BURRI Prometheia - 40th Anniversary of the Grande Nero Cretto

Lisa Rinzier and Giuseppe Sterparelli

SYMPOSIUM, PERFORMANCE, FILM SCREENINGS, MULTIMEDIA INSTALLATION

                        January 9th and 10th, 2017

 

In 2016, concluding its most extensive retrospective ever dedicate to a single artist, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum emphatically reaffirmed the critical role of Alberto Burri (1915-1995) in the arts of the second half of the 20th century, as a radical forerunner of New Dada, Nouveau Réalisme, Postminimalism, and Arte Povera.

 

Burri’s internment as prisoner of war in Texas, where he began to paint in 1946, dramatically shaped the new spatial forms of his painting and sculpture.  An even greater impact was provided by the great desert landscapes of the American West to which Burri found himself drawn after taking up winter residence in Los Angeles in 1963.

 

Burri Prometheia, a symposium organized by the Department of Italian at UCLA and the Italian Cultural Institute of Los Angeles, aims to examine the heritage of these ties in the largest work Burri ever created outside of Italy, the “Grande Cretto Nero” (Large Black Crack), on the fortieth anniversary of its gifting to UCLA.  The work bears striking witness to an intimate and monumental sublimation of the intensity of matter which the artist first noted in the cracking altarpieces of his fellow Italian, Piero della Francesca, and later in the extraordinary superstrata of California’s Death Valley. 

 

The Grande Nero Cretto, a work of colossal proportions (49 x 16 feet), composed of 700 pieces of fired ceramic transported from the artist’s home town and assembled at the UCLA Sculpture Garden, represents an uncanny fusion of the visual arts and architecture.  Its gifting to UCLA commemorates Burri’s choice to inaugurate his great American traveling exhibition of 1977 precisely at the university.  The sculpture offers imposing testimony to the artist’s choice to reside in Los Angeles during the winters of thirty years of his life.

 

CO-ORGANIZERS UCLA Department of Italian & The Italian Cultural Institute of Los Angeles

SPONSORS  Fondazione Palazzo Albizzini Collezione Burri (Burri Foundation), Italy, UCLA’s Division of Humanities, College of Letters & Science, Department of Art History, and Hammer Museum

CURATORS Giuseppe Sterparelli, Thomas Harrison

Under the patronage of Italian Ministry for Cultural Heritage 

Tags: 

Receive More Stories Like This In Your Inbox

Recommended

The Charioteer of Mozia: meeting the Greek Youth in Siciliy

There are many Greek treasures in Sicily and one of these is on a little island off the coast of Marsala, Mozia. Here, in a small museum that you...
Cannoli siciliani have a huge identity-defining power: Italian bakeries all over the world make of their presence on the shelves a symbol of “italianità” and heritage associated with only a handful of other products. Photo by siculodoc

The sweetest thing: cannolo siciliano and its amazing history

Cannolo siciliano: is there any other Italian dessert this popular in the world? Tiramisù may be one of its more glorious competitors, but cannolo...
The little town of Cascia is known, above all, as the home of one of the most venerated saints in the world, Santa Rita da Cascia — Photo by LisovS

Umbria, Land of Saints and Traditions (Part I): Cascia

There has never been any doubt that the Umbria region in the heart of Italy is a real “Land of the Saints”. Flocks of people come to this side of the...
The Abbey of Montecassino

The Abbey of Montecassino

Slow Tour riding a horse, along the path of St Benedict that leads to the great Abbey of Montecassino, rising up above the Liri valley. Beneath the...
St Benedict's Sacro Speco

St Benedict's "Sacro Speco" (Holy Cave)

The so called Sacro Speco in Subiaco is a place of hermitage that has become work of architecture and art. Here is the cave where the young Benedict...

Weekly in Italian

Recent Issues