Arte Fiera turns half a century. It is one of the oldest modern and contemporary art events in Europe.
For the occasion, the city of Bologna dresses up to the nines by organizing exhibitions, events, performances, special projects and prizes in every corner.
A party within a party that will transform the Emilian capital into the heart of Italian creativity (and beyond) from 1st to 4th February. The booklet is full of appointments. We choose 5, all to be marked with the red circle.
1. Arte Fiera
The first is obviously Arte Fiera. Directed by Simone Menegoi, this year it has 196 exhibitors. Among the welcome returns are those of top galleries such as Lia Rumma, Franco Noero, Sprovieri and Apalazzo.
Four sections in total. The Main section, as is now customary, oscillates between historicized and contemporary art. Then there are Photography and moving images, Pittura XXI and Multipli, which presents limited edition works to the public, ranging from artist to author's design. Next to the various sections there are also the Special Projects which boast a billboard worthy of applause.
Among the musts, the Opus Novum project, through which the fair commissions a work from an artist.
For the 2024 edition it is the turn of Alberto Garutti, who passed away last year, and Luisa Lambri. The latter is famous above all for his photos of modernist architecture, so essential that they seem like abstract works.
The artist from Como has chosen to describe through images two symbolic buildings of the Bolognese architecture of the Seventies: the church of Santa Maria Assunta in Riola di Vergato, the only permanent work by Alvar Aalto in Italy, completed in 1976, and the Pavilion de L'Esprit Nouveau, a philologically accurate copy of Le Corbusier's ephemeral architecture from the 1920s, built in 1977 right at the gates of the fairgrounds.
Last but not least, the Mutina for Art project designed by Maurizio Cattelan. Curated by Sarah Cosulich and entitled Because, it is a surprising dialogue between two works by Cattelan inserted within a space dominated by the Fringe ceramic collection, designed for Mutina by Michael Anastassiades.
2. The special project dedicated to Giorgio Morandi
This year it won't just be Arte Fiera celebrating an important anniversary. In fact, Bologna has also chosen to celebrate Giorgio </ strong> Morandi </ strong>, the great modern painter who was born and lived in these parts, on the 60th anniversary of his death.
Art City pays homage to him thanks to a very special program which sees five special projects, entrusted to as many superstars, who reinterpret the master's still lifes through different languages: Virgilio Sieni for the performance is at the Teatro Comunale, Joel Meyerowitz and Mary Ellen Bartley for photography are respectively at the Collezioni Comunali d'Arte in Piazza Maggiore and at the Morandi Museum, Tacita Dean for video art exhibits at Palazzo Tanari while Mark Vernon for sound goes on stage in the Campiaro Barns at the Giorgio Morandi House Museum.
Alongside the projects, acting as icing on the cake, there is the Morandi metaphysical exhibition. Three drawings. A story at Casa Morandi set up in the historic house in Via Fondazza 36.
3. Chiara Fumai's solo show, Inviting Evil Spirits
Another event to highlight with fluorescent highlighter is the solo show dedicated to Chiara Fumai entitledInviting Evil Spirits. The exhibition, at the Italian Women's Library, has the aftertaste of homage and presents the video installations of the performances Shut up, Actually Talk, from 2012 and The book of evil spirits,from 2015. Where Chiara, who committed suicide at just 39 years old, evokes (and invokes) women from different eras, revolutionary personalities united by the desire for social revenge and above all by the need to escape male oppression.
4. a bit of London in Bologna
The Galleria d'Arte Maggiore is transformed into a corner of London. Thanks to Allen Jones protagonist of the Forever Icons exhibition on display until April 26th. The various rooms of the museum are invaded by numerous iconic works that reveal to the public the artistic epic of one of the most important exponents of Pop Art, capable of influencing practically everything: from design to fashion, from popular culture to films (Stanley Kubrick is often inspired by him).
On stage there are paintings, photographs, sculptures and mannequins. The job not to be missed for anything in the world? The legendary photographic shot that immortalizes Kate Moss transformed into a sculpture thanks to an armor dress, which over the years has become the symbol of an entire era.
5. Very Well, on my Own, the anthology dedicated to Ludovica Carbotta
The last Bolognese rendezvous not to be missed is the anthology that Mambo dedicates to Ludovica Carbotta. Curated by Lorenzo Balbi, the exhibition entitledVery Well, on my Own presents 104 works (of which 42 sculptures, 36 drawings, 11 photographs, 9 installations, 4 videos, a canvas and a collage) and retraces the multifaceted production of the Turin artist born in 1982 who has been investigating the concept of imagination for years.
Sculpture, architecture, drawing, performance and writing coexist more or less peacefully in the exhibition. They all oscillate between fiction and reality, generating considerations on the sense of community and that of the individual, on the concepts of body, identity, urban space and living environment.
Art City Bologna 2024: useful information
Dates: from 1 to 4 February 2024
Location: at various locations in the city of Bologna. Arte Fiera is set up inside the Exhibition Centre, Pavilions 25 and 26.
Website and tickets: all information on the Art City is available on the website culturabologna.it