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Double Portrait

Zoran Music - Ida Barbarigo

pages: 212 pages

"Each became absorbed in their own artistic universe, in ways that gradually acquired consistency and weightover the years. Art animated their lives, an inexorable imperative. Painting was the sole, intimate necessity for both, perhaps the only real secret of their indissoluble bond."
Hybris
Once merely an exception and object of curiosity, the monstrous has become a common experience, overrunning everything with its troubled, deviant forms that defy the harmony of the classic canon. Indeed, in a disconcerting shift in perspective, disproportion, or hybris, has become the rule. The abyss opened in 1895, when the many revolutionary discoveries and theories – cinema, psychoanalysis, x-rays, Penfield’s neurological research and the first studies of hysteria – prevented artists from continuing to represent the body as they had always done. Jean Clair dissects the modern aesthetic with its proliferation of monstrous, exaggerated forms, beginning at the beginning with Goya, continuing with the malaise expressed in Redon’s symbolist paintings and arriving at the crossbreeds of the twentieth century in works by Miró, Ernst, Duchamp, Grosz, Picasso, Giacometti, and Balthus. Clair’s analysis focuses on three exemplary figures that weave themselves through the fabric of the centuries, eventually serving as tormented paradigms: the deformed, disjointed homunculus, the Behemoth, which, following on Swift and Voltaire, came to incarnate the deadly madness of the revolution that devours its own children, and the Acéphale celebrated by Bataille, the headless monster whose mutilated body is the unnerving child of the guillotine. Bringing to bear the work of thirty years, Clair offers an intriguing view of the contemporary. Continuing his exploration of themes from exhibitions such as ‘Identità e alterità’ and ‘Crime et châtiment’, the author traces a path that winds through centuries of terrifying, exaggerated creatures who force themselves into consciousness with the finality of facts, becoming instruments to gauge the degree of disorientation in our hybris-saturated present. Now a new monstrous creature has appeared in an unexpected light as a colossal, decapitated, senseless container of an immense, formless, frenetic mass: the global museum.
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Hybris

La fabbrica del mostro nell'arte moderna. Omuncoli, giganti e acefali

Jean Clair

pages: 166 pages

Once merely an exception and object of curiosity, the monstrous has become a common experience, overrunning everything with its troubled, deviant forms that defy the harmony of the classic canon. Indeed, in a disconcerting shift in perspective, disproportion, or hybris, has become the rule. The abyss opened in 1895, when the many revolutionary dis

Arte ri-programmata

Un manifesto aperto

pages: 190 pages

Re-programmed Art: An Open Manifesto is an action research project that explored the impact of methods and approaches linked to open source hardware and software on the field of art. The aim was to produce a number of physical and technological artefacts whose information and implementation specifications are publicly released under free licenses.T
Yves il provocatore
Yves Klein (Nice, 1928 – Paris, 1962) knew he was a revolutionary. A warrior of the art world with a tendency to challenge the frontiers of matter and time, he was always reaching "beyond" the limits of things. An intensely spiritual Knight of the Holy Grail with the intrepid, irreverent verve of Tintin. His oeuvre embodies the artistic currents of the first half of the twentieth century and anticipates the major themes of the avant-garde of the 1960s and 1970s, breaking through the boundaries of existing art and announcing a new way forward.What he called his Blue Revolution was a breakthrough destined to put an end to the era of Matter and launch that of Space, and Yves le Monochrome, Conqueror of the Void, was its self-proclaimed Messenger and Upholder, not to mention the official Owner of the colour (namely Klein Blue). He is known for his audacious feats: "Le Vide", an exhibition in a metaphysically empty gallery which sold immaterial art for its weight in gold, to throw in the Seine, and the photo of the famous Leap, which shows him mid swan dive from the ledge of a building in Paris, not falling but embracing the void. His was not a descent but an ascent from the physical world to that of the spirit, which became reality when he met with an early death after seven years of brilliant work.Drawing on the vivid accounts of those who knew him, this book captures the bold spirit of a contradictory artist, a painter and anti-painter whose passion and genius embraced a cultural heritage spanning Bachelard and Heindel, Jung and the Rosicrucians, Duchamp and Malevič, and who carved out an entirely unique place for himself between modernism and post modernism. McEvilley delves into the complex aesthetic unity that underlies the apparent simplicity of monochrome blue, and explores the dramatic parable of a man and artist who chased his own myth until he died of it: "Long live the immaterial".
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Yves il provocatore

Yves Klein e l'arte del Ventesimo secolo

Thomas McEvilley

pages: 252 pages

Yves Klein (Nice, 1928 – Paris, 1962) knew he was a revolutionary. A warrior of the art world with a tendency to challenge the frontiers of matter and time, he was always reaching "beyond" the limits of things. An intensely spiritual Knight of the Holy Grail with the intrepid, irreverent verve of Tintin. His oeuvre embodies the artistic currents
Mario Sironi
In Sironi's words, "Art does not need to be nice, it needs to be great", and what better way to describe his own paintings: depictions of city scenes as forbidding yet impressive as modern cathedrals. A Futurist from 1913, in the 1920s Mario Sironi (Sassari 1885 – Milan 1961) began painting the bleaker side of city life and contemporary society, creating cityscapes that nonetheless possess the dignity of classical architecture and monumental figures with the poise of ancient portraiture. With his modern take on classicism, he was one of the leading artists between the two wars: first with the Italian Novecento movement, which formed in Milan in 1922; then with the visionary dream of reviving fresco and mosaic.A personal friend of Mussolini's and early adopter of Fascism, Sironi's mural paintings of the 1930s gave form to the nationalist and social doctrine of the regime, though not its racial laws, which he never approved of. Yet his first love remained the decorative art of antiquity, inspired by witnessing "the magnificent ghosts of classical art" during his youth in Rome. And in any case, his powerful, harrowing works never became an art of state.Life was not kind to Sironi, who lost his father when he was only thirteen. He not only lived through the war but also depression, poverty, family problems, artistic controversy, and overwork to the point of burnout. He survived the fall of Fascism and the disintegration of his political ideals, only narrowly avoiding a summary execution (thanks to the intervention of Gianni Rodari, a member of the resistance but admirer of his), and experienced the tragic loss of his daughter Rossana, who committed suicide at the age of 18 in 1948. Yet his art represented a stubborn creative act in the face of life's (existential and historical) vicissitudes; at least until his late period, when, deserted by his dreams and illusions, he painted crumbling cities and visions of the Apocalypse.
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Mario Sironi

La grandezza dell'arte, le tragedie della storia

Elena Pontiggia

pages: 304 pages

In Sironi's words, "Art does not need to be nice, it needs to be great", and what better way to describe his own paintings: depictions of city scenes as forbidding yet impressive as modern cathedrals. A Futurist from 1913, in the 1920s Mario Sironi (Sassari 1885 – Milan 1961) began painting the bleaker side of city life and contemporary society,

Atlante delle emozioni

In viaggio tra arte, architettura e cinema

Giuliana Bruno

pages: 592 pages

Traversing a varied and enchanting landscape with forays into the fields of geography, art, architecture, design, cartography and film, Giuliana Bruno’s Atlante delle emozioni is a highly original endeavor to map a cultural history of spatio-visual arts. In an evocative montage of words and pictures she emphasizes that “sight” and “site”
Un desiderio ardente
Before it was seen as a technology, at its outset photography sprang from a burning desire to capture the images produced in the camera obscura. This desire, which can also be seen in Dürer's work and has roots in the founding legend of art, grew in force between the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, when the romantic redefinition of space, time and subjectivity, provided the right conditions for the first concrete achievements in the photographic process, leading to the "official" birth of the medium. As an invention it was heralded by the centuries-long, complex rapport between art and reality, but it is in fact the product of a specific aesthetic, social and cultural milieu. The incentive of industrialized modernity and the advent of mass production prompted the studies of scientists, experimenters and artists from different countries and cultures which culminated in the achievements of Talbot, Niépce, Daguerre, Bayard and other early photographers who were inspired, in parallel and simultaneously, by the desire to capture "the art of nature" by any means. The book reflects on both the origins of photography and its identity: inspired by Foucault's genealogy and the deconstruction of Derrida, Batchen tells the story from a new point of view. Not with the banal aim of deciding who was the first to "invent" the process, but to effect a broader survey that investigates the conception of the very idea of photography, intuiting the richness and complexity of the medium in the often figurative notions and discourse of the early days. Notions and discourse that, like photography, oscillate between nature and culture in challenging, intriguing ways, and are infused with the ambiguities and enduring echoes of a desire that forever changed our way of looking at the world.
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Un desiderio ardente

Alle origini della fotografia

Geoffrey Batchen

pages: 256 pages

Before it was seen as a technology, at its outset photography sprang from a burning desire to capture the images produced in the camera obscura. This desire, which can also be seen in Dürer's work and has roots in the founding legend of art, grew in force between the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, when the romantic redefinition of
Il cinema degli architetti
This is a story of conversations that never took place and arrested developments; an adventurous tale, never yet fully told, whose protagonists include Le Corbusier and Walter Gropius, Charles and Ray Eames and Yona Friedman, Bruno Munari and Frank Lloyd Wright, Giancarlo De Carlo and Ludovico Quaroni, Emilio Ambasz and Ettore Sottsass, Gaetano Pesce and Mario Bellini, Michele De Lucchi and Aldo Rossi, Superstudio and Andrea Branzi.  What these diverse players have in common is a deep fascination for film, the medium of the modern age. As the extraordinary art of "seeing space", it is a tool that can be used to explore architecture and describe its principles and volumes from the inside, a device that can be deployed to visualise the contemporary metropolis. Reluctant to embrace the rules of the film industry and grasp the specificity of cinematic language, these architects/directors see the seventh art as a free arena, a terrain to explore without having to pay lip service to customs and rituals, a place for the wildest experiments. Some elements are recurrent: the urgency of their accounts, their critical approach, their desire to recycle existing materials, their visionary momentum and conceptual attitude. While Le Corbusier and De Carlo used moving pictures to bring theoretical reflections already known to scholars and professionals to an audience of non-specialists, others - like Pesce, De Lucchi, Bellini and Branzi - adopted avant-garde models, rejecting the traditional dictates of discourse and the classic canons of communication. Others, like Acconci and Superstudio, use video to stage absurd, impossible projects.In this original book edited by Vincenzo Trione we meet many architects for whom the cinema, in the words of Giulio Carlo Argan, is not just a "pure and simple system of knowledge", but a "newly established system of meaning", the "most structuring" of artistic techniques.
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Il cinema degli architetti

pages: 270 pages

This is a story of conversations that never took place and arrested developments; an adventurous tale, never yet fully told, whose protagonists include Le Corbusier and Walter Gropius, Charles and Ray Eames and Yona Friedman, Bruno Munari and Frank Lloyd Wright, Giancarlo De Carlo and Ludovico Quaroni, Emilio Ambasz and Ettore Sottsass, Gaetano Pes
Che cos'è l'arte
This is the eternal question that the philosopher and critic Arthur C. Danto tackles in an essay that is part philosophical dissertation, part autobiographical musings. Taking his distance from the view that reduces art to what is regarded as such in an institutional context, or those who even consider it to be indefinable, the author identifies various features that can help provide some clear outlines, including the ontological permanence of art, beyond the different forms in which it manifests itself. What makes art art is the ability to lend form to an idea, to express an idea by means of an artistic "modus operandi" that translates thought into matter in the most effective way, bypassing contingencies. But that's not the full story. Art has to embody something intangible: like a daydream, it has to induce a new emotive and sensory state in the viewer. Danto thus arrives at conclusions far removed from the relativism attributed to him for decades: understanding art does not depend on an open concept, but an open mind. Guiding the reader through the big names in philosophy and art of every age (particularly Michelangelo, Poussin, Duchamp and Warhol), the author takes an ambitious path from Platonic and Kantian theory to an analysis of the innovations - perspective, chiaroscuro, physiognomy and the advent of photography - that have shaped Western art, until its apparent burn-out with the arrival of conceptual poetics and the disappearance of aesthetics as a value. As well as exploring fascinating new developments, What is Art? distills the essence of decades of work, and thus represents an ideal introduction to the work of America's greatest visual arts critic.
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Che cos'è l'arte

Arthur C. Danto

pages: 126 pages

This is the eternal question that the philosopher and critic Arthur C. Danto tackles in an essay that is part philosophical dissertation, part autobiographical musings. Taking his distance from the view that reduces art to what is regarded as such in an institutional context, or those who even consider it to be indefinable, the author identifies va
Meret Oppenheim
Woman, artist, outsider, icon: from her groundbreaking debut with Breakfast in fur, which made it into the MOMA when she was just over 20, to her lengthy and difficult quest to be cast off artistic, ideological and gender-related labels, Meret Oppenheim (1913-1985) is one of the few female figures in art history famous for challenging time-honoured rules and preconceptions in the name of a genuine vocation.Her life and work were shaped by a radical outlook: no easy path, both in terms of the conformist society of the day, and the inherent sexism that characterised the artistic and literary milieu of her time. Man Ray's revered muse, Breton's irreverent protégé, a party to and exponent of the most radical experiments and most exciting artistic adventures in the twentieth century, Meret Oppenheim was a free spirit with the confidence and at times tormented originality of a natural talent.From her encounter with the theories of Carl Jung to her dazzling engagement with the surrealists; from her long struggle with depression to her magnetic attraction to Max Ernst, aged just 20; from her intense, profound artistic partnership with Alberto Giacometti to her secret and, to date, little known friendship with Marcel Duchamp, Martina Corgnati traces a faithful and intriguing portrait of a woman and artist who, following in the footsteps of Virginia Woolf and Lou Salome and combating the facile stereotypes of an all-female art,  had the courage to shout out to women of every era: "Freedom will not be given to us: we have to take it for ourselves".
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Meret Oppenheim

Afferrare la vita per la coda

Martina Corgnati

pages: 540 pages

Woman, artist, outsider, icon: from her groundbreaking debut with Breakfast in fur, which made it into the MOMA when she was just over 20, to her lengthy and difficult quest to be cast off artistic, ideological and gender-related labels, Meret Oppenheim (1913-1985) is one of the few female figures in art history famous for challenging time-honoured
Il MAXXI a raggi X
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

pages: 96 pages

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
Arte in TV
In the lengthy history of Italian TV art has had a place right from the start: 3 January 1954, when the RAI began broadcasting, was also the date of the first cultural programme, Le avventure dell’arte (The Adventures of Art). And it was indeed an adventure: the outstanding communicative potential of the new medium, which took high culture into many Italian homes for the first time, soon came up against the scepticism, if not downright boycott of a substantial part of critics and intellectuals, as well as navigatng the minefield of translating culture from one medium to another. Sixty years on, the scenario and the protagonists of this story are vastly different, with the presence of private broadcasters and pay tv greatly expanding what is on offer, not to mention the switch to digital, and the natural evolution of television language and personalities, including artists and critics. But while the context has changed, the issues regarding the relationship between art and TV remain the same, first and foremost the legitimacy of a popular medium to convey high-brow culture, and the small screen's approach to art, including the various forms of art education which are held to be the main and most obvious use of the medium. This aspect is the focus of the essays gathered in this book, some concerning the specific field of television communication and others focusing on art. Despite these different angles, what comes to the fore is the close relationship between the two most influential visual media of the late 20th century.
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Arte in TV

Forma di divulgazione

pages: 184 pages

In the lengthy history of Italian TV art has had a place right from the start: 3 January 1954, when the RAI began broadcasting, was also the date of the first cultural programme, Le avventure dell’arte (The Adventures of Art). And it was indeed an adventure: the outstanding communicative potential of the new medium, which took high culture into m

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