Magazzino Italian Art presents a four-part lecture series, Politics of Labor in Postwar Italian Art, curated by 2021-22 Magazzino Scholar-in-Residence Katie Larson.
In our first lecture, Notes on Making: Art, Labor, and Language in Postwar Rome, Dr. Katie Larson examined the role of art, labor, and language in the work of Emilio Villa, Alberto Burri, Giorgio Ascani (Nuvolo), Mimmo Rotella, and Jannis Kounellis. Villa—a poet and critic—served as the linchpin for this research. Throughout his career, he collaborated with and promoted the art of this diverse group of individuals. He found within their work ideas that mirrored his own artistic philosophy: namely, that poetry and art should not simply reflect the world but instead catalyze new [phonetic and material] realities. Emphasizing the labor of creative production, Villa sought to contribute to Italy’s reconstruction by making and supporting art that emphasized the artist’s role in society as an active agent for change.