Edition: 57. International Art Exhibition - Viva Arte Viva directed by Christine Macel (13 May - 26 November 2017)
Titolo del Padiglione Italia: Il Mondo magico
Curator: Cecilia Alemani
Commissioner: Federica Galloni
Catalogue: Il mondo magico, 57. Esposizione Internazionale d’Arte La Biennale di Venezia, Padiglione Italia, a cura di Cecilia Alemani, Marsilio, Venezia 2017
"Il mondo magico" is the title of curator Cecilia Alemani's project for the Italian Pavilion at the 57. International Art Exhibition of Biennale di Venezia (13 May - 26 November 2017) and features works by Giorgio Andreotta Calò, Roberto Cuoghi and Adelita Husni-Bey.
The exhibition is inspired by the book of the same name by the Neapolitan anthropologist Ernesto de Martino (1908-1965), published immediately after the Second World War and dedicated to the study of magic as a tool through which various cultures and populations react to situations of crisis and the inability to understand and shape the world.
As part of her project, Cecilia Alemani has invited Giorgio Andreotta Calò, Roberto Cuoghi and Adelita Husni-Bey to create three new projects, specially commissioned and produced for the Pavilion. The three invited artists not only share a fascination for the magical, but - each in a different way - have had similar formative experiences. They were born in Italy in the 1970s and 1980s and have emerged on the national and international art scene since the beginning of the new millennium. They are part of the first Italian generations to grow up in a cosmopolitan and international reality: their works and languages are part of a global dialogue even though they are intimately linked to the culture of our country.
The work of Giorgio Andreotta Calò, Roberto Cuoghi and Adelita Husni-Bey proposes a renewed faith in the transformative power of the imagination," says curator Cecilia Alemani, "three artists who share a vision of art as the creation of parallel universes in which individual cosmologies and collective utopias intermingle. Through multiple references to the magical, the fantastic and the fabulous, Andreotta Calò, Cuoghi and Husni-Bey create tools through which to inhabit the world in all its richness and multiplicity. In their works, reality is reinvented now with fantasy and play, now with poetry and imagination: theirs is a tale interwoven with myths, rituals, beliefs and fables. In these references, the three invited artists do not seek an escape route into the depths of the irrational, but a cognitive means with which to confront and reconstruct reality".
The decision to invite a smaller number of artists than in the past responds to the need to align the Italian Pavilion with the other national pavilions present at the Biennale, with the aim not so much of organising an exhaustive overview of all Italian art, but rather of giving the selected artists the space, time and resources to present a large, ambitious project that represents a not-to-be-missed opportunity in their career and that can offer the public an opportunity to immerse themselves in their world.
Cecilia Alemani's project proves to be perfectly in tune with the installation constructed by Christine Macel for the 57. Viva Arte Viva" is inspired by an idea of humanism that celebrates man's ability, through art, not to be dominated by the forces that govern what happens in the world, forces that, if left alone, can greatly condition the human dimension in a reductive sense.
As part of the exhibition "Il mondo magico", a programme of educational activities for students at Italian Fine Arts Academies is being organised, promoted by the Directorate-General, in a cycle of events curated by Cecilia Alemani and Marta Papini.