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Alfredo Pirri _ Luogo Pensiero – Luce

from 21 June to 10 August 2024

Museolaboratorio d’Arte Contemporanea

Opening: Friday 21 June, 6 p.m.

Alfredo Pirri

exhibition curator
Enzo De Leonibus

From 21 June to 10 August 2024, the Museolaboratorio d’Arte Contemporanea of Città Sant’Angelo (Pe) presents Alfredo Pirri. Luogo Pensiero Luce, a project realized with the support of PAC 2022-2023 – Piano per l’Arte Contemporanea, promoted by the Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity of the Italian Ministry of Culture.  The site-specific work, entitled Compagni e Angeli – per Città Sant’Angelo, will open to the public on Friday 21 June at 6PM. Incorporated into the museum’s permanent collection, it can be seen Thursday through Saturday from 5PM to 9PM and Sunday by appointment from 11AM to 2PM.

The title of the piece is borrowed from lines of a song by the group Radiodervish, La Rosa di Turi, about Antonio Gramsci’s imprisonment in Turi, where he wrote his famed notebooks. ‘Compagni e Angeli – per Città Sant’Angelo’ is part of a series of works on the theme of captivity and the desire to escape. The three-dimensional work, intended for visitors to experience only partially, stands in a room of the museum as a small parallelepiped-shaped environment composed of walls and reflective surfaces. The methacrylate walls are coloured by the artist during production and mixed with dried feathers from geese previously slaughtered for human consumption. With the reflections of the natural light from the windows, the museum is pervaded by an entirely new light.

‘Compagni e Angeli – per Città Sant’Angelo’ grew out of Alfredo Pirri’s close relationship with Museolaboratorio’s long history of transformation. Following its life as a Clarissa Convent and later as an internment camp and tobacco factory, the first seed for the creation of Museolaboratorio was sown in 1996 with the Nuovo Luogo per L’Arte exhibition, in which Alfredo Pirri participated along with other artists.

The work is inspired by his associations with the place, the landscape in which the museum is set and its history. As director Enzo De Leonibus pointed out, “Everything comes in from this view, so how can we not think about this relationship with nature, light and thought? The work proposed in Alfredo Pirri’s project ‘Compagni e Angeli – per Città Sant’Angelo’ invites visitors to think this way – a choice, I believe, that is consistent with the meaning of this place.”

The project is supported by PAC2022-2023 – Piano per l’Arte Contemporanea, promoted by the Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity of the Italian Ministry of Culture.


Alfredo Pirri (Cosenza, 1957) lives and works in Rome. His artistic practice embraces various disciplines, including painting, sculpture, architecture and installation. His first solo shows date back to the 80s. In 1988, he exhibited in the Venice Biennale and, in 1999, in the collective exhibition ‘Minimalia: An Italian Vision in 20th Century Art’, curated by Achille Bonito Oliva at MoMA PS1 in New York. In 2003, he received a Laurea Honoris Causa in Progettazione Architettonica, from Università degli Studi di Roma Tre.

He often collaborates with architects on multidisciplinary projects in which art and architecture interact harmoniously. In recent years, he has participated in major public works, including the restoration of historic buildings such as the Kursaal Theatre in Bari and the Maggio Fiorentino Theatre in Florence. Pirri’s work has always been marked by his attention to space, an interest he defines as “political”, in the sense of an attempt to reveal something necessary to our very survival, a sort of battle in favour of existence.  Each of his works becomes a place that is at once spatial, emotional and temporal, into which visitors can enter to immerse themselves in disorienting, destabilizing chromatic experiences. In essence, Pirri succeeds in creating environments out of light.