A journey through the multi-layered and pluralistic research of Corrado Levi, artist, writer, architect, professor, collector and activist as well as undoubtedly one of the most striking and fascinating figures on the contemporary artistic and cultural scene.
The chosen sphere of observation is that of the visual arts via a systematic reading of approximately 150 works, many previously unseen, as well as valuable contributions by Luca Massimo Barbero and Beppe Finessi, a Maria Villa interview with the artist and a biographic profile developed by Damiano Gullì.
Altogether the illustrations take the form of a visual and narrative itinerary with the works gathered in theme sections with fascinating titles that convey Levi’s rich and multifaceted visual and semantic alphabet.
The main key is the topic of the body, continually recurring in multiple variants in the Levi poetic, from his early works to the large canvases of the 1980s and the most recent installations and performances.
Although rarely explicitly portrayed and more often sensed via allusions and references, the artist sees the body as the “chosen” place, indirectly evoked in a powerful and poetic synecdoche – in other words, in an emotional and physical space capable of gathering, containing, shaping and amplifying Levi’s poetic beyond its boundaries.
The book is sponsored by the artist himself and Milan’s Galleria RIBOT, which represents him.
The graphic design is by Leonardo Sonnoli who, in dialogue with the artist, has evoked the topic of the body on the cover where the artist’s name is composed using fingerprints, a physical trace of a bodily presence but also a visual transposition of his authorship.
Bilingual Italian/English editions. Translation by Adam Victor for Scriptum, Rome.
Corrado Levi was born in Turin and a pupil of Carlo Mollino and Franco Albini before becoming a professor of architectural design at the Faculty of Architecture of Milan Polytechnic. There, he invited very diverse figures to his courses, from Richard Long to Alighiero Boetti, Rammellzee and the DJ Nicola Guiducci. In the 1980s, he began acting as a cultural organiser, especially in Milan where he promoted numerous artistic, social and political initiatives. His relationship with the US culture, particularly New York’s East Village Group, has led him to develop an experimental and anti-conformist cultural outlook. The new-generation artists of the early 1980s were first seen in Italy in his studio in Corso San Gottardo in Milan, where they initiated their ascent in the world of international art. His exhibitions, both solo as an artist and collective in the role of curator, are events that arouse curiosity and interest not only in the art sphere but also in those of fashion, design and communication, bearing witness to an artistic exploration driven by strong cross-contaminations and in constant renewal.