Pier Paolo Calzolari

b. 1943


Pier Paolo Calzolari (b. 1943) is one of the most significant Italian artists of the post-war period and one of the still-active original members of the Arte Povera movement. His 1969 text ‘La casa ideale’, and its realisation through a series of works is considered one of the seminal statements of the movement. His work, concurrent to that of Conceptual art and Post – Minimalism, has rapidly evolved beyond the confines of a defined movement.

Calzolari distinguished himself from other Arte Povera artists through his refusal of the avant-garde’s rejection of the past. His work seeks an equal and horizontal relationship between past, present and future. While his work shared similarities, it veered in a unique direction, bringing in elements of Renaissance painting and the Romantic movement. Calzolari’s sculptural installations are known for capturing ephemera and use elemental materials including frost, fire, salt, lead, water, copper, neon, moss, roses, feathers, eggs and tobacco leaves.

The work of Pier Paolo Calzolari is included in numerous museum collections and has been exhibited at Documenta, MoMA, Fondazione Prada and other prominent institutions.

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2019 Madre Museum, Pier Paolo Calzolari, Painting as a Butterfly, Napoli, Italy

2017 Art Basel – Sector: Unlimited, Basel, Switzerland

And I Say, Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York, USA

2016 Pier Paolo Calzolari 1969-2007, Studio la Città, Verona, Italy

Ensemble, Galerie Kamel Mennour, Paris, France

Un Art Pauvre, Centre Pompidou, Paris, France

Accrochage, Punta della Dogana, Venice, Italy

2015 Drawings, Projects and Works on Paper, Ronchini Gallery, London

2011 Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice