Creative flair

The "Magazzini Italiani" were gaining ever greater popularity, this allowed the brothers Emiddio and Alfonso Mele to carry out advertising initiatives also with the aid of banners and decorations used for important occasions such as the visits of sovereigns to Naples, the carnival parties to which hundreds of masked children were invited, theatrical performances at the Salone Margherita, free distribution of products and the famous and original publicity stunt of the zebras..

For a long period the most important streets of Naples were crossed by carriages pulled by zebras and driven by a coachman in gala dress. They were the Mele vehicles for home deliveries that stopped at the customers' homes, here the delivery boys had the task of delivering the purchases to the loyal regulars of the "E. & A. Mele" warehouses.

This was the ingenious idea that was talked about for a long time in the salons and newspapers of the time.
A curiosity tells that the Mele brothers purchased the zebras from the owner of an equestrian circus and later hired a trainer to take care of the exotic animals.


1) car for the transport of privileged customers; 2) home deliveries; 3) Edoardo Matania - carnival party (tempera with mixed techniques - Alfonso Mele collection); 4 - 5) celebratory stamps

Mele e la Ricordi

Mele and Officine Ricordi

The history of Officine Ricordi hinges around the figure of the founder Giovanni, who, due to his pioneering characteristics, can constitute a sort of emblematic figure and in some way similar to that of Emiddio Mele. The commissioning of advertising signs by the Mele company to the Ricordi graphic workshops comes against the backdrop of important transformations not only of a technical but also of an entrepreneurial nature. The Mele commission documents the formative period of advertising graphics like no other experience, also because it took place without interruption for around 25 years.
One of the circumstances that favored the contact between Ricordi and Mele and the subsequent relationships (more than twenty years) that emerged from it, can be identified in the broad economic and cultural penetration of Ricordi in Naples, well received by introduced and cultured men such as the Mele family.


Intellectual friends

Emiddio and Alfonso Mele focused heavily on billboard advertising, without however ever neglecting the mass media of the time. Il Mattino, then directed by Eduardo Scarfoglio, was the favorite newspaper and in which the two brothers aspired to conquer ever greater space, followed by Il Giorno, the newspaper founded by Matilde Serao.