER, Fine Artist

Photos: Roberto Alborghetti


What a great evening last Friday at Bartons was, when Roberto Alborghetti presented his Ghost Bus films!
Initially, the audience was treated to archive film of the Bartons’ bus in service, as the first tour operator in Italy and beyond. How fascinating this was and appeared to totally captivate its viewers.
As if this wasn’t spellbinding enough, what came next was even more enthralling, presented very professionally by its producer, Roberto Alborghetti (introduced by Marysia Zipser, Art-Culture-Tourism Group Founder). Nothing had prepared me (and it seems the rest of the audience) to the exciting spectacle that followed, a dramatic, emotional series of images created from photographs taken of the scratched and deteriorating paintwork from the surface of the old Bartons bus that had been ‘put out to grass’, at the end of its service.

These images, entitled ‘Lacer/actions’, were projected onto a large screen, incredibly imaginatively, like abstract paintings, juxtaposed alongside quotes from writers, such as Tennyson and with such intensity of rhythm and power and incorporating music of equal emotive force.

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The film was projected from a Bartons’ vehicle in deep darkness within the Bartons’ building and, as I was sitting at the side of the vehicle and slightly lower, the vehicle had a massive presence, giving me the sensation of being transported right into the film and the imaginary world of Roberto – the abstract images, the titles of which were maps, lands, skies, horizons…….indeed, I was transported back to Zambia (where I lived in the mid to late seventies), when viewing the orange and gold abstracts – ‘Lacer/actions’ inspired by the surface of a Land Rover – a truely emotional experience for me.
Roberto’s second film inspired by The Ghost Bus was also exciting to view. In this instance, the film was more experimental, an attempt to combine watercolour painting with the more hard-edged abstract photographs of The Ghost Bus. If anything, I do believe he will progress this idea further if he softens the edges of the photographic images of the scratches and deteriorating paintwork on the bus, to ‘marry’ the organic quality of watercolour with the photographed scratches/deterioration of paint. Tom, James, Richard and Simon Barton’s incorporated music complimented well the visual display of imagery.
To conclude, Roberto, in my opinion, is to be congratulated on his highly professional production and presentation of his Ghost Bus body of work, as is Marysia, who has shown much vision in engaging such a talented Italian artist/writer within The Creative Industries of Beeston and Chilwell. Congratulations, too, are due to Simon Barton (and Marysia) who has demonstrated such creative thinking in the hosting of this event. Grateful thanks, also, go to Simon for providing refreshments on the night and for being such an excellent host, along with members of his family.
Finally, it must be said that it was interesting to ‘meet’ the owner of ‘The Ghost Bus’, after the films; also, to witness Roberto’s kindness, in presenting her, along with Marysia and Simon, with printed canvases of his ‘Lacer/actions’ and wonderful printed scarves (also of the Lacer/actions) for Marysia and Jeannie Barton.
Many thanks to Roberto – long may he continue with his ‘Lacer/actions’ project. Printed ceramics next? Yes, a great idea of Roberto’s, I do believe.  Mille grazie!
Very best wishes.

Pam Miller


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