1946-47 – Public housing in Via della Farnesina 52 – Third block.
An old lady who lived in my neighbourhood and who highly admired my sketches, suggested that I go and visit Paolo Tarquini, a painter who lived with his brothers and sisters in the third block. Paolo welcomed me very kindly in his home. There, a big cardboard was hanging on a wall and Paolo was drawing on it with crayons. It was the poster for a movie, where a brawny Tarzan appeared, who was personified by the actor Johnny Weissmuller. Paolo told me firstly that if I would like to become a real painter, I had to work ten years long just “for nothing”. Then he gave to me some pictures of Greek statues and of Michelangelo’s sculptures so that I could reproduce them by drawing. After many months of hard apprenticeship – Paolo was a very severe old master, despite all his kindness and his sense of humour – he suggested me to go to the evening school “Arte e Mestieri” in Via San Giacomo, as an essential step in order to enter the art school. I cannot end this chapter without mentioning the large Paolo’s family, of which the members were: his father Sabatino Tarquini, a great sculptor who loved the classical art (I saw him just a couple of times) and his brothers and sisters Luigi, Glauco, Alceo, Atena, Eschilo, Caio, Maria and Nice. His mother was dead already when I first met him. Together with Caio I spent almost every weekend at the Vatican’s museums in order to make drawings of the sculptures. Maria got married with my cousin Luigino, with whom she lives nowadays in Australia.

Click on the photo to visit the website of Paolo Tarquini

Paolo Tarquini, aka “Bubů di Montparnasse" or “Palt” and his poster for the Tarzan movie.

"Palt" and I in a beautiful spring’s day at the Lungotevere Thaon de Revel. At that time I frequented the art school already. To the right you can see Caio at one of his painting’s show in Via Margutta.

1946 - One of my drawing exercises while I was learning under Paolo Tarquini.

I don’t remember exacly how, I had the occasion to work by Professor Fausto Conti during that period. Prof. Conti was a famous illustrator of sacred subjects. Amongst his customers there was also Autovox, for which he had realized very nice adverisings. Thanks to Prof. Conti, by whome I went working during all my Art school period, I learned an absolute precision in handling the professional tools, which, even if not so many, do need extreme “care”. Above all airbrush!
Prof. Conti teachings were essential to achieve that top quality level which has allowed me to become a professionist. Later, my friends in FCB, Mc-Can-Erickson or SCS would have called me “The airbrush wizard”, thanks to Professor Fausto Conti!