GUERNICA, ICONA DI PACE
2017 GUERNICA, ICONA DI PACE
“.....until the doors of hate fall” (Pablo Neruda)
The Guernica cartoon, which I only rediscovered after lengthy research, originated from a fundamental value - friendship. It was friendship that sparked an innovative project involving one of the greatest art patrons, Nelson Rockefeller, one of the 20th-century's most influential and brilliant artists, Pablo Picasso, and the weaver Jacqueline de la Baume Durrbach, who was able to restate and "weave" a painting using the ancient art of tapestry.
The project started when Picasso, encouraged by Rockefeller, sought to give new life to Guernica, a richly symbolic work and one of the most powerful pieces condemning the effects of war. Guernica is the first of a series of 26 cartoons that Durrbach, under the guidance and supervision of Picasso, weaved, turning paintings into tapestries. This unique collaboration in 20th-century art took a significant period of time, from 1955 to 1973.
This absolutely wonderful story, which we wish to tell, hinged on a very special synergy between three brilliant people - Rockefeller, Picasso, Durrbach - that is so masterful it is impossible to determine precisely where the work of each begins and ends.
The Guernica painting was originally created for the 1937 World's Fair in Paris, but was then sent across Europe, South America and the United States, where it went on display at MoMA in 1958. So much travelling left the painting fragile and led Rockefeller to involve his friend Picasso in its transformation into a tapestry. The Rockefeller archive still has records of the agreement and related details from April 1955. These specify how the tapestry would be purchased and that it was supposed to be created under the complete guidance and supervision of Picasso, who also wholeheartedly agreed on the 11 chosen colours.
"Picasso finds the tapestry a masterpiece", wrote the editeur for the commissioning of the tapestries, Petronella Van Doesburg, in a letter to Rockefeller dated 13 February 1956. Picasso was so taken by the work - enchanté was the precise word she used - he decided only the Durrbachs would ever be allowed to weave his works!
The Guernica cartoon should thus not be seen merely as a one-off, but as the start of a unique project. Our goal is not only to tell the story of the cartoon, but also to use unusual, interactive material - maybe even holograms and 3D images - to help the viewer understand that this work is not an illustration of the event, but a representation of a series of complex images that the viewer needs guidance in understanding. This will show Guernica must be read backwards, from right to left, like the world at war Picasso is seeking to portray. In multiplying the viewpoints, Picasso seems to segment the space. A triangle in the centre of the work initially escapes the viewer, but guides one's gaze towards the light. This series of visual stimuli help us, once recognised and understood, in this battle against the evil that is starkly represented here by war.
Displaying the Guernica cartoon for the first time in the Senate of Italian Republic in Rome in 2017, on the 80th anniversary of the creation of the painting, and telling this amazing story of three brilliant 20th-century people is a statement of the fundamental values of peace and friendship, values that were essential to the creation of these extraordinary works, of which the Guernica cartoon is the start.
At this moment in history, confirming the importance of the values that underscore this creation and the philanthropic intent of the whole process, based on Nelson Rockefeller's firm belief in the “transformative power of art", is akin to reaffirming the importance of "beauty and the creative spirit" for all of us and the power of art to convey values.
Senato della Repubblica, Sala Zuccari 14 dicembre 2017- 8 gennaio 2018
Magi 900 , museo delle eccellenze artistiche e storiche
Pieve di Cento , 13 gennaio - 4 marzo 2018
Beginning with the analysis of two works by Titian preserved in Czech Republic , namely the so-called Vanitas belonging to the Prague Castle Collections and The Flaying of Marsias housed in the Archbishop’s Palace in Kromêriz, the exhibition and the catalogue deal with problematic aspects, too often circumvented, involving the artistic and the existential life of the Cadore-born painter through extensive documentation.
Presenting these works alongside the Master’s famous masterpieces, such as Flora from the Uffizi Gallery, the book particularly delves into the preparation of the model inside the workshop, the reality of the model, the production of replicas, the success of the artist, while also involving issues related to the intention and manipulations of self-portraits.
Research has been completed with a detailed illustration of the Master’s seal and, for the first time, an accurate critical edition of the diploma issued by the Emperor Charles V in 1533 that granted Titian the titles of Count Palatine and Cavaliere , both preserved of Palazzo della Magnifica Comunitá del Cadore.
Professor Lionello Puppi
It is said murderers always return to the scene of their crime, perhaps, to view again the consequences of their savagery or simply to feel once more the excitement of that moment. Professor Lionello Puppi and Serena Baccaglini- the admirable conceivers and curators of the exhibition Tiziano, Vanitas . The poet of the image and the shade of beauty, at the Prague Castle- wanted in this case to return stubbornly to the scene of “crime” committed against Rudolph II and the late 16th -century intellectuality of Bohemia, which had carefully and wonderfully gathered together an enviable collection of Titian’s works.
Clearly it was impossible to reconstruct an entire patrimony dispersed by the monarch’s courtesans on his death, and later with the Thirty Years’ War , but an attempt was made to reconstruct some of the precious atmosphere of the great painter from Cadore. Titian therefor, returns to Prague Castle after four decades and again takes over the rooms where he “ lived” with his works, showing off, with a hint of shamelessness, his Vanitas and recounting his human story through his intense self-portraits.
We rediscover intact a fascination with the feminine, the magical sensuality of Titian’s brushstrokes in the face of the young women intently admiring themselves in the mirror, in the same way that it is possible to glimse in Apollo and Marsyas the premonitory signs of later spiritual and mystical expressiveness in which colour would lose its compactness and edges and profiles become more indistinct and uncertain.
But it is the women in the moment of “Vanitas” who have the lion’s share at Prague Castle- in particular Violante Palma , the Flora - and who remind us the importance of the female figure in the artistic and human journey of the artist, along with his beloved wife and daughter Cecilia and Lavinia, and surrounded by the models and numerous lovers of his close artistic friends Aretino and Sansovino.
But this exhibition also reintroduces us to Titian “ the political painter, ” a man with relationships and friendships with the powerful of his time and, above all, with the man on whose empire the sun never set, Charles V, who made him a Count Palatine, sealing this honour with a parchment that, remarkably, we are able to admire in the Castle alongside the artist’s original personal seal.
I would like to thank in particular my friend Serena Baccaglini , who pursued with indomitable tenacity and extraordinary skill the project of bringing Titian - the go-to painter not only for the Italian courts but for the clients in Spain and elsewhere in Europe back to Czech Republic where, over the centuries, he gained innumerable admirers.
Italian Ambassador in Prague Aldo Amati
EL GRECO IN ITALIA
EL GRECO IN ITALY METAMORPHOSIS OF A GENIUS
The biggest retrospective on the Italian period of El Greco, of his metamorphosis in contact with the great artists of the '500 from Tiziano to Tintoretto, with the presentation of artworks exhibited for the first time.
An international scientific committee, chaired by prof. Lionello Puppi to deepen the unique language developed by El Greco, who abandons the rigidity of the Byzantine style for a free brushstroke and intense colors, a prelude to modernity.
"El Greco inventor of modern painting": my contribution proposes to enhance the original style of El Greco that inspired the avant-garde of the '900, anticipating contemporary art.
I curated the special section in which I got to exhibit a world premiere, the Cartoon by Picasso of the Demoiselles d'Avignon, created with Jacqueline de la Baume Durrbach who weaved the tapestry acquired by Nelson Rockefeller .
"Cubism has Spanish origins and I am his inventor. We must look for the Spanish influences in Cézanne and observe the influence of El Greco in his work. No Venetian painter except El Greco made cubist artworks "
The uniqueness of this exhibition and its scientific depth have contributed to an increase in the knowledge of the great artist and his Italian period, with the presence of over 80,000 visitors.
Treviso - Casa dei Carraresi 24 ottobre 2015 - 10 parile 2016
FRANCIS BACON & BOHUMIL HRABAL
FRANCIS BACON & BOHUMIL HRABAL
"Modern prose cannot be written without a certain degree of erudition, without the knowledge of what is happening in the other fields of art, especially in the fine arts. Fine arts and literature are inseparable."
Bohumil Hrabal, 1970
Two extraordinary artistic genii: the Irish painter Francis Bacon and the Czech writer Bohumil Hrabal. Two creative forces that have never encountered each other previously are presented one alongside the other, in an original artistic dialogue that uses different means of expression.
An imaginary dialogue between two artists that are very similar, not only from the artistic point of view but also existentially: if Bacon had been a writer he would have been Hrabal and if Hrabal had been a painter he would surely have been Bacon. Hrabal's texts on art, some of which unpublished, are the connecting thread of the exhibition.
The exhibition was inaugurated by Vittorio Sgarbi, who presented for the first time a special work of art: a monumental oil painting by the Italian apprentice of the great Velasquez, Pietro Martire Neri, (1591-1661) who copied in the mid-seventeenth century the famous portrait of Pope Innocent X at the Doria Pamphili Gallery in Rome.
Here for the first time Bacon's drawings are shown together with the portrait of Pope Innocent X by Velasquez's Italian apprentice, Pietro Martire Neri, that re-elaborates the Master's extraordinary masterpiece. This portrait by Velasquez obsessed Bacon for years and has inspired 45 oil paintings and a series of drawings that using varied techniques re-elaborate the famous papal portrait that Bacon considered to be the most important art work in the world.
Praga, Gate Gallery 18 maggio 2012 - 22 luglio 2012
San Paolo del Brasile, Museo Paço das Artes 15 giugno- 7 settembre 2014
FACE TO FACE WITH THE BULL
A symbol of power and of violence, the nature of the beast which is in opposition to human rationality which sublimates the sensuality of the monster and his vulnerability: the tauromaquia is a passion that has influenced many artists, from Picasso to Salvador Dalì, from Francesco Goya to Fernando Botero.
But this is already well known. Perhaps less well known is that as symbol of the eternal conflict between man and beast, as found in common between many latin countries, it has also inspired many Czech artists such as Emil Filla and Karel Čapek in particular but also Carlos Aires, Karel Myslbek, Jan Konůpek, Jitka Válová, Linka Procházková.
What are the archetypes that draw the threads of such fascination to a similar theme?
Animal strength and energy, shrewd courage and fertility, interpreted each time through each individual artist's sensibility: to Goya it was the means by which he could demonstrate his opposition to the political powers of his time, and for Picasso it became the driving force that inspired the preparatory drawing of Guernica, whereas for Dalì it became a rite. But for all, the tauromaquia is charged with a powerful symbolic matrix: the suffering of an era, a theme that has never been so contemporary.
Praga, Obecni Dum , Exhibition Halls of the Municipal House novembre 2011 - aprile 2012
San Paolo del Brasile FAAP Museo Fundaçao Armando Alvarez Penteado maggio - giugno 2014
Wroclaw - Polonia, Museo dell’Architettura luglio- novembre 2014
AN ARTISTIC FRIENDSHIP
AN ARTISTIC FRIENDSHIP
narrated by Lucia Bosé
"I would have liked to have been Luis Miguel Dominguìn. Now that really is art."
Friendship is the value that has guided a great part of the decisions in my life.
I met Lucia Bosé I discovered an extraordinary story of friendship, human and intellectual, between the famous Italian actress, her husband Luis Miguel Dominguìn and Pablo Picasso, and I have decided to tell it.
The life of Picasso runs mainly along the paths of friendship and it is really in the works designed and made for his friends that you can perceive the mysterious aspects of the man.
From this came the idea of an exhibition that retraces a decade-long friendship based on admiration, complicity and artistic affinity between Picasso and the Dominguìn-Bosé family.
A journey inside the intimate collection of Lucia and her family with original pieces shown for the first time and the only architectural project of the great artist, where artistic memories, amongst which are drawings, collages, prints, ceramics and photographs, mixed with personal items such as a sign that was displayed in Lucia's kitchen
"Picasso's plates do not go in the dish-washer!"
Padova, Museo Civico al Santo, Spazio TIndaci
28 ottobre 2006 -14 gennaio 2007
Cortina, Sondrio, Caserta, Verona, Milano, Cognac (Francia), Santiago (Cile)
The great passion for Modigliani and Prague, and the curiosity, one hundred years after the Salon d'Automne in Paris in 1912, of a meeting between two great artists that brought the discovery of abstract art to the world, Modigliani through his sculpture and František Kupka with his works Amorpha, Fugue in Two Colours and Warm Chromatics.
These were the major incentives that led me to undertake a major project of research, dialogue and comparisons with two different voices in order to create a unique exhibition that show-cased the indivisible link between genius and human sensibility.
Modigliani's works are from the Museum of Israel in Jerusalem, from the Estorick Collection in London, from private collections in Germany, France, the United States and Italy.
Furthermore the collaboration with the Modigliani Institute in Rome has allowed us to present for the first time in Prague original documents from the Legal Archives, through which it has been possible to narrate the life of the great artist, with original historical photographs and prints on canvas.
In his drawings, Modigliani managed to capture reality through signs and give life to an idea. In the show there is even the very rare painting that depicts Celso Lagare - one of Modigliani's magical works: a few lines that capture the essence of the stroke.
Prague, Exhibition Hall of the Municipal House, 9 dicembre 2010 – 28 febbraio 2011
DALI' THE DIVINE ILLUSTRATOR
THE DIVINE ILLUSTRATOR
"Every morning when I wake up, I feel a supreme pleasure, the pleasure of being Salvador Dalì"
Salvador Dalì, the genial and eccentric artist of multiform expressiveness, chose himself as the central theme in all his activities: painter, sculptor, illustrator, poet, film-maker with his friend Buñuel, but always, fortunately, Dalì.
Little has been said however of his talent as an engraver, work which occupied him for around a quarter of a century, through a multitude of materials and techniques.
The discovery of gold objects forged by Dalì has revealed itself as being extraordinarily rich: medal-coins created by the artist with the effigies of himself and his companion Gala, sacred symbols and imaginary beings.
Unique objects created by Dalì's multifaceted genius alongside a rich collection of Flordalì, original drypoint engravings of flowers and fruit, together with the last drawings made by the great artist, "the search for immortality", an exclusive gem of the exhibition. Infused by a dream-like quality they render homage to the material and to life, in keeping with that which Valéry has called "the combining forces of the spirit".
Padova, Museo al Santo 26 settembre - 14 novembre 2004
NOT ONLY WOMEN
Growing up as a Photographer
"The human body is the best image of the human soul"
I have been close to Comte in an enchanting city such as Prague: seeing as he sees and portrays the world through his camera is a moving experience.
With a speed that is his alone he manages to transmit a tireless passion. Only true talent can allow the spectator not only to perceive but also to "feel" the image.
Perhaps that portrait had already been shot a thousand times inside his mind.... anyway a great photographer is also a good psychologist, as were Cecil Beaton, Cartier-Bresson.
His photographs show us bodies, faces that we recognise, but they never stop at the surface of the skin as could be so easily done, rather they push us further: we feel the poetry in the eyes, the narrative of a portrait artist of immense class for whom words will never manage to render the sense of what the photographer manages to capture with his lens, and here those images become unique icons.
This exhibition, with around a hundred of the most significant photographs from the thirty-year career of the great photographer, shines a spotlight on his ability to capture a moment of our times and impose his world view onto it.
Not only women
Lucca, Lu.C.C.A., 20 novembre 2012 - 23 gennaio 2011
Praga, Leica Gallery Prague, 18 febbraio - 3 aprile 2011
Milano, Triennale di Milano, 10 maggio - 3 luglio 2011
“Giuseppe Pino grasps the poetry of a look, that enigma that each of us has in the middle of our faces, just above the nose".
François-René Simon, 2003
Giuseppe Pino has always been a great artistic love of mine. His photography "reveals" the protagonists of the worlds of art, politics and culture through invisible traits: fascination, intelligence, sense of humour. But also ambition, insecurity, a sense of superiority to the earthly world.
120 portraits for a gallery of faces that penetrate the mystery of the soul. The composition of the image and the photographic editing reveal the originality of an artist that is able to make the image "come alive".
Daniel Soutif, the curator for exhibitions at the Centre Pompidou in Paris who I involved in the presentation of this exhibition, has knowingly outlined with a few essential words the greatness of this artist. "That which Pino offers is simply the fascination that he has been able to apply to his prestigious subjects that, finally and thanks to him, look at us."
Padova, Museo Civico di Piazza del Santo, 11 ottobre 2003 – 25 gennaio 2004
JAMES WHITLOW DELANOv
EMPIRE. IMPRESSIONS FROM CHINA.
"My work is entirely uncensored and unalterated....I have a point of view and a motivation for every undertaking."
James Whitlow Delano
Ten years travelling to and from China, around 50 trips with a Leica M2 and 35mm lenses which force him to move in towards each subject. The lens is able to boldly assume a point of view, a committed photographer who works according to his own urgent need to document the world, beyond the confines of a country that does not easily allow itself to be shown.
This is the thing that struck me most about the art of Delano when I saw his work at the Triennale of Milan. These are the reasons why I decided to take him with me to Padua and Venice.
Seventy-seven images that perfectly render the sense of the immediacy of the moment seized, and grasp the essence of the people and the perception of a reality removed from time, like pieces of a mosaic that defines the contradictions of a life suspended between a nostalgic vision of the past and an exasperated modernity.
He is one of the first people with the courage to propose a fascinating and suggestive reportage on the poetic potential of daily life and to communicate that which up to that moment had never left the confines of the country.
Venezia, Schola dei Battioro e Tioraro, Campo San Stae, 5 - 28 maggio 2006
Padova, Spazio Tindaci, 15 maggio - 8 giugno 2006
"There are many old musicians, as there are many old artists. Their passion is my motivation for continuing. Perhaps that is just what makes me carry on. It is a definite passion for doing what you love doing."
I met Herman Leonard and the first thing that struck me were his incredible stories about jazz and so I decided that I would bring him to Italy with a personal show that would reflect all the wonder of this great interpreter of contemporary photography.
His two great loves: photography and jazz music: the smoky and suffused atmospheres of night clubs in Harlem and Broadway animated by jazz improvisations portrayed through the eyes of their protagonists: Louis Armstrong, Frank Sinatra, Duke Ellington, Billie Holliday, Dizzy Gillespie.
Around sixty unmistakable and unique black and white original photographs created from 1948 and accompanied by over a hundred images that put in context jazz in the 40's and 50's. Historical documents, personal, vivid and explosive testimonials of an era, inserted into the splendid framework of the Palazzo del Monte di Pietà in Padua, within the events review “AN EMOTION CALLED JAZZ”.
Padova, Palazzo del Monte di Pietà, 13 ottobre 2002 - 26 gennaio 2003