Arturo Gatti Jr. follows his father’s footsteps

Spring 2020 issue

“The first time that I saw him I was shocked by the resemblance to his dad. I knew right away that it was
Arturo Gatti’s son.”


It’s late afternoon on a frigid Friday in the dead of a Montreal winter. On the top floor of a mostly empty, slightly dilapidated factory building in the city’s garment district is the Ring 83 Boxing Club.

The large windows that line the walls over a perfect view of the blazing orange sunset; it’s a spectacular backdrop for the boxing ring in the centre of the gym.

Just outside the ring, a young boy is shadow boxing. ²e muscles on his small arms are well-defined, and the surprising strength of his blow is obvious when he hits one of the leather punching bags.

The boy bobs and weaves, feet dancing, as he spars against his invisible opponent. His movements are graceful and natural, like he’s been doing this for years—or maybe it’s just in his blood.

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Parma’s Prowess

Spring 2020 issue

Parma is firmly on the gourmet radar. Home of Parma ham, Parmesan cheese and many other culinary delights, it’s one of the most intriguing food cities you’ll visit. But there’s much more to this city in the rolling Po River valley than food. Parma is a rich fusion of culture and fairytale Renaissance, so rich, in fact, that it has been named the Italian Capital of Culture for 2020.


Exploring this irresistible city is easy; many of the main attractions are in the city centre, a mainly car-free zone where most people walk or cycle. Start at the Duomo di Parma, an important and stunningly beautiful example of Italian Romanesque architecture.

The frescoes in this must-see dome were painted by the famed artist Correggio; photos in a book simplydon’t do this masterpiece justice. Parma has been buzzing with creative energy for centuries. Region theatre ( is one of the most prestigious theatres in Italy.

Commissioned by Maria Luigia d’Austria, the Neoclassical theatre was built between 1821 and 1829 by architect Nicola Bettoli. Today, it is a musical hub and has hosted the opera Festival Verdi every year since 2003.

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Making waves

Spring 2020 issue

Artist Carina Francioso, 31, relishes soaking in a bath once a day—she’d love taking four a day, but acknowledges that it would consume water in excess. “I feel at home in water. I have since I was a kid,” she says.

Sitting opposite her sunset-drenched painting “Sotto lo Stesso Sole,” on display in the library at the Istituto di Cultura, in Toronto, she shares her journey of a life steeped in water. “I was practically born on a boat!” she says. Wavy-haired Francioso grew up in Kitchener- Cambridge, but spent summers on Georgian Bay, splashing around and diving into rapids. And she’d always sit on the rocks and stare into the water.

A graduate of the University of Waterloo Fine Arts programme Francioso was on a trip to Italy in 2014 when inspiration hit one warm summer day. “I was lounging on the shores, in Gallipoli (Puglia), my family’s town, watching the sun go down—it was glistening against the Ionian Sea. I was mesmerized,” she says, her eyes sparkling with wonder. “I photographed it, just to capture what beauty I was seeing.” Francioso found herself with a crystal-clear vision of what she should be painting next.

“A lot of us go to water to feel more alive. It brings a sense of joy,” she says. And by reproducing our precious resource in beautiful light, rather than as a ravaged mess, Francioso sticks with her artistic credo: “Art is about beauty. And everything I do has to do with beauty.”

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Eggplant Parm

Spring 2020 issue

Recipe prepared by Chef Luca Cianciulli at his restaurant Moccione (Villeray, Montreal)


The Parmigiana is a simple and tasty meal that can be enjoyed immediately or frozen to keep handy when needed. Its name, Parmigiana di Melanzane, suggests that it originates from Parma, however the origin of the dish is uncertain and is more widely considered a traditional food from the regions of Campania and Sicilia.

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