|Theatre and refurbishment of la Pilotta, Parma, 1964-1985|
Pen, crayon and coloured pencils on paper, 96.5 x 132 cm. Private collection, courtesy Fondazione Aldo Rossi, Milan
Emilio Vedova (1919-2006) was one of the most important representatives of Italian avant-garde art to emerge from the destruction of World War II. Born into a working-class Venetian family, he taught himself art with a little help from the phantoms of the ancient masters he was surrounded by here in La Serenissima, such as Tintoretto. A strong anti-fascist, he called his work "earthquakes."
|Lacerazione cycle ’77/’78 III, single Plurimo/Binario 1977-1978|
203 x 140 x 35 cm. Paint on wooden panels (2 forms sliding on rails), metal structure
The original Teatro del Mondo was quite an architectural feat, and a large-scale model of Rossi's floating Theater of the World has been reconstructed just for this occasion. The theater was erected during the Theatre Biennale of 1979-1980 out in the shipyards of Fusina, loaded on a barge and tugged to Venice where it was docked next to the Punta della Dogana. It then set off by sea to Dubrovnik in Croatia before it was subsequently dismantled and destroyed.
Rossi believed that architecture sets the stage for life. He described Teatro del Mondo project as "a place where architecture ended and the world of the imagination began." Living, as I do, in Venice, it is easy to feel that the city is one enormous stage set, a rich background in which to meet other colorful characters and experience life, a vibrant setting so different than living in a mechanical city that has cars, or the sterile setting of Any Suburb, Anywhere with the same stores, the same food, the same drinks, the same people.To me, the architecture of a city is another real element added to the theatrical production called the Divine Comedy that we are living here on planet Earth.
"The theater, in which the architecture serves as a possible background, a setting, a building that can be calculated and transformed into the measurements and concrete materials of an often elusive feeling, has been one of my passions."
Vedova, too, designed for the theater, collaborating with the composer, Luigi Nono. From Wikipedia:
Intolleranza 1960 was Luigi Nono's first work for the opera stage and is a flaming protest against intolerance and oppression and the violation of human dignity. The year in the title refers to the time of the work's origin. It was commissioned for the 1969 Venice Biennale by its director Mario Labroca. The first performance was conducted by Bruno Maderna on 13 April 1961 at the Teatro La Fenice in Venice. The stage design was by the famous radical painter Emilio Vedova, a friend of Nono's. The premiere was disrupted by neo-fascists, who shouted "Viva la polizia" during the torture scene. Nono's opponents accused him of poisoning Italian music.
Those are two radically different points of view.
Vedova's obituary in The Guardian sums it up well:
|Photo: Cat Bauer|
This conviction led him, in the 1950s, to fill his pictures with wild patterns of smeared, poured and dripped paint. He became a radical in both politics and technique, truly a Jackson Pollock of the barricades.
The main aim of the Fondazione Emilio e Annabianca Vedova is to promote the art and work of Vedova and to highlight his importance in the history of 20th century art. The themes of "painting -- space-- time -- history" were of upmost importance to Vedova.
Magazzino del Sale, Zattere 266
Spazio Vedova, Zattere 50
June 30 – November 25, 2012
Ciao from Venezia,
Venetian Cat - The Venice Blog