english version

 Rome, 24 may 2014

Rodin and Michelangelo's influence, the work of matter and the triumph of marble


Coming to an end May 25 the exhibition dedicated to Auguste Rodin (Paris 1840 - Meudon 1917) . Housed in the monumental Great Rooms of the Baths of Diocletian in Rome, the exhibition promoted by the Superintendence for Archaeological Heritage of Rome and the Musée Rodin in Paris, curated by Aline Magnien, chief curator of the heritage of the Musée Rodin, is presented as one of the most representative reviews of the great French sculptor's works with its 60 sculptures on display. Through the exhibition we got to learn the various stages of Rodin's artistic life from the initial period that sees implementing a series of neo-classical works untill the transition to a personal and innovative elaboration of sculpture plasticity that arrives at the concept of “not done” so dear to Michelangelo, to which Rodin looks with great interest. The basis of the work is the recovery of the tradition that leads to the affirmation of a new concept of sculpture. Mostly bare figures in which eros serves as predominant idea, memories of ancient myths, as Apollo and Daphne, Icarus and Aurora, now more important than ever in the past. The choice of marble is weighted. The marble evokes the past and the great sculptors, and although its texture is hard and cold is the most suitable to represent the human body, the movement, the twisted and beating figure. This material also allows to play with light and shadow, cavities and protrusions. Just from this whole overview comes the power of Rodin and his revolution, in opposition to the tendencies of the neoclassicism that looked to antiquity as the only aesthetic and formal matrix .
The exhibition opens with the work par excellence, the Kiss, Paul and Frances, the two adulterers mentioned by Dante in the fifth canto of Hell. Impressive and seductive, this sculpture dominates the entrance to the room.
Looking at the marble group we notice that emerges a particular sensitivity, totally new respect to the era in which it was made. The material recreates the sensuality, and nudity is exposed with a very innovative erotic charge. It's amazing the dimention of the work so as to remain attracted despite we move away to look at the dozens of sculptures rested on benches. It appears the union between the imaginary of Rodin and the influence of Michelangelo's genius, an alchemy that is expressed in the vision and manipulation of matter, shaped by the skilful hand of the sculptor capable to extrac from the marble blocks the vital essence of figures, making them alive and vibrant. Rodin looked at Michelangelo's works inspired primarily by the volumes and forms that stood out in the Sistine Chapel, in the great fresco depicting the Last Judgement that fascinated him from the first moment he saw it. Rodin then plays with the size of the mass, with volumes, and this feature will also be found in his later works, especially because since 1894 he will be helped by Henri Lebossé, a specialist of enlargement, to change the scale of his work.
Rodin initially didn't receive the consent of the Academies, but this is not surprising. It seems to be common destiny to great geniuses, of art and of science, to be subject to the defeatist criticism. But how it is right to be, during the time he was able to make appreciate his art so much that today his sculptures are kept in a museum in Paris that bears his name. L'homme au nez cassé, the portrait of Michelangelo, tribute to the great artist from which it takes inspiration, was even rejected by the Paris Salon of 1864. This bust opens the exhibition, which includes the first phase of Rodin's artistic life and is followed by other sculptures maked in that neoclassical style so in vogue in the second half of the 800 in France. These are elegant busts of women, philosophers or mythological subjects, such as the bust of Diana. Here the processing of marble creates an illusionistic effect through a deep attention to details, later destined to disappear, which tries to reproduce the appearance of flesh, of fabric clothes or of ornamental flowers.
The later works are of an entirely different matrix where the personal touch of Rodin emerges in full light, with a series of sculptures that marks the growth of the genius. Rodin can be considered like a painter lent to sculpture because its marbles create unique pictorial panels observed from various angles. Each figure has a strongexpressive impact , The woman fish, The aurora , Paul and Frances in the clouds. Rodin also pays tribute to his companion of a lifetime, Rose Beuret, with a wonderful bust that recreates her features's sweetness. They look like satues of salt, marble has a rough grainy effect, is the backdrop to the sculpture itself, smooth, lunar, which emerges from matter, as a mother of pearl anchored and protected from the shell of the oyster. And here we begin to talk about the unfinished, a concept taken up again by Michelangelo. Many of the works create a background and act as a kind of high or low relief, sculpted figure seems sketched because it becomes detached from the formless matter of which remains an integral part, so that the work is deliberately unfinished. The sculptor gladly confuses tracks and creates ill-defined boundaries between the work and the marble base . Over time, Rodin increases the role of the unfinished as plastic and aesthetic effect, refusing any illusionist desire. Good example are the famous portraits of Victor Hugo and Puvis de Chavannes, where each figure emerges from the raw mass that appears in all its voluminosity.

Another theme taken up repeatedly by the artist are the hands, huge, gigantic, upraised or tapering in the act of shaking, receiving, concealing. As Lovers' hands or The Secret. But more than anything else it is worth remembering God's hand, undisputed masterpiece because it conceives the Absolute and the time of creation. Its plastic composition compels the viewer to turn around the figure to grasp the fullness of the work, the hands that hold the stone that encloses the bodies, a man and a woman, Adam and Eve, just born from the mind of the creator. This work is with The kiss the most representative works of art because in it Rodin fully expresses his artistic genius.Finally, with the solo exhibition in 1900 at the Alma, arrives the critical acclaim, the success and the glory. His works are demanded all over the world so that his employees are committed to reproduce a considerable number of subjects to satisfy the growing customer.
As the tradition of the ancient workshops of the past, there is a clear distinction of responsibilities between the gestation of the conceptual design, which belongs to the artist, and the actual construction , delegated to his assistants, in charge of reproducing the idea outlined in sketches. Artists also of high talent, the sketchers, so called in the jargon craftsman, are mentioned in the exhibition because they have helped to create these works of exceptional artistic beauty now famous throughout the world.
Perhaps to highlight the idea of the studio, I please see the idea of ​​setting up an immense laboratory with great big rooms occupied by long wooden benches on which they are resting blocks of marble. I gimagine the sketchers intent to sculpt the raw stone there, each in front of his work, controlled by the watchful eye of the master, and a continuous and confused hammering. All in the beautiful frame of the great halls of the Baths of Diocletian, a place so dear to Michelangelo who created inside the beautiful cloister of the Carthusian monks's monastery. Everything 's back then, and refers to the combination of the two eternal and unforgettable great masters.



Robert Capa : Chronicles of war on Italian soil

3 October 2013 - 6 January 2014

Museum of Rome - Palazzo Braschi

Inaugurated on October 2 2013 at Palazzo Braschi in the presence of the Hungarian authorities and the Superintendent Capitolina, the exhibition presents for the first time in Italy 78 photographs taken by Robert Capa, born Endre Friedmann, one of the most famous photographers of the twentieth century, if not all times. On this occasion, we celebrate a double anniversary: the centenary of the birth of the famous photographer (born in Budapest in 1913 ) and the seventy years of the landing of Anglo-American troops in Italy.

As part of the cultural year Hungary - Italy 2013, the Hungarian government has decided to propose a unique subject  to seal the humanistic bond between the two peoples. The choice, meditated with the intent of finding a point in common with the Italian history, fell on the work of an artist load of that humanity and that sensitivity which belong to the Eastern Europe people. As pointed out by the Deputy State Secretary for Economic Affairs of the Ministry of Human Resources of Hungary Ferenc Batho for centuries exists a deep friendship between the two peoples which they intend to strenghten. “Various initiatives have been held in the italian cultural exhibitions which have seen the works of our great modern and contemporary artists and today I am proud to bring to Rome a great and talented artist of our land with its photographs that immortalized scenes of life belonging to the Italian history.
Considered the father of photojournalism,, which was able to give a new look and a definite direction , Robert Capa founded in 1947 in Paris the Magnum Photos which will become one of the largest photo agencies in the world. Capa was a great war correspondent. In forty years of life ended tragically in 1954 by the explosion of a land mine in Vietnam during the First Indochina War,, he immortalized by his photographs the dramatic moments of the big five wars that have bloodied the first fifty years of the last century. Capa means  "Shark" and is a nickname that was given to him by his friends and became his nom de guerre. He was always in the forefront living among the soldiers on the battlefield, ready to seize with its objective the soul of men who participated tragically in the atrocities of the war, soldiers and civilians, men and women, old people and children. Featuring a personality out of the ordinar, Capa deeply loved his profession. Photographing the world was his reason for living. He was then a reporter and an eyewitness of moments that have passed into history . Today we can look at these pictures as fragments of a mirror in which are reflected entire worlds and the horrors of the wars that have raged across five continents.

But what binds Robert Capa to Italy? It 'easy to say. During his short life Capa snapped about seventy photographs in 23 countries that were scene of war. Some of these, namely 78, were taken on Italian soil during World War II. In fact, as a war correspondent accredited to the American troops, Capa was present at the landing of Anglo-American troops in Anzio to liberate Italy from the horrors committed by the Nazi-Fascism.

Today that reality so far away takes life again through this very interesting exhibition in the Museo di Roma Palazzo Braschi, where the pictures are exposed. The photographs are part of the Master Selection, a collection of 957 shots selected by Robert Capa' brother, Cornell, and his biographer Richard Whelan among the thousands made ​​during his journalistic career. There are only three copies in the world of this collection today preserved one at the International Center of Photography in New York, the second at the Tokyo Art Museum and the third at the Hungarian National Museum in Budapest. The latter has lent its, purchased in 2009 from the International Center of Photography in New York, for the preparation of this important event curated by Beatrix Lengyel, head office of the Historical Photo of the Hungarian National Museum, and which has seen the participation of the Superintendent Capitolina for Cultural Heritage, of the Ministry of Human Resources of Hungary, of the Embassy of Hungary and of the Hungarian Academy in Rome, and will remain on display until January 6, 2014.
The war  seen through the lens of a camera, shots that hold exciting and terrifying moments of joy and sorrow. Dramatic scenes of real life which show the fine line between life and death that is emerging from the rubble of the bombing, in the destroyed  streets, on the battlefields,  in makeshift hospitals camped in the churches. Images as strong as rich of deep humanity that captures us and excites us because it awakens in us the horror of war and the compassion for the victims.

Capa has immortalized the ascent of the paratroopers from Tunisia to Sicily, the surrender of Palermo, the siege of Troina, the funeral of students in Naples, the difficulties on the way to Monte Cassino, Italy devastated by World War II, so close to the poverty and despair, which festively welcomes the Anglo-American troops, finally free of the Nazi atrocities. A dip in our country's history through  black and white images captured by a lens, one clear glass that reflects the expressions of joy and pain of the faces marked by the atrocities of war. They are soldiers and civilians, Italian, American and German soldiers, players active and passive, victims and perpetrators.

Being photographed by Capa, they become unwitting subjects of the history of our country because the story is made ​​up of men, of human affairs often neglected by the record, and not merely sentences written on the books. So he, through his photographs has become part of our history too. Thus is revealed the trait d'union of the two countries that today with pride and emotion introduce the audience to this great figure of Hungarian culture.

Shaul Knaz for the first time in Rome

The Israeli artist exhibites his paintings at the Ermanno Tedeschi Gallery in the picturesque setting of the Portico d'Ottavia.

Shaul Knaz
from September 24 to October 31, 2013

Roma 24 September 2013, Portico d' Ottavia. Under the starry sky of the historic roman district that preserves the aromas and the atmosphere of the past, Ermanno Tedeschi Gallery opens the season with the Israelian artist Shaul Knaz exhibition. An important showcase that brings for the first time in Italy the works of the master, who attended the inauguration of the exhibition. The public will be able to admire it until next October 31.

Born in 1939 in Kibbutz Gan Shmuel, Israel Shaul Knaz offers its own way of making art resulting from a long experience as an illustrator and graphic artist. An evolutionary process that led him to seek and eventually find his own expressive language, as original as immediate. Knaz exposes a personal vision of reality that surrounds him, in a difficult country which is Israel, subjected to daily social and political tensions. The central theme of his work is the difficult relationship between people, the sense of alienation that pits the individual to modern society that tends to stifle his essence, his humanity. In his paintings the subjects that make up the whole are assembled at random, often repeated or reversed in a space that denies the prospect. It is therefore a flat and two-dimensional space.
In other works, instead, we can  see how the artist is able to create modern bas-relieves using the tube of paint directly on the canvas or by the overlap of plastic material. The bright colors and the original compositions characterize his uniqueness as an artist
I walk  toward the teacher, I introduce myself and ask him an interview. Knaz, accompanied by his wife Hann, a kind and friendly lady, agrees to answer my questions.

Question: When do you began your career as an artist ?
Answer: I don't know. It happened. It was not the result of a real decision. Initially I worked as an art designer for magazines in Tel Aviv. I have done many illustrations for magazines. I also drew cartoons and political cartoons but in recent years I abbandonedt this kind because I wanted something that was very basic in life. The newspapers are now updated for today. So I tried to develop my own special way of making art. The essence of my art is based on the ability or inability of people to live together. I think that in modern life is much more critical to live together with people who communicate with the smart phone. As you can see every man and woman trying to get to the other, and not always succeed. Nevertheless, they do not stop trying.

Question: Do you take inspiration from your emotions or from your life in general?
Answer: Sure. As you know I live in a very special country and under constant pressure. Many of us are very involved in political movements for peace.

Question: Do you live in Israel?
Answer: Yes, the situation in Israel brings a lot of tension in daily life. Many people try to live together, not to give in , but it is not easy in modern life. So I'm trying to compete with a situation without a solution. But it is interesting to try to check reality also in this way.

Question: Do you try to glorify life using color? Could this be an interpretation of your work ?
Answer: I live a constructive disillusionment. Or let's say a constructive pessimism. The colors make the whole life around me more colorful. (pun intended ). But deep in my heart I am very pessimistic about the situation of my country, about the relationships between people .

Question: But do you cultivate hope?
Answer: You must have hope. We need to create, encourage people to think about their life and try to find themselves in one way or another .

Question: Is this the first time that you come to Rome ?
Answer: In the past we came to Rome with an organized tour. But today we really discover it. It 's wonderful. The home of culture and art.

Question: The last question. Can you tell me something about your painting technique?
Answer: It ' a mix of materials. Acrylic on one hand and industrial colors in the other. But also oil paints. I always try to find new colors by mixing many palettes.

"And with a great result". I conclude. This completes my interview. I thank the artist and his lovely wife, and look back  the paintings. A very interesting exhibition from every point of view.

Mattia Preti: The Cavalier Calabrese at Venaria Reale palace.

From May 16 to September 15, 2013

Turin, Reggia di Venaria Reale

On the occasion of the four hundredth anniversary of the birth, the Calabria region pays tribute to its most important fellow with a series of cultural events. After the important retrospective at the museum of Taverna in Calabria, where the painter saw the birth, now it's up to Piedmont to host at the magnificent rooms of the palace of Venaria severals paintings by Mattia Preti. Painter with great artistic skills, a follower of Caravaggio from which he takes the chiaroscuro stretch to which adds touch of color of the Venetian painters, Mattia Preti was born in Taverna, a small village in the province of Catanzaro (Italy) in 1613. He moved to Rome in 1630 by his brother Gregory, who was also a painter, and had great success at the court of Pope Urban VIII. In 1642 the Pope named him Knight of Magistral Obedience of the Order of Malta. Since then his name will be Cavalier Calabrese. After a long period of art in the Eternal City where he left numerous testimonies of his art, such as the frescoes in the church of Sant'Andrea della Valle, he moved to Naples, where it reached full maturity expressive producing works of the utmost importance. And finally arrived in Malta in 1661, where he stayed forty years, working for the patrons of the island and for those Neapolitan and Italian. He  died in Valletta in 1699. The exhibition was inaugurated on the occasion of the opening of the book fair in Turin, which in this edition has as its guest of honor the Calabria region. It is titled " The Cavalier Calabrese Mattia Preti. Between Caravaggio and Luca Giordano ." It is a very important event that for the occasion has found a place in the magnificent rooms of this beautiful Savoy residence that for extension equals the palace of Versailles. The important exhibition is curated by two leading experts: Vittorio Sgarbi (curator) and Keith Sciberras, Professor of Art History at the University of Malta (co-curator ).
The exhibition runs through 40 masterpieces, carefully selected, presented together with important paintings by Caravaggio and Luca Giordano which document the sources and influences of  Mattia Preti's painting. The exhibition is divided into five sections: Musicians and gamblers; Stories and Emotions, Faces and protagonists, The triumphant way and Heroines and Virtue Stoica. It can not but excite the vision of these wonderful paintings. There are great and spiritual intensity canvases depicting religious scenes, in which he captures influence of Guercino, while the choral scenes acclimatized in the taverns and the musicians have that note of light and shade that recalls the technique of  Caravaggio of which Preti was a follower. It is not accident that the path opens with one of the most famous works of the Lombard painter : "Rest on the escape into Egypt " (1595-1596), from the Galleria Doria Pamphili in Rome. In the Excellent location of Venaria Reale are exposed a long series of works from about 25 prestigious public and private collections coming from Italy, Malta and Great Britain. A blast from the past to retrieve the artistic testimony of the great Baroque painter.

The queen of Art Deco at the Pinacothèque de Paris:Tamara de Lempicka.

From 18 april to 8 september 2013

Who better then Tamara De Lempicka (1898-1980) was able to represent the dynamism of the Roaring Twenties, loads of worldliness and effervescent cultural expressions that find space between the folds of the Cubist and Futurist movements? This talented woman signed the greatest masterpieces of the artistic movement called Art Deco, which was able to express the conceptual elegance through a series of paintings made primarily between 1925 and 1935. Tamara portrays this beautiful world and its protagonists: elegant men belonging to the high society, often nobles, and refined and sensual women. But at the same time does not disdain to depict still lifes and interiors. They are pictures from the bright and metallic colors against the backdrop of futuristic perspectives such as New York skyscrapers silhouetted against the sky. Woman with a strong personality, independent, unconventional, even she herself seems to dictate the rules of the world that surrounds her. Blessed with a fate that gave her an intense and overwhelming life of luxury and worldliness, builds on her personal experiences, on her clandestine love affairs, on her ambiguous tastes. Through the art she tells the world to which she belongs. Yet another exhibition curated by Gioia Mori, the main expert of the Polish artist's work, is displayed in the rooms of the Pinacothèque de Paris, a new and large exhibition complex which has won a prestigious place on the French cultural scene. With the collaboration of Victoria De Lempicka, Tamara 's daughter and president of the Art Heritage, and Marilyn Goldberg, President of the Museum Masters International, the exhibition opened on April 18, 2013 and will end on September 8. A retrospective that unlike the previous ones, presented in eight different cities among which London, Vienna, Milan and Rome at the Complesso del Vittoriano ), is enriched with 23 new works including 18 drawings and five paintings, made ​​between 1923 and 1925, "swept up " by Gioia Mori in France.
In all there are 107 works presented to the public in the course of this retrospective which aims to illustrate the Art Deco movement through the vibrant personality of its icon, risen to the rank of queen as capable of fully represent the spirit of the time.
Who would ever think today that early in her career, her works were severely criticized by the major Italian artists such as Carlo Carra and Ugo Ojetti? It was mainly the latter to crush the Milan exhibition of the artist at the gallery "Bottega di Poesia" in 1925 with two articles published in “L' Ambrosiano” and in “Il Convegno”. Carrà did not go light, calling her work the fruit of an ambitious woman who essentially had nothing new to offer than the post-war art scene. Carrà considered her membership to the female gender a handicap, believing (such heresy) that only men, by virtue of some kind of hypothetical superiority, were worthy to sacrifice their life to art. A restrictive and misogynist thought who fortunately did not influence the fate of a painter of such talent. In spite of the dire predictions Tamara De Lempicka, who has become a living legend for the international acclaim that had her adventurous life, today is celebrated through an exhibition of her magnificent paintings. True works of art that have the ability to arouse the desire to relive the magic of the twenties, fascinated by the lightness and vitality of that period, and by a projection into the future that belongs only to the free spirits.

Helmut Newton

White Women, Sleepless Nights, Big Nudes

6 March – 21 July 2013 
Palazzo delle Esposizioni - Rome

The genius of Helmut Newton was held in Rome at the Palazzo delle Esposizioni with a monograph where are exposed about 200 photographs drawn from the three major anthologies that have made him the greatest fashion designers of the twentieth century. After the success of the exhibition dedicated to the French photographer Robert Doisneau, the important Roman location hosts another international player of photographic art. The exhibition takes place on the second floor of the building, but we are not allowed to climb the monumental staircase as it is in the process of preparing a new production. Therefore we come to the second floor with an elevator. And now we are caught by the models' explosive sensuality immortalized by Newton's prying clicks. The walls of the loggia overlooking the central hall are covered with black and white posters where the female nude is the absolute protagonist. It's curious the combination of same subjects in fashion and nude version, where the location despite being identical ( in front of a car , a staircase, on a couch or in a small garden ) sees the model now fully dressed and in another portrayed in the identical pose but completely undressed. We proceed on the tour. The photos extracted from the three major anthology published on paper, “White Women”, “Sleepless Nights” and “Big Nudes”, are shown on colored walls fuchsia and turquoise. An effective color combination that turns on the black and white photographs and brings out the depth of the image. Models with perfect bodies lend themselves to give life to the photographer 's forbidden fantasies, often projected in intimate environments, like Villa d'Este, Paris, Manhattan. Sequences captured during the life of the professional photographer, many of which were published by major international fashion magazines such as Vogue and Vanity Fair. Others belong to the photographer's personal archive today property of the Helmut Newton Fundation of Berlin who helped to organize the exhibition. The first impact is a bit ' strong , immediate. Semi-nudity and transparencies alternate with subjects completely stripped, which express a sometimes refined and sometimes morbid eroticism. But we dont forget that Newton has been the first to introduce the nude into the dimension of fashion. 

Looking at the photographs is natural to ask whether it is an apotheosis of the female body beauty, an exaltation which unfortunately reduces women to mere object exhibition, a shell without a soul or thought. Not for nothing in some photo shoots Newton approaches them to perfectly made ​​up and dressed mannequins, plastic casings of human features and perfect proportions that confuse the eye. Newton crosses the measure bringing his art to the limit of provocation respect to the parameters established by public decency. In my opinion a little too much. Empty the woman of that natural reserve which makes she mysterious and unattainable in the eyes of the world. But Newton definitely likes to provoke and proves it fully and without reserve. So there are Sapphic scenes , erotic triangles or even staged crimes in which a woman's beauty overwhelms the victim dying . Nudity, transparencies, in some sets he can even wear his models small prosthesis covering injured or convalescent arts. But Newton is an artist. Through the photograph he expresses the conception of the scene immortalized, a thought that conceives decidedly the upstream space, that creates and cuts it, inscribing a circle in the center of the eye falls on overwhelmed by the expressive power of the subject. There are not scenes stolen from everyday life or in the spare time, to escape boredom, but the result of a great professionalism. The talent of the photographer focuses on the subject that emerges from the background with its exuberant sensuality. The extreme eroticism is always refined, perhaps because beauty is never vulgar when is expressed as a concept. The body speaks its language, of himself and of his being beyond thought and words. Some photographs refer to pose nude portrayed in Dali's paintings. To paraphrase the title of the film " anything under the dress " and refuting it, we can say that in this case the body has more value and expressiveness than the dress it wears.


Never Say the Eye is Rigid: Architectural 

The architectural designs of Daniel Libeskind are exposed at the Ermanno Tedeschi Gallery in Rome until 30 April. A traveling exhibition that will visit other major Italian and international cities.


A small gallery located in the Portico d'Ottavia, in the Jewish quarter of Rome, presents 52 drawings of the famous Polish-American architect. The name of Daniel Libeskind is linked to major architectural projects in the four corners of the earth, among which we mention the Jewish Museum in Berlin realised in 2001 and City Life, the new district of Milan which will see the rise in the coming years on the occasion of Expo of Milan, for which Libeskind has designed a residential tower in deconstructivist style, of which today he's the greatest exponent.A career built in the last decades, rewarded by a great international success. Despite the fame, the role of the committed artist has not stifled the humanity of a man above all friendly and willing to talk with the many students who attended the opening of this important cultural event.
Ermanno Tedeschi Gallery, with the support of Mapei, will lead in tour projects designed by Libeskind. After Rome, will be the turn of Milan, Turin, Tel Aviv and closing New York, where it will open an overall exhibition. They are drawings made by hand in black and white or colored with watercolors, some related to projects which saw the full realization as the extension by a prismatic glass of the Military History Museum in Dresden (2011), the cited above Jewish Museum in Berlin and a private house in deconstructivist style in Connecticut (2010).
Interesting drawings made with the drafting machine offering a futuristic ideal city, proposal submitted to the Plan of Urban Development in Berlin in 1987(City Edge Competition). For Libeskind design is an artistic expression, the means by which the artist give body to his own talent and voice to his soul. The passion began at a young age and goes well with the architectural profession to which he was directed by his mother who knew how to wisely recognize his innate creativity.

But let's get to the most important part of the exhibition: the Ground Zero Master Plan. The task of building on the ground where stood the twin towers destroyed in the attack in New York in 2001, has been assigned to him in 2003. Ground Zero will soon resurrect an area of ​​new dimensions, a tribute to the city and to the courage and ability of rebirth of the great American people. Heart and soul, memory fondation is the phrase written on the drawings. The heart and soul of the city and of the American people. The original project involved the construction of five towers, one of which is 1776 feet high, a number that refers to the year of the Declaration of Independence of the United States of America. The Freedom Tower will be higher than the Empire State Building. Through a study carried out on the daytime running lights it had to be illuminated at the point and on the day when the attack occurred. Little remains of he original project wich provided also decorative fountains in the center with small waterfalls of great effect, where the water becomed a symbol of life that regenerates itself. Art and symbolism in the modern age. A concept to be reassessed also in the urbanism of big cities.

Picasso. Masterpieces from  the Musée National Picasso of Paris. 

Milan, 20 September 2012-6 January 2013


Opens contemporaneously with the fashion week one of the most important event of the cultural season of Milan: Pablo Picasso’s exhibition in Palazzo Reale. An event promoted by the Assessorato of the Culture of the Commune of Milan, Palazzo Reale and 24 Cultura- Gruppo 24 ore,  that underlines the deep link between the town and Picasso and the interest of the citizens always showed towards his art.

The exhibition is cured by Anne Baldassari,  director of the Musée National Pablo Picasso of Paris where is conserved the biggest collection in the world of this great Spanish genius, that has become property of the National French Collection thanks to a law about donation. It’s an exhibition of big importance for the works of arts exposed, everyone representatives of a single and distinct creative period, a variegated collection that runs over all the artistically production, from  1901 to1972. A tour exhibition which have had as starting point Madrid and has chosen Milan as international location where definitively conclude, also if  Anne Baldassari, esteemed and  qualified expert of Picasso’s art refers to a possible but not jet definite stage in  Santiago of  Chile.

uomo con mandolino
It’s the third appointment in Milan in the bow of 70 years with the big Spanish artist’s works of art, after the show of 1953 inside the magnificent rooms of Palazzo Reale and the retrospective of 2001, presented immediately after the attempt at the twins towers of New York. If we consider the economic crisis the world is passing and the context where is inserted the present monographic exhibition, we can resume that these three important events come in historical peculiar circumstances, signed by political uncertainty and international confusion: the post war period, the twins towers’ attack, and the present global economical crisis.

la celestina
Under this view Picasso’s art has seen as a creative and propulsive component to get over economical and world crisis moments. A kind of miraculous elixir able to give hope in the future to the sensible soul, tried by dramatic and disastrous events whose harmful influence it suffers, through the reborn and the sublimation of art. That’s the organizers of the event’ s thought, who have noticed that the big success got by the two precedent exhibitions has brought a big energetic charge. So they expect that also in this circumstance will happen the same prodigy, attracting the interest of the public also in presence of a crisis that let neither time nor money to dedicate to the art.

The show brings in Milan 250 masterpieces. Part of them have been exposed in Milan in 1953 and now are property of the French National Collection. But there are also  many works of art  realized after 1953 until the dead of the artist, happened in 1973. It’s a  complete exhibition were take place  not only the masterpieces and the pictures better known to the public but also works that have never been exposed out of the Musée National Pablo Picasso of Paris. That’s why the international interest for this important cultural event that has attracted visitors from all over the world.

The initial section of the exhibition pays the homage to the first exhibition in Milan of 1953. To whose  realization has participated  Pablo Picasso selecting  personally works of art that took part of his private collection. The hall introduced by the show’s play bill contains a large photographic documentations relative to the works of preparations as well as  imagines of the works of art exposed and pieces of chronicle which wetness the great success of public. Photographs and documents come from  Senatore Reale’s collection, Picasso’s big friend and major organizer of the show that reconstruct the phases of this important and unforgettable event above all for the exhibition, for the first time in Italy, of the  monumental Guernica (1937) in the Sala delle Cariatidi,  dramatically devastated by bombings  in 1943.

la guernica

ritratto di Olga

We carry on in a labyrinth of paintings, sculptures, drawings, films and photographs. An chronological excursus that runs over the years of his long artistic production. Picasso rode the big  pictorial currents of 900, with a big attention to the cubism period becoming one of its bigger exponent.  The show  compares  the different techniques  used by Picasso, draws works of art of the blue and pink periods to those of the African research or proto cubism.  To  carry on then along the way  of Synthetic Cubism and Classic Cubism. Picasso was also a political and social man as demonstrate the big production relative to the period  of political involvement and the paintings about the war.  A long  succession  of  works of art until  his last  productions  before his dead in  1973. And the  spectators stay  extremely delighted with this show.

Paul come arlecchino
The surrealist paintings have a big impact,  the portraits of the women who have left  a deep sign in his life  as the  “Olga’s portrait” of 1918 and the “Dora Maar’s portrait” of 1937 which reproduces  the photographer’s face loved by the Andalusian artist. Gives emotion and makes tender  his son Paul’s imagine in the carnival  clothes of a little  arlecchino (Paul as Arlecchino of 1924) while  inspires distrust the portrait of the pimp blind in one eye of  “La Celestina” realized in 1904. To look  “man with mandolin” (1911), “two women that run in the seaside”  and “the  suppliant” (1937).

due donne che corrono sulla spiaggia

This  sensational whole of works gives the unique and  extraordinary possibility to compare the  major artistic phases of the  Modernity which have crossed all the  900, wetness by one genius. In occasion of the big return in Milan, is expected an exceptional multitude of public at this unique   anthological show dedicated to the  Spanish artist, undiscussed  protagonist of the art of  XX century, maybe the biggest.

20 september 2012

Valentina movie

From 30 May to 30 September 2012 - Palazzo Incontro in Rome

Palazzo Incontro in Rome hosts until 30 September an unusual and fascinating exhibition to discover the sensual heroine created in 1965 by Guido Crepax fanciful pencil, one of the most famous Italian comic designer. If she  was a real person Valentina today would be 70 years old, a fair lady with white hair and a sad and melancholy look hidden behind thick glasses. A star who walks along the avenue of the decline, regretting her passed youngness. It’s almost true. The young generation doesn’t know Valentina and her strange world, in balance between oneiric fantasy and pseudo reality perceived behind the lens of a camera.
Valentina Rosselli, born in 1942. To make a realist and credible character, Crepax give her a real document of identity, building around her a career as fashion photographer and love relationships where the sexuality has got a big libertine and homosexual component, a simple everyday life, a status as single and one son to grow up.  These are the characters that make of Valentina the symbol of the feminine emancipation of  60 and 70 years and of the generational conflict whose she becomes spokeswoman. The photographer Valentina tells about her world through the Italian and French fashion universe of the 60 years and the advertising, travelling (reality or in her dreams) to the most fascinating cities of the world (Milan, Venice, Rome,  Prague, New York). Valentina lives mentioning the culture of her time (quotations that come from Crepax big knowledge that ranges from pop art to jazz) so that she becomes expressive witness of her generation.
But Valentina is above all the expression of a strong, modern and  independent sexuality. In the 70 years she became  symbol of a refined eroticism endowed at the same time of a big psychological profile. In fact in her mind she lives the tension coming from the subconscious and from the tabù against she often have to fight. Valentina looks, observes, reflects upon the reality that surrounds her, that wraps and  involves her in unusual and strange  hallucinations.
The first drawing of the saga appeared in 1965 on Linus, another famous historical comic strip. Since then Crepax made about 1600 drawings. Valentina get a big success and becomes one of the most important character of the Italian comics. Today to celebrate the 70 birthday of Valentina the Province of Roma inside the project ABC (Art, Beauty and Culture) promotes together with the responsibles of  Archivies Crepax and with the collaboration of the journalist  Vincenzo Mollica a thematic exhibition where are exposed 120 original drawings to propose to the public the character of  Valentina and make know to the youngs the world and the technique of a genius of the comic design as has been Guido Crepax, the creator of the saga, died many years ago.
Valentina represented a change in the Italian comic panorama mostly for the novelty of the drawing structure, with its fragmentary construction character. Crepax was the precursory of a technique that broke the fixed schemes of the sketches using a cinematographic outline, managing to give movements or slowing to actions and sketches. Watching the drawings we can note how Crepax has adopted the decomposition of the action in many sketches, as the use of cinematographic technique. He drawn sketches of different form and dimension to separate the dream from the memory, the imagination from the reality. Crepax created a new graphic technique that was adopted by the following generation of comic designers.  Crepax inspired to the cinema also to choose the character of the protagonist who has the face of the famous star of  silent cinema Louise Brooks (1906 - 1985). A beauty that captured  in the age 20 the public with her deep dark eyes and her short black hair.  A fascinating and perturbing beauty, very different from the algid and diaphanous aspect of the girls of today. Crepax declared to have been captured by the beauty of the actress and to have choose her as model of femininity.
The exhibition tells about the born and the evolution of the character even if it doesn’t follow a chronically way. On the wall we can see gigantic designer’s drawings, sketches, and story board  and many scenographies and ambients drawn from the saga. Beside the shapes that reproduce Valentina, multimedia screams pay homage to the famous actress who inspired Crepax .We enter in his world, made of dreams and contamination with cinema, fashion, art and music. Very suggestive is the reproduction of his studio with the original objects and another one completely drawn. On the wall two drawn doors with a key-hole to watch the images prohibited. The shows goes on with some sections that document the cultural clime of the 60 years: fashion, advertising, the famous and smart cities mentioned in the sketches, pop art and music jazz which make the soundtrack to the saga.
This is an exhibition which celebrate comic as integrating part of the culture of a country, that accompany the generations and become mirror of their time. It’s important to preserve it from the oblivion and make a revival of the characters who have made its story. Today it’s pay homage to Valentina and to a new success of this saga.

10 september 2012

ANTINOO: The fascination of beauty

Until the 4 november in the archaeological site of  Villa Adriana of Tivoli is celebrated the memory of young Aninoo with a show that remands to his bond with Emperor Adriano and to the  diffusion of the myth of his beauty trhough the centuries.

Opened the last 5 April inside the Antiquarium of Villa Adriana, the glamorous archaeological  site of Tivoli today patrimony of Unesco, the show celebrates the close bond of affection that linked together Emperor Adriano with the young Antinoo through the exhibition of  50 precious historical discoveries, sculptures, relieves, stones and coins coming from the most important Italian and European museums.

The show remands the attention for the exceptional opening to the public of the place that  comprises the rests of the Antinoeion, grave- temple dedicated to Antinoo made built from  Adriano after the premature death of his young and staunch friend  happened for  drowning  in 130 a. C. while they went up the Nile river. Returning from Egypt in 133, Adriano, deeply grieved for his lost,  projected  in his honour a big  memorial building put along the monumental entrance that  conducted to the  vestibule, the Antinoeion.

The works of excavation made by the Soprintendenza between 2002 and 2005 put to the light  part of the perimetrical structure of the building and the area where the exedra rose, faced by  two temples  at that time separated by the  imposing obelisk that we find today  placed at the Pincio. Antinoo, young  from Bithynia of rare beauty passed to the history for his tender and faithful friendship with Emperor Adriano, a bond that re-echoes in the pages of Marguerite Yourcenar’s famous book “Memory of Adriano”.And it’s  his  charm of beardless boy, of  sculptural ephebe coming from the east of Asia that  inspired the fantasy of several  artists who wanted to  sculpture on  marble and on bronze his tender  profile and his shining beauty, as that one of  a  divinity. Also Adriano thought to find  in his face  the features of a pagan god and in this way he wanted that  Antinoo was represented in the  statues that  adorned  the Antinoeion.
The exhibition is divided in four thematic sections through  a chronological way.In the first section the imagine sculptured of Antinoo is near that one of Emperor Adriano. Marbles, busts, stones, medals and coins reproduce the face of the two historical  personages to celebrate a bond that goes beyond the limits of time and space. Antinoo’s  ephebe grace  is reproduced in several remarkable sculptures of plastic  perfection as the bust of marble coming from Vatican Museums, the bronze of Archaeological Museum of Florence, that one in marble of the Boncompagni Ludovisi Collection and at the end that one coming from Louvre Museum.

The second section focuses the Antinoo’s deification. His beauty considered as well as that of a demigod,  is lent from the artists as source of inspiration to represent and impress on marbles  the perfect proportions  of body of Apollo, Mercury or of the  priest Attis. Looking at the statues that withdraw him as Mercury, with wings on the temples, or in Dionysus childisches features, we are captured by the serene harmony of his face, so tender and evasive that reminds to the divine composure of pagan gods, so far and unreachable. With regard to this we mention  the beautiful  statue of  Antinoo- Mercuriy finded  in Villa Adriana of Tivoli, today hosted in the Ermitage of San Pietroburgo, and the head of Antinoo- Dionysus in white marble coming  from the Townley Collection hosted in the British Museum of London.

The third section is focused on the recent discoveries of the Antinoeion of Villa Adriana and  so on the representation of Antinoo in the guise of Osiris. Adriano had deified his favourite with the most important Egyptian god who, as the myth tells, revived from the waters of Nile. The reference to the God who rises from the waters hides perhaps the hope that the so loved and lamented young can one day come back and embrace his emperor.The reference to Egyptian culture and religion is found also on the walls of the temples facing the area where the exedra was set, where we can see bas- relieves with subjects that remind to the above mentioned style. Very precious is the splendid portrait of Antinoo –Osiris in red quartzite lent  for the occasion by the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen di Dresda.

But his myth survives to Adriano, to time and to history. In fact the last section put the accent on the lucky of Antinoo through the centuries and on the influence that his name had on the artistic production until more recent time, rose as symbol of ephebe grace and young-looking beauty, lent to the art that wanted to mould the material at his image. A fascination that continues over the time. We can admire the precious volume of the book "Viaggio pittorico di Villa Adriana" by Agostino Penna of 1831 - 36, that  contains a beautiful portrait of  Antinoo, today  preserved in the Sala della Rotonda of Vatican Museums. But the name of  Antinoo reaches  higher destinations,  resounds in the sidereal spaces so that it is fixed among the stars, celebrated as a young demigod  among the  constellations of  the  sky.

4 September 2012
Cycling, cubo - futurism and the fourth dimension: Jean Metzinger’s “At the cycle-race track”

Exemplar representation of Cubist language, Jean Metzinger’s “at the cycle-race track” is undoubtedly a masterpiece.  After more than 50 years, since 1945 when it was acquired by the multi-millionaire Peggy Guggenheim and went to be part of the magnificent modern art collection of the first half of the 20th century, today the portrait reveals its secret. The sportsman portrayed by the painter is the cyclist Charles Crupelandt, immortalised while he covered the  final yards that separates him from the finishing post along the Parigi- Roubaix pavé that he won in 1912.  From 8 June to 16 September the portrait is the focal point of the  art- exhibition “Cycling, cubo-futurism and the fourth dimension: Jean Metzinger’s “At the cycle-race track” held at the  Peggy Guggenheim Collection of Venice. The exhibition is realized by the art historian and restorer Erasmus Weddingen, the first who discovered the cyclist’s identity and the year of  realization. It’s a retrospective which celebrates the union between art e cycling, sport that at the dawns of 20th century exited the souls of keens of the two wheels inspired at the same time several masterpieces of the European avant -guard art.
 Jean Metzinger,
"At the cycle- race track",
The artist lives inside the society and shares its passions. In this way art finds food from the reality that surrounded it becoming eye- witness of important sporting events. Principle theorist of the Cubist movement and writer togheter with Albert Gleizer  of the first major treatise on this new art form Du "Cubisme" in 1912, Jean Metzinger was the first to transfer to the avant -guard his passion for the cycling races. “At the cycle-race track” in fact  is the first cubist work of art that represents a sporting event, followed by two others oil paintings on the same subject today exposed contemporary at the art-exhibition with a drawing about the fourth dimension. In the oil paintings “at the cycle-racing track” Metzinger wanted to catch the elusive and stop the time with his paint-brush, so that he managed to give body and thickness to the fleeting moment that cubists defined the fourth dimension.
Fortunato Depero,
Cyclist through the town, 1945
So begins a deep reflection about movement and dynamism concept and about  space- time relation inside the conceptualism of one object’s three dimensional projection that come off in the projection of the same object in four dimension. In its aim was followed by other illustrious cubist current exponents as Marcel Duchamps whose works are linked to the theme of space elasticity, and by Italian Futurists as Umberto Boccioni (Dynamism of a cyclist 1913), Mario Sironi (The cyclist,1916), Fortunato Depero (Cyclist through the town, 1945) and  Gino Severini, who in their turn chose the cycling as subject of their oil paintings expressing their passion for the sport.
Umberto Boccioni,
Dynamism of a cyclist 1913

Important collateral event of the show has been a meeting  titled  “Records of the Roubaix” which has involved some famous cyclists as Francesco Moser who have witnessed  their experience in this engaging and tiring French race. To celebrate the above mentioned race the principal media partner,  the “Gazzetta dello sport”, has put at show disposal its own archives, as well as photographs  of the day which  represent the velodrome and champions of various editions. At this time we ask ourselves if  is just cycling the principal starring
of the event because there are exposed many racing cycles, old and new, coming from the  Museum of bicycle “La belle échappée” of La Fresnaye-sur-Chédouet (France), and from the “Museo del Ciclismo” di Madonna del Ghisallo.  But  it’s not all. In one of the rooms there is a singular cycle’s prototype put at public disposal, designed by the University of Tubinga (Germany) to illustrate the theories of relativity formulated by Albert Einstein.

Coming at the end to Cyclosna, cold and complex sculpture created intentionally for the event by the Swiss artist Paul Wedmer and exposed in the Sculpture Nasher Garden, linked to the theme of the eternity  of time and the connection between the past, the present and the future and that remainds to the atmosphere of cycling race.

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