Piero Gilardi at MAXXI, Rome

Art must become part of life, but as life is alienated, we also need to commit to liberating and disalienating life. –– Piero Gilardi

With over 60 works, from the famous Nature-carpets to the interactive installations and through to the Living Art Park of Turin, along with important pieces exhibited for the first time in years or reconstructed for the occasion, the exhibition reviews the career of a master for whom art and life are identified with and become militant commitment, starting out from that as an ecologist.

Fifty-year career in which art, criticism and politics are intertwined.
From the complex relationship between man and nature, it investigates the era of consumerism and the use of new technologies in a presentation tackling and exploring themes such as ecology, the relational nature of art and social and political commitment.It is divided into four sections, each of which includes both works and archive materials (sketches, texts, original photographs, small works) allowing a comprehensive overview of the artists thinking and poetic.

When, in the late Sixties, Gilardi realised that militancy did not enjoy the space in the world of art he had hoped for, he lost interest in the production of “works of art” and devoted himself to creating “useful” works in the political and social ambit, working in psychiatric institutions, factories and working class areas and collaborating with the student movement. This section features Andreotti Volante (1977) and the mask of Agnelli (1977) used in protests in the Seventies, the Masso della Crisi (2012), an inflatable made for the May 1st march, and numerous other projects and costumes made to criticize the political class, defend the environment and civil rights, arouse awareness of peace and tolerance in what has been defined as a “carnivalization” of the artist’s world.

Nature Forever by Piero Gilardi
Curated by Hou Hanru, Bartolomeo Pietromarchi and Marco Scotini
MAXXI, Rome
Through October 15