Palazzo Grassi is committing to exploring the exhibitions that have taken place there since the 1950s and their significance in the history of art and of contemporary culture with a series of invitations to various researchers and organizations.


« Palazzo Grassi <br/>and the history <br/>of its exhibitions »
<a class="switch">Text</a><br> <b>Martin Bethenod</b><br> <span style="display: none;"></span>



<span class="alinea"></span>From the first exhibitions staged at Palazzo Grassi, reopened in 1951 by Franco and Paolo Marinotti as the Centro Internazionale delle Arti e del Costume, to recent exhibitions by artists invited by the Pinault Collection, including Urs Fischer, Rudolf Stingel, Martial Raysse, Damien Hirst, Albert Oehlen, and Luc Tuymans: Palazzo Grassi has long been a laboratory, unique in its genre, devoted to exploring all possible forms that the exhibition can adopt. For the past seven decades—as the importance of exhibitions has grown to become an important motor in art history, considered a medium in itself by artists—this experimental approach and willingness to redefine the scope of the exhibition has been a mainstay of Palazzo Grassi’s identity throughout each of its successive incarnations. <br/> <br/> <span class="alinea"></span>The exhibitions that have been presented in the eighteenth-century palazzo on the Grand Canal—by the Marinottis, by Fiat, and by François Pinault—have captivated a number of art critics and historians and theorists of art, architecture, and culture. In the fall of 2018, two initiatives developed by Palazzo Grassi — Punta della Dogana — Teatrino made it possible to examine this unique history more closely. <br/> <br/> <span class="alinea"></span>A colloquium, organized by Stefano Collicelli Cagol, art historian and curator of the Rome Quadriennale, brought together ten historians and university professors, including Marco De Michelis (IUAV, Venice), Romy Golan (City University, New York), Luca Scarlini (writer, historian, and performer), Luca Massimo Barbero (Fondation Cini and Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice), and Stefania Portinari (Università Ca’ Foscari, Venice). They discussed Palazzo Grassi’s first incarnation as a cultural center, during the period 1951–61, when a remarkable number of strikingly original and dynamic projects took place at Palazzo Grassi, exploring the relationship between art and fashion. These included solo exhibitions by contemporary artists such as Asger Jorn and Lucio Fontana, and exhibition designs by architects and designers such as Bruno Munari and Carlo Scarpa. The trilogy “Vitalità,” presented between 1959 and 1961 and curated by Willem Sandberg, the director of Amsterdam’s Stedelijk Museum, is considered the highlight of this era. <br/> <br/> <span class="alinea"></span>The second initiative focuses on 1984 to 2005, when Fiat, mostly through Gianni Agnelli’s efforts, developed a new kind of exhibition, combining scientific ambitions with a showmanship that would become a model for both public and private cultural programming in the late twentieth century, in Europe and throughout the world. Considerable archival holdings documenting these memorable exhibitions have been uncovered. They will be conserved and studied in partnership with the Historical Archives of the Venice Biennale. We will continue to explore the Palazzo’s past through this important trove of documents—in which we might glimpse Pontus Hulten, Jean Clair, Kynaston McShine, John Cage, or Jean Tinguely, mingling in Gae Aulenti’s spectacular sets.
Exhibition views <br/> « Dalla natura all’arte », <br/> Centro internazionale delle arti e del costume, <br/> Palazzo Grassi, 1960.
Exhibition views <br/> « Dalla natura all’arte », <br/> Centro internazionale delle arti e del costume, <br/> Palazzo Grassi, 1960.
Exhibition views <br/> « Dalla natura all’arte », <br/> Centro internazionale delle arti e del costume, <br/> Palazzo Grassi, 1960.
 

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