After the presence of Jan Fabre, Urs Fisher and Jeff Koons and the presentation of a work by Giuseppe Penone, with Francesco Vezzoli Piazza della Signoria will once again be the fulcrum of the contemporary in the cradle par excellence of the Renaissance. Francesco Vezzoli is also the first living Italian artist to create a site-specific work for Piazza della Signoria, specially conceived
Palazzo Vecchio – Studiolo di Francesco I
Exhibition open until 2.02.2022
Monday – Sunday
With two new sculptures in Piazza della Signoria and Palazzo Vecchio, Francesco Vezzoli will be the protagonist of Francesco Vezzoli in Florence, curated by Cristiana Perrella and Sergio Risaliti. The project – presented by the Museo Novecento in Florence and the Luigi Pecci Center for Contemporary Art in Prato, created with the patronage of the Municipality of Florence and the organization of Mus.e – will put contemporary art in dialogue with the historical and artistic heritage of the city .
In Piazza della Signoria a monumental twentieth-century rampant lion, installed on an ancient base, crushes a Roman head from the second century AD between its jaws, in a pastiche between different artistic eras that has become the hallmark of many recent works by the artist.
Inside the Studiolo of Francesco I de ‘Medici in Palazzo Vecchio, a precious casket full of mysterious iconographic, esoteric and astrological suggestions created between 1569 and 1573, for the first time ever it houses a work of contemporary art. A bronze “metaphysical” head is grafted onto a Roman toga figure, a citation from De Chirico’s The Archaeologists, one of the works that best represents the recovery of classicism in modern times.
With these works, Francesco Vezzoli gives us new disturbing muses, recomposing the fragments of a lost civilization, reminding us that art is always, first of all, a mental fact and that ready-mades, ancient-modern assemblages, are a practice with very ancient roots, as the Ganymede by Benevenuto Cellini teaches us, made by recomposing parts of an ancient sculpture.
Compared to the Renaissance restorations, Vezzoli fits into the conceptual path of De Chirico and Savinio, inventors of metamorphosis and mysterious collages, and instead of seeking formal harmony, he composes disconcerting hybrids, linguistic collages that regenerate the forms of tradition but have a life own.
A surreal world made up of archeology and fantasy, memory and invention, where classical culture, instead of an immutable, timeless model, becomes matter to be broken down and reassembled, to be made current in the present, finding in hybridization with other themes, other eras, the starting point for artistic – and not ideological – reflection on topics such as identity, authorship, and on how to remember the past, without denying it or erasing it. Because freedom is also based on leaving images with their mysterious, poetic and transcendental power.
Ela Bialkowska OKNOstudio