Michelangelo Pistoletto at MAXXI (Rome)

Michelangelo Pistoletto: Da Uno a Molti, 1956-1974
4 March 2011 – 15 August 2011

MAXXI is reinforcing its international vocation through profound synergy with the Philadelphia Museum of Art, one of the leading American museums, and is taking to America the most important exhibition devoted to Michelangelo Pistoletto, recognised in Europe as one of the greatest living artists and considered in the United States as a sensitive pioneer of contemporary artistic practises.

The exhibition presents over 100 works from both American and European private collections.

Reflecting on the passage from the first portraits from the mid-Fifties through to the collective actions of the late Sixties and early Seventies, visitors can follow Pistoletto’s artistic development from the rigorous investigation of the representation of the self through to the development of the creative collaborations that have characterised his research.

The exhibition will also house a section devoted to the Plexiglas works that from 1964 anticipated the Conceptual Art movement and a section featuring his Stracci or Rags, sculptures that between the late Sixties and the early Seventies testified to his links with Arte Povera. Moreover, a selection of videos and archive material will document the performance works that the artists produced with the group Zoo between 1968 and 1970.

Together with a broad presentation of the Mirror Pictures from the period 1962-1974, an essential part of the exhibition will be constituted by the Minus Objects, a group of various pieces from the two-year period 1965*-1966 in which the aesthetic of Minimalist seriality is deliberately contested, emphasising the differences between each object and drawing inspiration from different fields such as craft, architecture, design and popular culture.

Lastly, the exhibition will house a workshop space devoted to Cittadellarte, a project to which the artist has been committed since 1998 and which carries forward his research into the “democratization of art” that began in the 1960s. In this section with a highly interactive component, the public will have the opportunity to explore the latest social commitments that have involved and continue to involve the artist, becoming part of the work and rediscovering that ontological unity found when reflected in the “mirrors”. This section will be associated with a cycle of seminars, encounters and workshops.