Arte Povera

Arte Povera (translated as “poor art") was an art movement that began in Italy in the late 1960s. The movement was fairly short-lived, ending in the early 1970s, and took place throughout various major Italian cities including Turin (where it originated from), Milan, Rome, Naples, Bologna and Venice. The name of the movement was coined by Germano Celant, an Italian art critic, in 1967. This was a period of political upheaval in Italy, in which artists were particularly active. Art was used by many politically active artists as a way to attack governmental, cultural and institutional values of the time. 

The 1967 exhibition titled Im Spazio (The Space of Thoughts) was held in Genoa and curated by Celant, and is considered to be the first exhibition of the Arte Povera movement. The artists exhibited works using unconventional materials and styles, in a bid to challenge corporate mentality and values. Artsper has collated a selection of the key figures of Arte Povera, as well as artists inspired by its radical style, including Enrico Castellani, Jannis Kounellis and Giulio Paolini. Come with us as we delve into this legendary Italian artistic movement today!

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