Elisabetta Benassi’s work is nourished by a continuous dialogue with the past and with current events. Through research that leads her to explore archives or sound out traces of more or less well-known events, the artist rediscovers moments and figures from the twentieth century that are still capable of questioning the present.
The new project, specifically conceived for the residence that originally belonged to Renzo Bongiovanni Radice and later to Adolfo Pini, is centered on the figure of the Turinese gallery owner Luciano Anselmino, a forgotten figure today, animator of the artistic environment between Rome and Milan in the 1960s and 1970s: the same years in which the Milanese palace of Corso Garibaldi passed from Renzo Bongiovanni Radice, a shy and reserved painter, dedicated for all his life to painting with a personal and introspective look, to his nephew Adolfo Pini, bon vivant, responsible for the testamentary legacy thanks to which the Adolfo Pini Foundation still exists. In those years Italy was experiencing an international cultural ferment in which the impetuous activity of Anselmino, friend and fellow artist of his time, from Man Ray to Andy Warhol, fits perfectly.
On display are a series of objects, some of which are taken from reality, others recreated on the basis of archival findings; all interpreted as the fulcrums of a broader web of historical and cultural references. Through them, Benassi, with a dry style, refers to the figure of Anselmino, to the extraordinary artistic encounters he triggered in the very short span of his activity, to his premature and sudden death.
Beyond the sometimes common aspect, each of these objects, in its singular concreteness, presents itself as a real concentration of meaning capable of condensing the artistic experience of this emblematic figure; and it acts as a vehicle for contents that it is important not only to generate, but also to be able to link together; it alludes to the idea of legacy, of transmission of experience and of value to be preserved; to be rescued from deterioration to ensure possible future use.
Elisabetta Benassi born in Rome 1966 has been active on the international scene since the 2000s. She is the winner of the third edition of the Italian Council award in 2018. She has also participated in the Venice Biennale three times, in 2015 Personne et les Autres, Belgium Pavilion, curated by Katerina Gregos, in 2013 Viceversa, Italy Pavilion, curated by Bartolomeo Pietromarchi and in 2011 ILLUMInations | ILLUMInations, curated by Bice Curiger.
Curated by Gabi Scardi
Fondazione Adolfo Pini
Corso Garibaldi 2
20121 Milan, Italy