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Arte | Economia

Inaugurated in May 2010 to great public acclaim, and placed in receivership in May 2012 for budgetary imbalances, the MAXXI is currently in the laborious process of getting back on its feet with a different board of directors. This text is a cautionary tale of over-ambitious projects, managerial shortcomings, erratic funding and  political decisions taken without a detailed analysis of costs and benefits for the community. In the incongruous position of being a state-owned museum run by a private foundation, the MAXXI was launched without a clear, convincing cultural raison d'être, compared to similar bodies which boast a greater social utility.Alessandro Monti reconstructs the political and bureaucratic implications of creating a museum "on paper", and the controversial aspects of an administration that had to contend with an excess of competing museum spaces and an unsuitable container: designed by renowned Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid at a cost to the Treasury of over one hundred and eighty million euro, the imposing concrete building has proved to be more spectacular than functional.This in-depth investigation of the MAXXI's crucial issues and weaknesses concludes with a series of possible solutions to the current problems, and various proposals to improve future performance, rethinking the Foundation's strategic priorities and overall game plan in organisational, operational and relational terms. Moving forward, it will be important to ensure greater transparency and get the staff more involved in the management of the museum, as well as taking a more selective approach to the exhibition programme, capitalising above all on the permanent collections. and finally making the MAXXI a national landmark.
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Il MAXXI a raggi X

Indagine sulla gestione privata di un museo pubblico

Alessandro Monti

publisher: Johan & Levi

pages: 96 pagine

Inaugurated in May 2010 to great public acclaim, and placed in receivership in May 2012 for budgetary imbalances, the MAXXI is currently in the laborious process of getting back on its feet with a different board of directors. This text is a cautionary tale of over-ambitious projects, managerial shortcomings, erratic funding and  political decisio
Film festivals have played an important role in stimulating cultural growth in Italy since the inauguration of the Venetian prototype in 1932, offering the public an opportunity for contact with different and distant experiences. The proliferation of such events on national territory as from the 1980s has made them a key channel for development of the audiovisual market and the boosting of local economies, giving rise to marked competition between festivals and the strenuous pursuit of financing. In the present-day context of severely reduced public funding and a general cutback on private investment, the future of the film festival system is necessarily bound up with an understanding of the economic spinoffs involved and culture in general. How is such value to be measured? The study presented here develops a model, applicable also to other spheres, that highlights the ability of festivals to provide stimulus for the local economy by triggering virtuous processes of increased demand for goods and services in the areas involved. This in turn means a return on investment capable also of attracting private backers, whose decisions are inevitably linked to a return, directed or indirect but in any case evident and immediate. In order to complete the overview of the economic value of festivals, this time in more specific terms, attention is also focused on their technical role of the manifestations in the sector of film production and promotion, above all for independent films.
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I festival del cinema

Quando la cultura rende

publisher: Johan & Levi

pages: 132 pagine

Film festivals have played an important role in stimulating cultural growth in Italy since the inauguration of the Venetian prototype in 1932, offering the public an opportunity for contact with different and distant experiences. The proliferation of such events on national territory as from the 1980s has made them a key channel for development of
Like a virulent virus that spreads like wildfire, art collecting can lead those infected to authentic excesses like clearing out their homes to make room for works and spending entire fortunes through a longing for possession so strong as to become irresistible. What strikes the spark? A bent for financial speculation, pure intellectual delight or the desire to become someone by building up social prestige on the foundations of art. While there are many possible reasons and approaches, from militancy to passion, putting together a collection is in any case a pathway of self-knowledge and discovery. Il piacere dell’arte offers an overview of contemporary collecting in Italy, which has become an increasingly authoritative undertaking in recent times by virtue not only of the enterprise and initiative involved but also of the ever-greater planning that characterizes many collections. Starting from the fundamental historical background and an examination of the fertile terrain out of which outstanding figures like Giorgio Franchetti, Giuseppe Panza and Marcello Levi emerged and arriving at their contemporary counterparts, the book also seeks to identify the causes of the “lack of modernity” of Italian collecting, hampered by heritage restrictions and one of Europe’s highest rates of VAT. While these bureaucratic and fiscal impediments work on the one hand to obstruct dialogue with the institutions (unlike what happens across the Atlantic, where donations to museums are incentivized by tax relief), on the other they give rise to the strong development of private initiative and foster the opening of numerous foundations to the public. This is the most peculiar feature of the Italian panorama, a complex and multifaceted reality whose potential proves all the more interesting to examine by virtue of its social aspects and organic character.
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Il piacere dell'arte

Pratica e fenomenologia del collezionismo contemporaneo in Italia

Marianna Agliottone, Adriana Polveroni

publisher: Johan & Levi

pages: 264 pagine

Like a virulent virus that spreads like wildfire, art collecting can lead those infected to authentic excesses like clearing out their homes to make room for works and spending entire fortunes through a longing for possession so strong as to become irresistible. What strikes the spark? A bent for financial speculation, pure intellectual delight or
Conceptual Art was one of the most important movements of the second half of the 20th century. Starting from its origins in the 1960s and the principles formulated by Dan Graham, Joseph Kosuth, Sol LeWitt and Lawrence Weiner, Alberro addresses its specifically New York trajectory through the career of Seth Siegelaub, who unquestionably played a key role. An eccentric, multifaceted art dealer, Siegelaub employed wholly unconventional methods of promotion to support artists who seemed to create works out of nothing, sponsored them with shrewd and diplomatic business acumen, and paved the way for the appearance of a new type of actor on the art scene, the freelance curator. Alberro offers an unprecedented overview of materials and reviews regarding the most important works, embedding Conceptual Art in the social context of rebellion against traditional cultural institutions, commercialization and the dawn of the globalized world. A new perspective emerges, however, from his meticulous reconstruction. In actual fact, this movement had no intention whatsoever of rejecting the market but rather aimed at revolutionizing and conquering it. It was to this end, for example, that Siegelaub founded Image Art Programs for Industry Inc., a firm that used contemporary art to confer added value on companies seeking social visibility, and drew up theArtist’s Reserved Rights Transfer and Sales Agreement, a new type of contract aimed at limiting the overwhelming power of collectors, galleries and museums and increasing the rights of artists. In the end, this instrument involuntarily set the seal on the wedding of art and capitalism.
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Arte Concettuale e strategie pubblicitarie

Alexander Alberro

publisher: Johan & Levi

pages: 216 pagine

Conceptual Art was one of the most important movements of the second half of the 20th century. Starting from its origins in the 1960s and the principles formulated by Dan Graham, Joseph Kosuth, Sol LeWitt and Lawrence Weiner, Alberro addresses its specifically New York trajectory through the career of Seth Siegelaub, who unquestionably played a key
Museum S.p.a. is not a book on the Guggenheim Museum or indeed on museums in general but a pamphlet that reveals the perverse mechanisms of art through the example of a museum transformed into a multinational. The museum in question was the New York Guggenheim and its diabolic planner a man named Tom Krens. The formula was simple and wholly in line with the times. Art was a commodity like all the others and to be exploited as such for profit. The speculative bubble was on target once again. The coupling of art and business was now acceptable and the Guggenheim began to open branches all over the world. But can art be treated like a Big Mac or a packet of Corn Flakes? What are the consequences of this absurd plan after the outbreak of the world-wide economic crisis? Paul Werner worked at the New York Guggenheim for nine years and went through this epoch-making change on the inside. A specialist in contemporary art, he was suddenly required to be an expert on everything from Chinese and African art to Armani clothes, motorcycles and even Vaseline. This short, incandescent text takes the lid off that bizarre postmodern museum to reveal its internal dynamics, shedding completely unprecedented light on the path that museums – all museums – have ended up taking over the last twenty years, a slippery slope whose disastrous consequences are clear today. On these ashes, with great acumen and fierce passion, the author indicates a new and exciting path towards a future yet to be constructed.
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Museo S.p.A.

La globalizzazione della cultura

Paul Werner

publisher: Johan & Levi

pages: 80 pagine

Museum S.p.a. is not a book on the Guggenheim Museum or indeed on museums in general but a pamphlet that reveals the perverse mechanisms of art through the example of a museum transformed into a multinational. The museum in question was the New York Guggenheim and its diabolic planner a man named Tom Krens. The formula was simple and wholly in line
A British artist sells all his belongings on eBay. A Dutch colleague analyzes business culture through his own initiatives. An American prints banknotes and finds a way to spend them. A Swiss sells his invitation to take part in Manifesta. The idea that art and business are incompatible now seems to be wholly superseded. Many contemporary artists not only express their views on the market and the economic implications of art through the media but also use their art to reflect on or parody economic mechanisms in the wake of iconic figures of the 20th century like Marcel Duchamp, Yves Klein, Marcel Broodthaers and Joseph Beuys. Hence the birth of “imaginary economics” – a term indicating alternatives to the institutional paradigms of economics – for those not content with the answers to be found in the cosy rooms of dominant economic thought. The relationship between art and business certainly does not appear to favour the former. On the one hand, given the slender earnings of most artists, the economy could be regarded from their standpoint as a negative force. The artist is generally a victim of the economic system or at best forced to submit to it. On the other, the financial community makes use of art like a duster to give lustre and cultural prestige to company reputations through sponsorship or the creation of collections. Moreover, the symbolic production of companies is often fuelled by the images of artists whose works are not protected by copyright. Olav Velthuis seeks to demonstrate the existence of a new balance between art and business where the art is no longer the victim but becomes an unusual source of knowledge about the market economy. After a brief historical overview, he analyzes the various attitudes of artists and shows how the stances they adopt towards the economic system can be critical, positive and even playful, as though to call into question the presumed aura of seriousness that surrounds the market.
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Imaginary economics

Quando l'arte sfida il capitalismo

Olav Velthuis

publisher: Johan & Levi

pages: 144 pagine

A British artist sells all his belongings on eBay. A Dutch colleague analyzes business culture through his own initiatives. An American prints banknotes and finds a way to spend them. A Swiss sells his invitation to take part in Manifesta. The idea that art and business are incompatible now seems to be wholly superseded. Many contemporary artists n
Contemporary art has made its way into numerous productive universes over the last few decades and art enterprises modelled on their ethical counterparts have sprung up all over Europe. The Dutch industrialist Akzo Nobel has created a foundation that hosts artists in residence. The French bank Neuflize OBC and the Belgian group Lhoist, a world producer of lime, commission works from contemporary photographers. The Italian TESECO group, specialized in the environmental treatment of waste, has created a workshop of contemporary art. The Deutsche Guggenheim in Berlin was born as a joint venture between the Deutsche Bank and the Guggenheim Foundation. This interest in art is not, however, confined to major corporations but also affects small and medium-sized firms, and seldom takes the form of one-off sponsorships designed solely to bolster company image. Unlike the American model, which is more oriented towards consumption, the European appears to see art as an investment whose profit is to be found in the contribution made to the development of a sense of collective responsibility as regards the social environment and the assertion of cultural identity. This is an alliance that in turn works to the benefit of art, especially the art of today. Deeply convinced of this Lisbonne and Zürcher start from the French model but work on the European scale to identify, country by country, sound entrepreneurial strategies and methods in support of projects, the commissioning of artworks and the creation of company collections and foundations. The authors highlight the ability of art, within corporate structures, to facilitate the expression of identity and convey cultural values capable of enriching the everyday life of personnel. As Pier Luigi Sacco points out in his preface, it is for all these reasons that contemporary art is not losing its appeal with the economic crisis but proves on the contrary capable in such circumstances of offering a salutary change of viewpoint, a way of looking at the facts of life through new eyes. Nor is it forgotten that “the art market, unlike the financial markets, handles works whose significance is not confined to the return they promise and that can indeed be regarded during a period of slump first of all as fraught with meaning, as opportunities to understand the world in which we live and even ourselves to some extent”.
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Arte contemporanea: costo o investimento?

Una prospettiva europea

Karine Lisbonne, Bernard Zürcher

publisher: Johan & Levi

pages: 192 pagine

Contemporary art has made its way into numerous productive universes over the last few decades and art enterprises modelled on their ethical counterparts have sprung up all over Europe. The Dutch industrialist Akzo Nobel has created a foundation that hosts artists in residence. The French bank Neuflize OBC and the Belgian group Lhoist, a world prod

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