Casa ideale at the Villa Paloma
‘Casa ideale’: the Villa Paloma of the Nouveau Musée National de Monaco (NMNM) opened a distinctive retrospective exhibition dedicated to the celebrated artist, Pier Paolo Calzolari.
The exhibition showcases works from the late 1960s to 2014, traversing each stage of the career of the Italian artist from the Arte Povera movement to more contemporary expressions, and from his native Italy to Lisbon, Portugal, where he resides today.
Pier Paolo Calzolari is known for his use of unstable materials like ice, plants and electricity to create installations that question the limits of contemporary art and the very definition of what constitutes a work of art.
He began his artistic career as a painter influenced by American “germinal” painting, before swiftly turning to other, freer forms of artistic expression, such as installation, sculpture and performance art.
Visitors to the Villa Paloma have an opportunity not only to discover the famous Tolomeo installation (1989), a frosted table alluding to the culture of ancient Greece, but also no less enigmatic works such as Tiara con cera e chiodi (2006), which revolves around a key motif of abstraction: the monochrome.
The unique resonance of the materials in his work can be linked to the principles of transmutation used in medieval alchemy, and also to the hermetism of the esoteric writings of Hermes Trismegistus.
Through such works as Luna (Moon, 1979) and still lifes produced in the mid-2000s that combine monochrome painting and sculptural elements, the exhibition shows that, since 1972, the Italian artist has tackled the most important questions raised by contemporary painting.
Calzolari’s manifesto for an ‘ideal house’ (Casa ideale) contrasts sharply with conventional architectural notions. He states, “I want expansion, democracy, madness, alchemy, insanity, rhythm, horizontality.” And, this exhibition is a celebration of passion and sensory intelligence, extending beyond physical space to encompass the worlds of imagination and emotion.
Casa ideale is open from 17.11.23 to 07.04.24
The Nouveau Musée National de Monaco
56, boulevard du Jardin Exotique, 98000 Monaco
Open every day from 10 am to 6 pm