Eighteenth Giornata del Contemporaneo

Saturday October 8th, 2022


Giorgio Andreotta Calò for the Eighteenth Giornata del Contemporaneo, Icarus, 2021 - 2022


Saturday 8 October 2022 sees the return of the Giornata del Contemporaneo: the great event promoted by AMACI – Association of Italian Contemporary Art Museums, and held with the support of the Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity of the Ministry of Culture, as well as the collaboration of the Directorate-General for Public and Cultural Diplomacy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.


Now in its eighteenth edition – which will take place as per norm throughout the country, involving museums, foundations, public and private institutions, galleries, studios and artists’ spaces – the Giornata del Contemporaneo will be back in October, aiming to showcase the renewed vigour of contemporary art in Italy, in the wake of the restrictions imposed by the two-year pandemic. However, the event will maintain a hybrid format – both physical and digital – to encourage and enhance potential participation with both online and offline offerings, and will revolves around the theme of ecology, bound up with that of sustainability: global issues that place us before the need to rethink the contemporary art system through a renewed awareness and a more widespread sensitivity towards the theme.


In order to flesh out this reflection, the directors of the associated museums have decided to entrust Giorgio Andreotta Calò (Venice, 1979) with the creation of the guiding image for the event, which in the past years has seen the involvement of Michelangelo Pistoletto (2006), Maurizio Cattelan (2007), Paola Pivi (2008), Luigi Ontani (2009), Stefano Arienti (2010), Giulio Paolini (2011), Francesco Vezzoli (2012), Marzia Migliora (2013), Adrian Paci (2014), Alfredo Pirri (2015), Emilio Isgrò (2016), Liliana Moro (2017), Marcello Maloberti (2018), Eva Marisaldi (2019) and Armin Linke (2021).


The image chosen by the artist is Icarus (2021–2022), the latest piece in an articulated project created by Giorgio Andreotta Calò since 2019. From the shadows, a moth emerges in the foreground, its wings concealing the face of a young man who seems be offering it his hand to rest on in a kindly gesture. The lepidopteran and the young man appear to be communicating, and for a moment the moth’s thin wings seem to become an extension of the young man’s fingers, as in the start of an act of metamorphosis triggered by the setting sun. Dusk thus serves as a moment of possibility, that realm of passage between the known and the unknown, in which a teenager turns into a young man and, by spreading his still fragile wings for the first time, takes on the responsibility of becoming an adult and flying off alone in the world.

In the year the Giornata del Contemporaneo turns eighteen, Giorgio Andreotta Calò’s image seems to respond in a symbolically open way to the invitation to reflect on the environmental crisis, emphasising the importance of passing the baton to the new generations, the adults of tomorrow, to whom we give the responsibility of building a better future than the present we bequeath to them.


Once again this year, the Giornata del Contemporaneo will be extended abroad from Saturday 8 October to Friday 14 October 2022 thanks to the diplomatic-consular network of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, comprising embassies, consulates and Italian Cultural Institutes. In collaboration with the Directorate-General for Public and Cultural Diplomacy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and thanks to the support of the Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity of the Ministry of Culture, the participation of AMACI directors and managers will be encouraged in events organised by the Farnesina’s foreign network and by contemporary art-related organisations operating in the countries of reference.


As in previous editions, the Eighteenth Giornata del Contemporaneo will feature several sets of activities and special programming in AMACI member museums, which will focus specifically on activities aimed at the eighteen-year-old public; initiatives developed in collaboration with MAECI’s foreign network (embassies, consulates and Italian Cultural Institutes abroad); the involvement of the network of the Luoghi del Contemporaneo (‘Places of the Contemporary’), as promoted by the Ministry of Culture’s Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity; and finally, the proposals of other organisations now joining the event which, alongside those from previous editions, will contribute to making the event even more widespread, highlighting the broad network of cultural realities that strive to promote the various languages of Italian contemporary art on the national and international stage. As always, the event is characterised by free admission and free participation in all initiatives.


As a testament to the event's well-established prominence and the importance of its role in the national system, Head of State Sergio Mattarella awarded the Giornata del Contemporaneo with the Medal of the President of the Republic again this year.

This year’s event is once more supported by the Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity of the Ministry of Culture, with the collaboration of the Directorate-General for National Promotion of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, and the patronage of Rappresentanza in Italia della Commissione Europea, Senato della Repubblica, Camera dei Deputati, Presidenza del Consiglio dei Ministri, Ministero della Cultura, Ministero degli Affari Esteri e della Cooperazione Internazionale, Conferenza delle Regioni e delle Province Autonome, UPI – Unione Province d’Italia, ANCI – Associazione Nazionale Comuni Italiani and ICOM Italia.


Finally, the Eighteenth Giornata del Contemporaneo also provides the opportunity to present AMACI’s new corporate image. Its rebranding was carried out by M&C Saatchi, following the call for proposals for the strategic communication and branding of cultural and territorial enhancement projects 2022: a funding programme supported by the Fondazione Italia Patria della Bellezza.


At AMACI’s request, the creative agency was inspired by the rich variety of the twenty-four museums that make up the Association, which, in their shared commitment to contemporary art, represent a wide range of museum institutions with diverse identities. The new logo and visual identity are characterised by transformation, movement and the use of colour. The central element of the dynamic logo is the letter ‘M’: the twenty-four M’s in fact refer to the twenty-four museums, and their diversity thus modifies the logo each time, triggering a continuous change that also involves the other letters, rotating on their own axes. Meanwhile the use of colour, starting from a broad and distinctive palette, creates new customised combinations each time for the various initiatives, again underlining the dynamism of art and the variety of activities proposed by AMACI members.


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Born in Venice in 1979, he lives and works between Italy and Holland.

He studied sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts in Venice and at the Kunsthochschule in Berlin, graduating in 2005 with a thesis on Gordon Matta-Clark. Between 2001 and 2007, he worked as an assistant to Ilya and Emilia Kabakov. In 2008, he moved to Holland, where he was artist-in-residence at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam (2009–2011). In 2011, Calò’s work was presented at the 54th Venice Biennale directed by Bice Curiger. In 2012, he won the Premio Italia per l’arte contemporanea promoted by the MAXXI Museum in Rome with the work Prima che sia notte. Between 2012 and 2013, he was artist-in-residence at the Centre National d’Art Contemporain in Villa Arson (Nice, France). In 2014, he won the Premio New York, sponsored by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In 2017, Calò was one of three artists invited to represent Italy in the Pavilion curated by Cecilia Alemani as part of the 57th Venice Biennale. In 2017, with the project Anastasis, he won the second edition of the Italian Council competition promoted by the Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity of the Ministry of Culture, for the staging of a monumental installation presented in 2018 at the Oude Kerk in Amsterdam. In 2019, a solo exhibition was dedicated to his work at Pirelli HangarBicocca curated by Roberta Tenconi.


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