Taking inspiration from Dante’s Divine Comedy, Calvino explores the mechanism of imagination, or rather the ability to create images in our minds that have almost ‘fallen from the sky’. Visibility is a value that must be preserved in this new millennium as we risk losing the capacity to imagine, to create images behind closed eyes.
The supremacy of the image over the word is a characteristic of our times. The image is rapid and concise, but above all inclusive, because it transcends geographic, linguistic and even cultural boundaries. The image speaks to everybody.
It is probably for precisely these reasons that we have witnessed the birth of Brands who have built their success on this ‘torrent of images’. Cases such as Instagram and Pinterest are a definite demonstration of how forward-looking Calvino was: lightness, quickness and visibility are the founding values of these Brands.
Even in the realm of information, which has been the chosen territory of the written word since its birth, is increasingly asserting itself with the use of an image-based approach to news. Within this context, we have seen the birth of successful brands such as Flipboard, which transforms the ‘torrent of news’ into a ‘torrent of images’.
The brand Nike has demonstrated how a symbol, an image, can be a vehicle for the communication of a brand’s values in every corner of the world, making it unnecessary to adopt local traditions and otherwise localise the brand.