Exhibitions at Palazzo Collicola. Raspi and Notargiacomo. Opening Saturday 14 December

Palazzo Collicola, two exhibitions will open Saturday 14 December at 11.30: “Raspi: collages e dipinti 1959-1963” curated by Giorgio Flamini and “Convergenze. Notargiacomo e la collezione della GAM di Spoleto” curated by Marco Tonelli.

The exhibition on Piero Raspi focuses on an artist who was born in Spoleto, was a member of the “Spoleto Six”, and is featured in the city’s Modern Art Gallery collection. In “Convergenze”, Gianfranco Notargiacomo interacts with artists he personally met and with their works stored in Santo Chiodo.

Experimentations that originated between 1958 and 1964, the Collages represent the climax of an important aesthetical investigation by Piero Raspi. Even in his earliest works dating to 1958 when he was still a member of the “Spoleto Six”, the abstract and refined architecture of simple juxtaposed and overlapping sheets seem to be crossed by vital flashes that will gradually become more marked. By the turn of the decade, the structure of the works becomes more dynamic with the emergence, among the layers of paper, of components such as photographs, letters and three-dimensional objects. This reference to everyday reality gives the Collages a “non-sense” energy, which puts the works closer to the contemporary new-dada decontextualization of American Robert Rauschenberg. Production alternates with large informal paintings, albeit with obvious differences: from dimensions to materials, from chromatic to spatial impact. But what most differentiates the paintings from the Collages is the presence in the latter of an ironic vein, light and subtle like a veil. A common characteristic of all is the fact that for years they have been hidden in the archives of the author and for this reason they are absolutely new to some.

The exhibition opens Saturday 14 December at 11.30 and will be visitable till Sunday 8 March 2020, from Friday to Sunday, on Thursday 26 December and on Monday 6 January 10.30 to 13.00 and 15.00 to 17.30. 

In many ways, Notargiacomo is a forerunner of non-codified languages who can pass from form to image, from structure to painting with the same skill and intelligence. For this reason he represented the solution to knots opposing to each other, contrasting and intertwined, converging and diverging at the same time. Like many other museums, the Spoleto Modern Art Gallery has a rich deposit of works, mostly donations or acquisitions made over the years, some of which destined to rotate over time to be put on display in temporary exhibitions. For his exhibition, Notargiacomo welcomed the idea of  establishing a dialogue between his works and some of those from the deposit, picking up twenty bu authors with whom he had an actual relation, including Burri, Sadun, Bendini, Pace, Vacchi, Asdrubali, Rossano, Gandini, Cascella, Ceroli, Boille, Cotani, Mattiacci, Luzzi, and Pozzati. The “Convergenze” exhibition opens on Saturday 14 December at 11.30 in Palazzo Collicola and will be visitable till Sunday 8 March, 2020. 

The exhibition project takes the title from the famous installation Le nostre divergenze, the artist’s first personal exhibition held in Rome in 1971 at the La Tartaruga Gallery by Plinio De Martiis, then repeated several times over the decades in various museum spaces, including the National Gallery of Modern Art in Rome: over two hundred colored plastic dolls that invaded the gallery in all its spaces. Upon its opening, Herald Tribune columnist Edith Schloss qualified the exhibition “the most surprising show”. In the spaces of the ground floor of Palazzo Collicola, right where the permanent collection of the Modern Art Gallery was once located, about 140 little men will talk with the works selected from the collection’s deposit, in a continuous flow between memory and present, as if they were witnesses enchanted by an apparition, by an unveiling.

On the occasion of the exhibition, Notargiacomo will donate one of his sculptures, a typical Takete, to the Spoleto Modern Art Gallery, which will also be part of the exhibition along with other sculptures in the series, symbolically bringing together, as the title says, his works with those of the museum. During the exhibition, a public meeting will be held in which the artist will illustrate his links with the individual artists with whom he has chosen to dialogue. The exhibition is organized in collaboration with students from the Pietro Vannucci Academy of Fine Arts in Perugia and the RUFA in Rome. 

The exhibition will be visitable from Friday to Sunday, on Thursday 26 December and on Monday 6 January 10.30 to 13.00 and 15.00 to 17.30. 


Piero Raspi – Born on 12 February 1926 in Spoleto. In the Umbrian town he will start his successful artistic career within post-cubism, and in the early 1950s will be among the founders of the Spoleto Group and of the Spoleto Prize. From the mid-1950s the main reference becomes the informal sphere, from which he learns new expressive possibilities of the matter outside any remaining figurative need. In 1957, he joined the gravitating artists around the “L ‘Attico” gallery in Rome, where he will exhibit cyclically. In 1958  he participates in the Venice Biennale, reaching the international spotlight. In this period he was identified as one of the protagonists of the informal material, akin to the poetics of Burri and Tàpies. With the beginning of the 1960s he held numerous solo and group exhibitions in Italy, including the Venice Biennale and the Rome Quadrennial. Abroad he exhibits in numerous cities, among others, London, Los Angeles, Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Stuttgart, Paris, Brussels, Cologne, Montreal, Madrid, Barcelona, Edinburgh, Chicago, Lucerne, Tel Aviv, Salzburg , Zurich and Tokyo. In 1967 he went to the United States settling in Pennsylvania. Here it compares with new research from Pop Art. During this period he is identified as one of the protagonist of matterist informal, close to Burri ‘s and Tàpies’ poetics. At the beginning of the 1960s he holds many exhibitions in Italy, both personal and collective, including the Venice Biennale and the Rome Quadriennale. He also often exhibits abroad, in London, Los Angeles, São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Stuttgart, Paris, Brussels, Cologne, Montreal, Madrid, Barcelona, Edinburgh, Chicago, Lucerne, Tel Aviv, Salzburg, Zurich and Tokyo. In 1967 he settles in Pennsylvania where he confronts with the Pop Art new researches, the outcoming paintings exhibited in Philadelphia and New York. A new phase starts in 1978 and his works are marked by unprecedented chromatism. With the new millennium he embraces other creative forms and materials, such as steel. In 2001 he creates a wall sculpture in steel sheets for the Albornoz Palace, that echoes the abstract, refined architectures of the late-1950s Collages. In the 2010s he dedicates himself to the critical review, cataloguing and restoration of his own body of works. www.pieroraspi.com

Gianfranco Notargiacomo (Rome, 1945) In the 1970s he exhibits at the Galleria La Tartaruga in Rome, the Galleria La Salita, the Palazzo delle Esposizioni. In 1980 he took part in the exhibition created by Flavio Caroli Magico Primario, at the Palazzo dei Diamanti in Ferrara. In those years started the deep relationship with Emilio Vedova, who would nominate him for the Prize of the Presidency of the Republic at the National Academy of San Luca. In 1982, 1986 and 2011 he was invited to the Venice Biennale and throughout the 1980s he held personal exhibitions at Castel Sant’Elmo in Naples, Casa del Mantegna in Mantua, Laboratory Museum of the Sapienza University of Rome, Palazzo Reale in Milan. In 2009 he holds the exhibition Le nostre divergenze at the Modern Art National Gallery in Rome. In 2001 he is in China, in Hangzhou, by the Zhejiang Daily Ideal Culture Development Company, then in Shanghai, at the Heng Yuanxiang Museum, where he creates two big Takètes. In 2013 he holds the anthological exhibition A grandi linee at the Forte Malatesta in Ascoli Piceno. 

The many invitations to collective exhibitions received include those to the VIII and XI Biennale de Paris and to the Sydney Biennale; he has exhibited at the Hayward Gallery in London, at the Frankfurter Kunstverein in Frankfurt, at the Museum of San Paolo in Brazil, at the Taiwan Museum of Art and is present in the 20th Century Italian Artists collection at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He lectured at the Academy of Fine Arts in L’Aquila, Florence and Rome, where in 2015 he received the title of Academic Master Emeritus. In 2013, by initiative of the President of the Republic, he received the honor of Commander of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic. www.notargiacomo.com

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