Mariel Hemingway, Nicola Carpinelli and Artiste Winery team up to raise awareness and money
Next week is National Suicide Prevention Week.
And to raise awareness and money, a new suicide prevention nonprofit, the Dead Poets Foundation, is teaming up with Los Olivos-based Artiste Winery.
At 6 p.m. Thursday, World Suicide Prevention Day, Artiste Winery will host “Hearts Unknown.” The online event will feature a pre-recorded talk about suicide that was given by the Dead Poets Foundation’s founders, actress Mariel Hemingway and artist Nicola Carpinelli.
This will be followed by a live question-and-answer section with both of them.
The event is entirely remote, with the pre-recorded and live sections conducted over Zoom. Those interested in participating in the event can register online at artiste.com.
For the event, Artiste Winery co-owner and winemaker Bion Rice has produced three limited edition wines with label artwork designed by Mr. Carpinelli. Each of the three labels depict famous individuals who took their own lives such as Soundgarden vocalist Chris Cornell, author Ernest Hemingway and supermodel Margaux Hemingway. The latter two are Mariel Hemingway’s grandfather and sister.
Those who take part in the Zoom session can purchase these limited edition bottles any time during the event, and a percentage of the proceeds from the wine will go to the Dead Poets Foundation.
In 2019, Ms. Hemingway and Mr. Carpinelli joined forces to create the Dead Poets Foundation, an organization dedicated to preventing suicide by providing those who suffer from depression an outlet to create art and break out of their isolation.
Ms. Hemingway told the News-Press that creating a community in which depressed individuals can tell their personal stories through forms of expression like art and music will help them realize their stories are shared by many other people and isn’t merely their own.
“It actually enables them to feel less alone in their struggle when they realize that other people suffer as well,” she said.
Suicide and mental illness have a long history in Ms. Hemingway’s family. In addition to her grandfather Ernest Hemingway and sister Margaux Hemingway, her two great-grandfathers, one of her uncles and one of her cousins took their own lives.
Ms. Hemingway first became acquainted with Mr. Carpinelli years ago. However, the two only recently started Dead Poets Foundation after they reconnected when Ms. Hemingway said a few words about her sister and grandfather at an art show Mr. Carpinelli was holding in Bend, Ore.
The show featured the same paintings of Ernest and Margaux Hemingway that are on two of the three bottles that will be sold during Hearts Unknown.
Ms. Hemingway said she hopes funds raised during the event will help Dead Poets Foundation get programs in motion to help people who suffer from suicidal thoughts.
“We’re starting small, but we want to become a place where people can come and get answers to questions and guided toward places in their community where they can get help,” she said.
According to Mr. Rice, his winery partners with artists and creates wines inspired by labels created by those artists. After Artiste Winery featured Mr. Carpinelli’s work on one of its bottle labels, Mr. Rice thought there was potential for further synergy between the two of them.
Guided by the aim of bringing the dark, taboo subject of suicide to light, Artiste Winery and Dead Poets Foundation came up with the idea for the Hearts Unknown event.
For Mr. Carpinelli, who called Mr. Rice an “artist” in the way he comes up with different wine blends, partnering with Artiste Winery has been the perfect pairing.
“It felt natural to collaborate with these artists,” Mr. Carpinelli said.
When making the three limited edition wines based on Mr. Carpinelli’s art, Mr. Rice aimed to make each blend resemble the famous person on the label while utilizing the same components, much like how each person is made up of the same human material but is nonetheless distinct.
The blend with the Ernest Hemingway label uses cabernet sauvignon as its base, with a boldness and intensity that the author displayed in both his personality and his books. It is then colored with malbec and grenache.
Grenache is the base for the Margaux Hemingway wine, which Mr. Rice described as “floral, soft, and supple,” and is reflective of the late supermodel’s femininity. The grenache base is complemented with cabernet sauvignon and malbec.
With the Chris Cornel wine, Mr. Rice “wanted to make a wine that literally screamed” like the Soundgarden frontman’s impressive vocal range. With a malbec base and again complemented with grenache and cabernet sauvignon, it also has characteristics of raspberry, blueberry and dark cherry, which the winemaker said creates a higher acid content appropriately referred to as “high notes.”
These limited-edition wines will be available for purchase during the Hearts Unknown event and for three months thereafter, but will not be made again after that.
Ms. Hemingway said she hopes her and Mr. Carpinelli’s pre-recorded talk with help those with suicidal thoughts and those who have lost loved ones to suicide to realize there is a road to recovery.
“I can only hope that people will understand that it’s not the end of their journey because something has happened to them or because they suffer from suicidal ideations,” she said.
Mr. Carpinelli said their talk will succeed if it helps just one person think again before taking his or her own life.
“If we save one person, we save the world.”