From Reggio Emilia to Sassuolo, the works of three Emilian artists - Olimpia Zagnoli, Luigi Ghirri and Annalisa Vandelli - exhibited in exceptional Emilian locations, amidst historical and industrial contexts
Along the Via Emilia we point out three exhibitions to visit one of the next autumn weekends, with a high creative rate. Housed in three locations and two different cities, including prestigious buildings, virtuous recoveries and industrial contexts, three Emilian artists, very different from each other in style, inspiration and medium, have in common their origins. Emiliane obviously.

Our (mini) journey starts from Reggio Emilia, where the two-dimensional figures, the sinuous images, the optical illusions, the contrasting combinations but above all the many colors, full and bright, that dot the span creative universe of Olimpia Zagnoli inhabit the exhibition spaces of the Cloisters of San Pietro.

We continue to Sassuolo , the second stop is at the Palazzo Ducale, part of the heritage of the Estensi Galleries. Here, the meeting and collaboration between Luigi Ghirri and Marazzi, which began in Sassuolo in 1975. It is a story of research, creativity and bonds with the local area of which the Gallerie, much loved by the author, embody the history and the beauty.

We stay in Sassuolo for the personal exhibition of Annalisa Vandelli. Hosted for the first time in her hometown, the photojournalist and writer talks about the South of the world in the historic Marazzi Crogiolo in Sassuolo, used, also it for the first time, as space for photographic exhibitions. 

Olimpia Zagnoli, Kaleidoscopic in the Cloisters of San Pietro in Reggio Emilia

Until November 28, 2021, the Palazzo Magnani Foundation of Reggio Emilia with the Kaleidoscopic exhibition. The illustrated world of Olimpia Zagnoli edited by Melania Gazzotti, brings the 'unmistakable eclectic style of Olimpia Zagnoli in the Cloisters of San Pietro in via Emilia San Pietro 44c. An ancient monastery from the Renaissance period, thanks to the careful restoration carried out by the Zamboni Associai Architettura studio, the complex is now a fascinating cultural space that offers a fervent program of events, exhibitions, workshops and meetings.

After having conquered the world of publishing, fashion and communication in just a few years, Olimpia Zagnoli returns to Reggio Emilia, the city of her childhood, with an exhibition project capable of enhancing the countless facets of her work, emphasizing the ability of lines and of the colors of his works - figures, geometries and landscapes - to offer the imagination ever new stimuli.

The exhibition traces ten years of the illustrator's career showing her unmistakable trait declined in drawings, prints, neon, fabrics, sculptures in ceramic, wood and plexiglass, as well as objects of common use.


The exhibition demonstrates how the artist is able to express himself with the same ease with the languages of the visual arts and publishing, recounting, in an immersive environment, the complexity of his creative universe and its sources of inspiration, which they range from the history of art to that of design and graphics.


For her first anthology in Reggio Emilia, Olimpia Zagnoli has created a site-specific project: a 'sculpture garden' consisting of six large-format works with sinuous lines and full, bright colors, created thanks to the contribution of the fashion house Marella.

“Kaleidoscopic, as the title suggests, is a gallery of shapes and colors that break down to recompose themselves and give life to new images” explains Olimpia Zagnoli . “To create them I try to exploit the elasticity of the visual language and tell small everyday stories of contemporary characters that reflect the reality that surrounds them or that anticipate it. My subjects are multiform and multicolored individuals who inhabit the space with ease, respect and pink hair!”.

Luigi Ghirri with Marazzi at the Palazzo Ducale in Sassuolo

Until 31 October 2021 an almost completely unpublished group of photographs by Luigi Ghirri is the protagonist of the Luigi Ghirri. The Marazzi Years 1975 - 1985 exhibition, curated by Ilaria Campioli, at the Palazzo Ducale in Sassuolo (Estensi Galleries), in piazzale della Rosa 10.

Read also: Marazzi and Luighi Ghirri: ceramic poetry


Thirty photographs, fruit of this extraordinary partnership and preserved for almost forty years in the Marazzi archives, are exhibited in the Appartamento dei Giganti spaces, reopened to the public for this occasion: a small room (camerino) and two large rooms overlooking an imposing Italian garden, decorated with geometric perspective and friezes composed of scrolls, panels and two reliefs with Tritons and Nereids.

The project, created by the Gallerie Estensi in collaboration with the Luigi Ghirri Archive and Marazzi Group, reveals how much Ghirri used ceramics to deepen themes and reflections dear to him in those years, like the function of photography itself, being a tool to interrogate the world, to understand collective and shared perception, to analyse architecture, landscape representation, illusion.

The images shot by Ghirri for Marazzi have been combined in one volume and one website:

Annalisa Vandelli at the Crogiolo Marazzi in Sassuolo

The reporter and writer Annalisa Vandelli exhibits for the first time in Sassuolo, her hometown. In a vortex of dust at the Crogiolo Marazzi, in via Radici in Monte 70 until 24 October, curated by Uliano Lucas and Tatiana Agliani and promoted by the Sassuolo Lions Club under the patronage of the Municipality, exhibits seventy photographs that represent the distillation of 10 years of stories around the world.

Ten years as a traveler crossing the South of the world summarized in 70 shots: Middle East, Africa and Central America, between daily habits of poverty, wars, hopes and faces that trace the drama between the wrinkles. Worlds told in color or black and white, visiting places so different from each other, talking to people and listening to stories.

For the first time, the Crogiolo Marazzi in Sassuolo is used as a space for photographic exhibitions. Not only that, the unprecedented setting is incorporated into the concept of the exhibition. The photographs, in fact, are presented on suspended walls of corrugated sheets, in a continuous reference to the slums and in a perspective game with industrial architecture.

Historical reference, the Crucible is the place where tiles were produced in the first Marazzi industrial settlement in the 1930s. In the 1980s it became a real brand as well as the headquarters of the Marazzi "Experimentations". Here, in fact, designers, artists and potters were called to experiment with ceramics. A research center, a "melting pot" of new ideas.

The space, extending over 850 square meters spread over two floors, was the protagonist of a careful conservative restoration by the architect Gianluca Rossi of Uainot Architetti who, respecting the historical value of the building, brought it back to life.