XLIX VASTO PRIZE
for Contemporary Art

ARCHAEOLOGY TO COMEMetamorphosis of old and classicItalian contemporary art

edited by Silvia Pegoraro

Vasto, Scuderie of Palazzo Aragona, July 9 to October 23 2016

Saturday, July 9, 2016 at 18.30 will open, in the magnificent setting of the Scuderie of Palazzo Aragona in Vasto, the exhibition XLIX VASTO PRIZE FOR CONTEMPORARY ART: ARCHEOLOGIE TO COME – Metamorphosis of old and classic Italian contemporary art (edited by Silvia Pegoraro), open until 23 October 2016. The exhibition of the is sponsored by the city of Vasto and Events Art and Culture Committee of Vasto, and organized by the Vasto Prize Committee for Contemporary Art – chaired by Roberto Bontempo since 1959, the year of the historic Prize foundation. The event is under the patronage of the Ministry of Heritage and Culture, the Ministry of Education and the Abruzzo region. With a contribution of  NACA MEDICAL -Instruments and Health Services, Teramo.

Two paintings and a sculpture of Eros Renzetti exhibited Armor, 2014; Dumbledore, 2015 and under Arachne, 2016

The exhibition of the XLIX BROAD PRIZE FOR CONTEMPORARY ART, ARCHAEOLOGY TO COME, Intends to be seen as a journey into the complex and articulated dimension of “classicism” and a dialogue with the past that has been developing in the work of Italian artists from past generations, between the twentieth and twenty-first century: from those already operating in the first decades of the twentieth century, like de Chirico, Sironi, Campigli, Marino Marini, up to the younger generations that made an appearance on the art scene in the beginning of this new century, passing through the “middle” generations, with multiple creative and interpretative vocations: from revisitations of classical symbols that are both ironic and melancholic, to the so-called “Italian Pop Art” (Angeli, Festa, Ceroli), to the chromatic plasticity and mythologies of the Transavantgarde, to the postmodern metaphysical enigmas and educated interpretations of anachronism , not to mention extraordinary artists that with their complex culture and expressive complexity make it difficult to classify, such as Ugo Attardi, Fabrizio Clerici, Pisani, or the great sculptor Pietro Cascella Pescara.
Placing itself in this research perspective, the 2016 Broad Contemporary Art Prize exhibition, therefore, wants to be both historical and current, focusing the viewer’s attention on some artists – well-known from the past or currently operating in the modern and contemporary Italian context – from the 30’s to today – that, by exploring the old and classic, have interpreted it by finding the deep roots of the contemporary world and capturing creative potential and future prospects. Artists that, by weaving the threads of a vital relationship with cultural and artistic history, have been able to enhance the expressive force of the subject matter and form and the emotional and conceptual suggestions at the same time.
One of the starting points from which the design of the exhibition consists, is the historical and theoretical views outlined in the book by Salvatore Settis, The future of the “classic” (Einaudi, Torino, 2004). According to the great scholar, the concepts of “classic” and “classicism”, in contemporary culture outline two opposing trends: on the one hand, in the “general” culture, the discourse on the “classic” looks increasingly superficial, stereotypical and trivial, merely extrapolating a few visual fragments of classicism, emptied of their original meaning and context; on the other hand, on the level of scientific and historical research, the physiognomy of the “classic” is getting increasingly complex, metamorphic and “contaminated”: it blurs the idea of a “purity” of the “classic” in its Greek roots, while developing that of classicism as a crossroads of cultures and different religions, Eastern and Western, formal continuous metamorphosis and icono-graphic and conceptual contamination. This research has resulted in important books like The God to come, Manfred Franck (on the relationship between the Dionysian cult and Christianity), or Black Athena – The Afro-Asiatic roots of classical civilization, Martin Bernal (who argues that classical Greek culture has undergone considerable influences from the Phoenicians and the Egyptians).
The Italian visual artists featured in this exhibition tend to evidently express this complexity, ambiguity and polymorphism of “classicism” as highlighted by the scholars. A trend that thus distances and deeply differentiates these artists from common use and the stereotypical idea of “classic” and “old”. In the work of these artists techniques and fantastic calculations, metaphysical and alchemical motifs interweave with classical influences and references to the myths that are sometimes revisited in a hyper-modern way, with the aid of digital photographic techniques come together and overlap: manifests an idea of classic which is well suited to the concerns of contemporary artists, in fact, in some ways it appears able to stimulate and increase it. An idea that implies the freedom to tradere (transmit) but also betray the forms, in a continuous short-circuit between the subjective and objective perception of reality.
The relationship between old and new – between tradition and innovation – thus becomes a subversive value, and the classic is never the immutable form, but the form that lends itself to endless interpretations, metamorphosis and contamination.


Featured artists::
FRANCO ANGELI
UGO ATTARDI
MASSIMO CAMPIGLI
PIETRO CASCELLA
TOMMASO CASCELLA
MASSIMO CATALANI
LUIGI CECINELLI
MARIO CEROLI
SANDRO CHIA
FABRIZIO CLERICI
GIORGIO DE CHIRICO
STEFANO DI STASIO
LUCA FARINA
TANO FESTA
FLAVIA FRANCESCHINI
CESARE GIULIANI
GIANFRANCO GOBERTI
ANGELA MALTONI
MARINO MARINI
GIUSEPPE MODICA
SIMONE PELLEGRINI
STEFANO PIALI
VETTOR PISANI
EROS RENZETTI
RUGGERO SAVINIO
MARIO SIRONI


TECHNICAL DATA SHEET
Show: XLIX BROAD PRIZE OF CONTEMPORARY ART ARCHEOLOGIE TO COME – Metamorphosis of the ancient and classical art contemporary Italian
Edited by: Silvia Pegoraro
Venue: Scuderie of Palazzo Aragona
Address: 26  Via Aragona, Vasto (Chieti)
Opening: Saturday 9 – July 2016, 18:30
Exhibition period: July 9 – 23 October 2016
Admission: Free
Hours: July and August: from 17.30 to 21.00; September and October: from 17.00 to 20.30; Also Sunday from 10.30 to 12.30; MONDAY ‘CLOSED
Catalogue: Edizioni Martintype – Colonnella (Teramo)
Press: Michele Tana, tel. 329 0611860

INFORMATION: www.premiovasto.it; info@premiovasto.it