Home Page
English      Italiano      Español      Français


Gio Tavaglione
Giò Tavaglione, the designer of Mondo Beat


Chronologically, Gio Tavaglione's Manifesto di Mondo Beat is the first Italian manifesto of the Sixties
"Manifesto di Mondo Beat", by Giò Tavaglione (approximate copy) printed by Edizioni di Cultura Contemporanea, May 1967, edition 2,000 copies.
Chronologically, Giò Tavaglione's "Manifesto di Mondo Beat" is the first Italian manifesto of the Sixties.


Mondo Beat N. 4 (Issue 6) - May 31, 1967 - Edition: 12,000 copies.

This sixth issue of Mondo Beat magazine appeared at the height of the history of the Movement, at the time of Barbonia City, when the Free Speech Movement in Berkeley and the Provo Movement in Amsterdam were in decline and Mondo Beat's youth produced the greatest changes.
The Barbonia City campsite lasted from the morning of May 1, when it opened, to the morning of June 12, when it was destroyed militarily, but the long wave of sexual liberation it sparked would have reached everywhere in Italy. Italians, who had been sexually repressed, especially Italian women, would emerge from this wave among the most sexually liberated people in the world and would remain so.

*

Note. In this issue, two pages together formed a large one.

The cover was prepared by Melchiorre Gerbino with slogans who had marked the path of the Mondo Beat Movement
Mondo Beat N. 4 (Issue 6) - pages 1 and 12

This cover was realized by Melchiorre Gerbino with slogans that had marked the path of the Mondo Beat Movement. Of these slogans, many are puns and can be understood only by readers who are familiar with the Italian language. Of some other slogans, there is here the translation into English:

- "La scuola fucina di cervelli, preservativo di idee. Studenti, gridatelo dai banchi!" (School is a forge of brains and a condom of ideas - Students, scream this from the desks!)

- "Pubblicazioni sequestrate - La Procura della Repubblica di Milano ha disposto il sequestro di «Mondo Beat» n. 1 dell’ 1.3.1967 giudicandolo di contenuto contrario al buon costume" (Seized publications - The Milan Prosecutor's Office ordered the seizure of «Mondo Beat» n. 1, dated March 1, 1967, having judged its content contrary to morality).

- "Spazio morale per una generazione d'emergenza!" (Moral space for an emergency generation!)

- "Al Vietnam in minicoscienza, alla Vettabbia in minigonna" (In Vietnam with a mini conscience, at Vettabbia with a mini skirt) Note: Vettabbia was the name of the brook which bordered the east side of Barbonia City.

- "La bomba atomica per la fame nel mondo" (The atomic bomb for world hunger)

- "Negli zaini dei beats non c'è posto per le cartucce" (There is no room for cartridges in the backpacks of the Beats)

- "Dateci i sacchi a pelo e tenetevi le bandiere" (Give us the sleeping bags and keep the flags for you)

- "Beats si vive, inseriti si muore" (If Beat, you will live, if in the system, you will die)

- "DIO.OOO.OOO esiste" (GOD,000,000 exists)

And, of course, of all the slogans the most prominent was this

This was the most important slogan of Mondo Beat and the most successful
The one integrated, protesting - the Beat contestating

Here, a historical note.
Due to a paradox, Grand Hotel magazine was the first publication to cite the term "contestazione" in the new sense with which it was formulated by Mondo Beat.
What paradox?
Since Mondo Beat never asked for money to grant an interview and Grand Hotel asked for it, Melchiorre Gerbino granted the interview on condition that the text, that Grand Hotel would have published, would be agreed with Mondo Beat. This, because Grand Hotel was a magazine who published the most sentimental love stories (...then she met a young doctor...) and Melchiorre Gerbino feared that it would describe the Beats in romantic scenes in the moonlight.
Thus, since the opposite paradoxes touch each other, the Grand Hotel of the sighs of love would have been the first publication to announce one of the most radical events, the Contestation.

This article of Grand Hotel appeared on May 6, 1967 (1)    This article of Grand Hotel appeared on May 6, 1967 (2)
Grand Hotel magazine was the first publication in the world to cite the term "contestazione" as formulated by Mondo Beat.

Here is the question that Dina Vallino, the Grand Hotel journalist who interviewed Gerbino, asked him: "What is the purpose of your protest? " (Cosa vi proponete di ottenere con la vostra protesta?).
Here is Melchiorre Gerbino's answer: "More than a protest, our is the contestation of a system of life. Humanity runs the risk of a nuclear disaster, many people prefer not to think about it, the Beats want to remind everyone. They want to offer, with their way of life, a testimony of nonviolence, convinced that only the spread of this attitude can save humanity".
This was the first time that the term "contestazione", used in this new meaning of anti-Establishment attitude, appeared in a publication.
Wherever the term "contestazione", "contestation", "contestación"... would have appeared in publications, the date will be later than May 6, 1967.

*

The family, home of selfishness, by Antonio Mariani
Mondo Beat N. 4 (Issue 6) - pages 2 and 3

In the upper left part of this large page, signed OM, there is a poem on the wanderings on the road, by Silla Ferradini.

Below it, there are 6 verses by Tella Ferrari.

In the middle of the page, there is the article by Anto (Antonio) Mariani "La famiglia focolare d'egoismo" (The family, home of selfishness). Antonio Mariani was a youth from the Base of Mondo Beat (he participated in the Rally to Contestate the Establishment) and he was also in the editorial staff of the Magazine. In this article, he described how a typical Italian family of that time prevented a boy from participating in social life as he wished to do, even though there was nothing wrong with what he wished to do. And he described how parents pushed a son to conform in the most boring and unfruitful ways to what they believed was good for his social integration.
In this photo, from left to right, the second seated is Antonio Mariani.

On the left of the page, Claudio Pitschen, an external contributor to the magazine Mondo Beat.
And below, Renzo Freschi (19664), who could not refrain from writing, even when he had nothing interesting to tell.

*

A boring open letter sent to Mondo Beat by Michele Rallo, a fascist who didn't understand that Mondo Beat was an anarchist movement and not a communist one
Mondo Beat N. 4 (Issue 6) - pages 4 and 5

On the right of this page, signed Paola and titled titled "Al punto di partenza" (At the starting point), there is the article of an external contributor to the magazine Mondo Beat.

"Senza motivi Senza anima" (Without motivations - Without soul), signed OM, was a literary outbreak of Silla Ferradini.

The rest of the page is covered by an open letter sent us by a fascist, Michele Rallo, who understood nothing of the anarchist nature of Mondo Beat and believed that the Movement was influenced by the communists. Thus, stupidly, Michele Rallo explained us how Jack Kerouac and other characters of the Beat Generation were not communists.
But what is amazing is the answer that a newcomer in the editorial staff of the Magazine gave to the fascist Michele Rallo. Let's talk a bit about this newcomer, Gianni De Martino. He had introduced himself as a Catholic homosexual (the term "gay" was not yet in use at the time of Mondo Beat) and he had asked Melchiorre Gerbino if he could take part in the editorial staff. I accepted him because it was the time when homosexuals took an open position to assert their civil rights.
But Gianni De Martino did not write on the civil rights of homosexuals, but he wrote nonsense when answering to the fascist Michele Rallo. He wrote that Jack Kerouac was nobody, because no Beat recognized in him a master and he reproached Jack Kerouac because he drank alcohol instead of thinking of Jesus. As Gianni De Martino was full of himself, the legendary Baron Dante Palla, who gave the nicknames to newcomers, nicknamed Gianni De Martino "Gianni De Pincopallino", which in English would be John Nobody.

The pathology of an individual bent to the condition of an inverted male by sodomite priests
Gianni De Martino against Jack Kerouac from the pages of Mondo Beat.

About this unfortunate person, Gianni De Martino, I will tell in a separate chapter. And I will do it, not because this person had some influence in Mondo Beat, as he had not at all, but because his personal history is exemplary to show to what an extent the Vatican exploits subjects who were sodomized by priests their teachers. So, even if it is not essential, I suggest that you read about Gianni De Martino, after having finished reading the story of Mondo Beat.
But I have to say now that 3 articles published in this sixth issue (two of which signed "OM" and one "A. OM") were written by Silla Ferradini, a Milanese writer, and Gianni De Martino has tried to appear as the author of them. How this? Let's explain it. Melchiorre Gerbino did not appreciate the opportunistic side of Silla Ferradini's personality, which he undoubtedly had, so the two were not in good relationship. At the time of the preparation of this sixth issue, Silla Ferradini, fearing a refusal by Melchiorre Gerbino, gave these 3 articles to Gianni De Martino, asking him to publish them anonymously. Gianni De Martino, who is a cheater, has let people believe that he was the one who wrote those articles, and all, me included, believed it. But in 2017, that is 50 years after these articles were published, Melchiorre Gerbino tried to find the family name of that Enea who created the logos Mondo Beat and Onda Verde, family name that he had forgotten, and he made a round of phone calls and, among others, he called Silla Ferradini. Since, on that occasion, the two found a nice way to entertain each other, they had a long conversation and then Ferradini confessed to Gerbino that he was the one who had written those articles. And he certainly told the truth. Indeed, why didn't Gianni De Martino sign those articles with his name? Certainly, because he feared that Silla Ferradini would claim paternity. Gianni De Martino has often shown that he is an impostor, undoubtedly he was once again, when he wanted us to believe that he was the author of these writings

3 writings to be attributed to the Milanese writer Silla Ferradini
3 writings by Silla Ferradini

*

Gio Tavaglione was inspired by Monique Charvet
Mondo Beat N. 4 (Issue 6) - pages 6 and 7 (Top half of the Manifesto)

The top half of Giò Tavaglione's "Manifesto di Mondo Beat", which was reproduced in 6,000 copies out of the 12,000 copies of this issue.

Gio Tavaglione was inspired by Monique Charvet
Monique Charvet Monik

In this photo, taken in The Cave at the time of Mondo Beat's hunger strike, the first is Monique Charvet Monik, a French girl, to her right Ringo and Jenny, Romans.
Monique Charvet took part in the Rally of Flowers, the hunger strike in The Cave and the following Rally to Contestate the Establishment. She was caught by the police in both rallies and deported twice to France, from where she returned twice. At police headquarters, they were kind to her and never put her in prison. Giò Tavaglione was inspired by her and in the upper left corner of the "Manifesto di Mondo Beat" he wrote "Siamo tutti a viso aperto" (We are all open-faced) "ma Monik di più" (but Monik more). And there are also signature and date (Giò 67).

Gio Tavaglione died very young in an accident in a hotel room
Beat N. 4 (Issue 6) - pages 6 and 7 (Lower half of the Manifesto)

The lower half of Giò Tavaglione's "Manifesto di Mondo Beat" was reproduced in the remaining 6,000 copies of the the 12,000 copies of this issue.
Edizioni di Cultura Contemporanea, copyright holder of the Manifesto, graciously authorized the publication of it in Mondo Beat magazine.

Giò Tavaglione died very young, a few years after the time of Mondo Beat. He slipped into the hotel room where he lived and slammed his head against the edge of a piece of furniture. He did not drink alcohol, nor did he take drugs, it was a terrible accident that no one expected.
In this photo, Giò Tavaglione is the first on the right. Next to him, Giorgio Contini. The last on the left, Gunilla Unger.

*

Sexual education in the Italian style, by Claudio Alemagna, an article to read
Beat N. 4 (Issue 6) - pages 8 and 9

In the upper part of this page, there is an article, "Dalla foglia di fico alla vernice", by that external contributor whose mother killed the wolf dog.

Signed A.OM, "Dateci i sacchi a pelo e tenetevi le bandiere" (Give us the sleeping bags and keep the flags for you) an article against compulsory military service by Silla Ferradini.

In the middle of the lower part of this page, Melchiorre Gerbino published a photo he had taken from those already published by the newspaper L'Unità, a photo of a girl who really looked like those girls who attended Barbonia City, and he published it with the caption "Send us 50 kg of spaghetti every day at Mondo Beat campsite, Via Ripamonti. Help us contestate you!". As I have already mentioned, the newspaper Il Giorno was receptive and sent 50 kg of spaghetti to the campsite every day.

Finally, on the left of the lower part of this page, there is an article of great value, by Claudio Alemagna, entitled "EDUCAZIONE SESSUALE ALL'ITALIANA" (Sexual education in the Italian style). It is the case I translate the essential of it and you read it, because this article is so actual that it seems not to have been written in the sixties, but in the (two thousand) twenties:
« The press is announcing that the government is preparing some texts for sexual education in the school, since it is "a necessity that cannot be postponed".
The news fills us with dismay, because we imagine what can be sexual education in a country ruled by proconsuls of the Vatican. So far, the bigots who govern us have adopted the tactic of ignoring the issue of sexual freedom, by strictly forbidding any discussion on the subject. Now that young people are getting rid of many taboos, those bigots are abandoning their silence and are preparing a counterattack.
To predict what will be sexual education in our school, just look at some of the many small volumes that various Catholic organizations have recently published on the subject.
These books usually begin with a very detailed exposure on reproduction, that is, with photos of sperm and ovules, discourse on chromosomes, and many other topics of little interest to the nonspecialist. This scientific exposure aims to intimidate the reader, making him understand how great is his ignorance on the subject, in order to prevent him from criticizing the crap that will be said later.
On the other hand, when it comes to contraception, the discourse becomes very fast and it highlights the insecurity of all means of birth control and the "immoral, unnatural" feature of the same means. Thus, it concludes that the surest means of contraception is abstinence.
Information returns to be plentiful when it comes to sexually transmitted diseases: infertility , paralysis, blindness, madness, abnormal children, are spectra dramatically agitated before the eyes of the reader.
When the effect of terror has been achieved, they inform, with only two lines, that venereal diseases can be treated and cured.
Finally comes the sure assertion that abstinence has never hurt anyone and can easily be achieved by any normal young person.
So, it is to be hoped for in our youth's attitude of refusal towards school and teachers, so as not to lose what we have achieved so far in the field of sexual freedom.»

*

 The champion, by Gianluigi Castelli on the refusal of Muhammad Ali in participating in the Vietnam war
Beat N. 4 (Issue 6) - pages 10 and 11

On this page, there are 3 articles, respectively signed, Tito Livio Ricci, Giuseppe Franzosi, Giovanna Carlier, who were all external contributors.

On the same page, there is of interesting an article, "Il campione" (The champion), by GIANLUIGI (Gianluigi Castelli), who expressed appreciation for Cassius Clay/Muhammad Ali's refusal to participate in the Vietnam War. This article is printed at the top right of the page. Below it, there is another article "Il morto", (The dead driver) by Renato (Renè Vento), who complained that in Monte Carlo, where a Formula 1 driver had died in an accident, people at the casino were still playing roulette, instead of pausing in sorrow. With this article, Renè Vento believed he was contestating the System, when in reality this was the dumbest article published in Mondo Beat magazine.


In conclusion.
This last issue, although original as layout, had however very little of interesting to read, because too many were the articles by people foreign to the Contestation, who wrote trifles, as they did not understand what was going on.
Evidently, Melchiorre Gerbino was in a critical situation with the Magazine and he understood it well. Therefore, before printing this sixth issue, he had already decided that, after it, he would suspend publications for four months, that is to say until the beginning of October, when the schools reopened, and coinciding with the time when Mondo Beat would return from Barbonia City to The Cave. He wanted to change the nature of the Magazine, by publishing only cartoons, images with lapidary legends and photomontages. For sure, this would have produced a selection of original collaborators. He had calculated that four months time were needed to operate this transformation. After that, he would have been able to publish, before the end of the year, 3 or 4 more issues, then the Movement would have been reasonably dissolved and the Magazine would have finished publishing definitely. Later I will explain why dissolve the Movement and finish with the publications of the Magazine at the end of that year.
To have time to develop this project, without being absorbed by other commitments, he decided to print 12,000 copies of this sixth issue, so that they would have lasted until early October. Then, on June 1, when the Tecnografica Milanese delivered us the 12,000 copies, we stored 7,000 copies in The Cave and 5,000 were put into circulation for sale. As it was almost summer and people were already going on vacations, we estimated that the 5,000 copies put into circulation would have been sold in the time of a month. Instead they were sold in 3 days. Consequently, we had to stop selling on the streets, for not having sold out all the copies at once, but for being able to distribute them over time. Incredible paradox, the Magazine was most successful when it reached the lowest quality of its articles. Obviously, this success was due to the sexual revolution going on in Barbonia City, of which the Milanese were informed, day after day, by the furious articles of Corriere della Sera, Corriere d'Informazione and La Notte.

History of Mondo Beat - Chapter 14