Burri: The Space Of Matter / Between Europe and The Usa

From 24 September 2016  to 6 January 2017...
burri spazio materia europa usa pieghevole copertina eng


 Former Tobacco Kilns Città di Castello (PG)

Exhibition times

From Tuesday to Friday
9.00-12.30 / 14.30-18.00
Saturday, Sunday, and public holidays
10.00-13.00 / 15.00-18.00
Closed Mondays
(except for public and bank holidays)
Exhibition (full price) € 10.00
Exhibition (concession) € 8.00
Exhibition (child 6 to 18 years) € 6.00
*The exhibition ticket allows
entry to the permanent collection
in the Former Tobacco Kilns
Two museums
+ exhibition (full price) € 15.00
Two museums
+ exhibition (concession) € 12.00
Two museums
+ exhibition
(child 6 to 18 years) € 10.00
Guided tour per venue
€ 5.00 (min. 5 pers.)
Guided tour for groups per venue
€ 40.00 (max. 20 pers.)
Fabrizio Manis

After the notable sucess of the Alberto Burri: The Trauma of Painting exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum in New York, in October 2015, and the subsequent exhibition at the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen in Düsseldorf, the celebrations of the centenary of the birth of the great Italian artist conclude with an extraordinary new exhibition event in Città di Castello, his birth place, organised by the Foundation. A large review of the most significant 20th-century post-war contemporary art trends with possible thematic links to Burri’s art, whether antecedent, contemporaneous or subsequent to it, with focus on dialectic aspects of most evident influence, will be held in the former Tabacco Kilns from 24 September 2016 until 6 January 2017 under the title Burri Lo Spazio di Materia / Tra Europa e USA (Burri The Space of Matter / Between Europe and the USA). As stated by Richard Armstrong, Director of the Guggenheim Museum, on the occasion of the opening of the retrospective Alberto Burri: The Trauma of Painting, “the exhibition affirms Burri’s position as one of the most innovative artists of the post-war period. Burri (…) created a new type of object, simultaneously pictorial and sculptural, which subsequently influenced artists associated with Neo-Dada, Noveau Réalisme and Post Minimalism...”, as well as Italian Arte Povera. To these considerations, others may be added that are no less relevant in terms of the linguistic imagination that flowed from his work. Burri was an artist who derived an unprecedented spatiality from his direct and almost exclusive use of material, characterised by “control of the unexpected” and a masterful balance that distinguished its forms. This large exhibition review, in which hundreds of paintings, sculptures and installations are brought together, will facilitate observations and reflections that highlight the centrality of Burri’s painting in the international art scene since the late 1940s. After his imprisonment in the USA, during his journey of initiation to Paris in 1948-1949, he gained first-hand knowledge of the painting of Mirò, Fautrier, Dubuffet and other exponents of European art who were active there, with fertile consequences for the development of his own material-based pictorial language; his subsequent travels to the USA over the course of the 1950s brought him into contact with the painting of Pollock, Motherwell, De Kooning and other abstract expressionists, with its own diversity and originality.

His revolutionary innovations became evident from 1948-50 with his “Catrami” (Tars) and above all with his “Sacchi” (Sacks), which proved an essential and compelling source of inspiration and renewal for the American and European Neo-Dada generation. The exhibition will therefore also include works by Rauschenberg, Johns, Twombly, Colla, Nevelson, Marca-Relli, and Scarpitta. Burri also encountered painting of similar value in the Italian and European scene, by artists including Afro, Capogrossi, Fontana, Matta, Nicholson and Tàpies. Not unlike what had occurred with the Neo-Dada experiences, the subsequent stages of Burri’s painting, such as the “Gobbi” (Hunchbacks), “Combustioni” (Combustions) “Plastiche” (Plastics), “Ferri” (Irons) and “Legni” (Woods), provided an exemplary role for artists such as Klein, Rotella, Manzoni, Kounellis, Pascali, Pistoletto, Uncini, Arman, Christo and others, whose experimentations, with original and powerful contributions, seemed to develop the premises of a processing of material that was substantially and phenomenologically essential to the definition of the object and the form. It seems evident that the spatialist and minimalist experimentations of LeWitt and Serra should also be viewed in the light of the results achieved by Burri’s painting, as well as the work of artists such as Beuys, Kiefer, Sonnier and Mattiacci, who made substantial use of materials in those years. In a memorable event, the exhibition at Città di Castello includes, alongside the works of Burri, numerous genuine historical “masterpieces” by artists associated with him, and offers a documentary section with biographical and cultural material, including reviews, catalogues, manuscripts, photographs and monographs of all those artists considered essential for the reconstruction of a broad historical framework of the 20th Century. During the three-and-a-half months of the exhibition in Città di Castello, there will be screenings of films on the various artists featured, as well as Petra Noordkamp’s film “Il Grande Cretto di Gibellina”, on loan from the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, in rooms specially set up in the Former Tobacco Kilns. Furthermore, in October 2016, visitors can watch the European preview of the Ballet “November Steps”, composed by Minsa Craig, Burri’s wife, with the original set designed by Burri himself in 1973, adapted and performed by the “Tom Gold Dance” company from New York. Numerous multimedia and printed materials will be available to the public for the great event, in addition to a catalogue with contributions by Bruno Corà, Thierry Dufrêne, Denys Zacharopoulos, Pietro Bellasi, Adachiara Zevi, Luigi Sansone, Aldo Iori, Francesco Tedeschi, Paola Bonani, Italo Tomassoni, Mario Diacono, Petra Richter and Chiara Sarteanesi.


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