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Lecture Michelangelo Pistoletto Lecture

Michelangelo Pistoletto will talk about his work, in particular Cittadellarte-Fondazione Pistoletto, instituted in 1998 as a concrete action of the Progetto Arte Manifesto where the artist Michelangelo Pistoletto proposed a new role for the artist: that of placing art in direct interaction with all the areas of human activity which form society.


The name Cittadellarte incorporates two meanings: that of the citadel or rather an area where art is protected and well defended, and that of the city, which corresponds to the idea of openness and interrelational complexities with the world. Cittadellarte is a great laboratory, a generator of creative energy that generates unedited processes of development in diverse fields of culture, production, economics and politics. The activities of Cittadellarte pursue a basic objective: to operationally take artistic interventions into every sector of civil society to contribute responsibly and profitably to address the profound changes of our age.

Michelangelo's appearance at Social Kitchen will be a very special occasion/gift for young artists and students.

In 2013, Michelangelo was awarded The Praemium Imperiale, a global arts prize awarded annually by the Japan Art Association.

Michelangelo Pistoletto
Michelangelo Pistoletto was born in Biella in 1933. He began to exhibit his work in 1955 and in 1960 he had his first solo show at Galleria Galatea in Turin. An inquiry into self-portraiture characterizes his early work. In the two-year period 1961-1962 made the first Mirror Paintings, which directly include the viewer and real time in the work, and open up perspective, reversing the Renaissance perspective that had been closed by the twentieth-century avant-gardes. These works quickly brought Pistoletto international acclaim, leading, in the sixties, to one-man shows in important galleries and museums in Europe and the United States. The Mirror Paintings are the foundation of his subsequent artistic output and theoretical thought.

In 1965 and 1966 he produced a set of works entitled Minus Objects, considered fundamental to the birth of Arte Povera, an art movement of which Pistoletto was an animating force and a protagonist. In 1967 he began to work outside traditional exhibition spaces, with the first instances of that "creative collaboration" he developed over the following decades by bringing together artists from different disciplines and diverse sectors of society. In 1975-76 he presented a cycle of twelve consecutive exhibitions, Le Stanze, at the same gallery in Turin. This was the first of a series of complex, year-long works called "time continents". Others are White Year (1989) and Happy Turtle (1992).

In 1978, in a show in Turin, Pistoletto defined two main directions his future artwork would take: Division and Multiplication of the Mirror and Art Takes On Religion. In the early eighties he made a series of sculptures in rigid polyurethane, translated into marble for his solo show in 1984 at Forte di Belvedere in Florence. From 1985 to 1989 he created the series of "dark" volumes called Art of Squalor. During the nineties, with Project Art and with the creation in Biella of Cittadellarte - Fondazione Pistoletto and the University of Ideas, he brought art into active relation with diverse spheres of society with the aim of inspiring and producing responsible social change.

He is the Artistic Director of Evento 2011 - L'art pour une ré-évolution urbaine in Bordeaux. In 2012 he launches Rebirth-day, the First Worldwide Day of Rebirth, an initiative which generated over a hundred events all over the world on 21st December.

In 2013, from April to September, his personal exhibition Michelangelo Pistoletto, année un - le paradis sur terre will take place at the Louvre Museum in Paris.

This lecture is organized by Sakiko Sugawa (Social Kichen).

  • Instructor:Michelangelo Pistolett
  • Date:October 17th (Thursday), 2013
  • Time:17:00 - 19:00
  • Charge:500 yen