Michela Moro

  • Lucrezia Calabro Visconti and Guido Costa, “Abstract Sex Exhibition.” Photo: Silvia Pastore.
    diary November 19, 2019

    Grand Torino

    RELAX AND DO IT! While large fairs in European capitals tend to be stressful and stressed out, my four days last week in Turin, the onetime hub of Arte Povera, for the lone Italian art fair dedicated solely to contemporary art, was both elegant and substantial. I just went with the flow—or flows. After sampling Artissima’s assortment of 208 galleries from 43 countries, you’d be hard-pressed to feel that you overlooked anything aesthetically fundamental in the city of Turin, apart, perhaps, from the museums and tourist spots.

    Fair director Ilaria Bonacossa was a smiling, tireless cynosure in the

  • Artist Maurizio Cattelan with Stefano Boeri, President Triennale di Milano and his wife Maddalena Bregani.
    diary April 17, 2019

    Just Dessert

    THESE DAYS, Milano Art Week lasts for about a month. By Monday, April 1—when Fondazione Adolfo Pini hosted the kickoff event for this year’s edition—my yesterdays had already been filled with dozens of openings. Indeed, the density of programs by the art fair Miart is pushing many institutions and galleries to advance their events in order to take better advantage of the wealth of excitement (and, simply, wealth) in the city.

    A very Milanese sense of discretion emerged at this year’s Art Week. A quiet Marco Tronchetti Provera was seen alongside Sheela Gowda at the presentations at Pirelli Hangar

  • Global Private Museum Network and Jean Paul Najar Foundation director Deborah Najar and collectors and founders of Magazzino Italian Art Giorgio Spanu, PSRR, and Nancy Olnick with collector and founder of Salsali Private Museum Ramin Salsali. Except where noted, all photos: Michela Moro.
    diary November 15, 2018

    Italian Feast

    FOR TWENTY-FIVE YEARS, Artissima has been a key focal point for Turin, exemplifying the web that connects at least five groups: artists, dealers, collectors, curators, and museums. The city’s institutions vigorously support this fair, and last year alone, with fifty-two thousand visitors, it generated 3.7 million euros. On the morning of November 1, collectors waited impatiently at the VIP entrance to be the first to enter the Oval Lingotto arena. It was a good sign for this edition of the fair, the second to be directed by Ilaria Bonacossa. This year, great attention was paid to contemporary

  • Ugo Rondinone, the radiant, 2017, bluestone and stainless steel, 12 5/8 x 5 x 2 1/4'.
    picks November 11, 2018

    Ugo Rondinone

    Malta’s culture remains significant in the Mediterranean region, and the republic will forever bask in its great artistic legacy. But while the archipelago may be known for its temples that date back to the Neolithic era, the city of Valletta, and Caravaggio’s The Beheading of Saint John the Baptist, painted in Malta in 1608, its contemporary art scene has still not yet gained its footing with an international audience. Now, with a lone stone statute, Ugo Rondinone has offered the country not only a fresh but an invigorating sight. He is the first artist to be involved with Malta International

  • Sol LeWitt, Wall Drawing #1104: All combinations of lines in four directions. Lines do not have to be drawn straight (with a ruler), 2003, black marker on mirror, dimensions variable.
    picks June 13, 2018

    Sol LeWitt

    This exhibition is a gymnasium for the mind. Titled “Between the Lines,” the show occupies every space across the venue’s two buildings, to provide an intense and, at times, brilliantly jarred portrait of Sol LeWitt. Considered one of the founders of Conceptualism, the artist was one of the first to theorize that the work is the idea, while its realization is secondary, inasmuch as it is already contained in the idea itself, thus sanctioning the primacy of idea over execution. His work is also great fun. The two- and three-dimensional forms here often feel impossible, and, while maintaining

  • Artist Jimmie Durham and curator Gabi Scardi. (All photos: Michela Moro)
    diary May 07, 2018

    Oh Milano!

    ART FAIRS MIGHT BE A BIT like that moment before death, when your entire life flashes before your eyes. During a span of only days, everyone seems to bump into everyone they’ve ever known since, well, forever. Certainly, this was the case at the Milan Art Fair, or MiArt, which opened on April 13 and ran through April 15. Despite the bad weather, I was out and about on a Monday, several days before the fair’s official opening, to honor the artist Jimmie Durham. He is a beloved presence at the Fondazione Adolfo Pini, a refurbished nineteenth-century apartment building, where his current exhibition,

  • View of “Gerasimos Floratos,” 2017.
    picks January 08, 2018

    Gerasimos Floratos

    Gerasimos Floratos, who was born in New York City in 1986 and grew up in an apartment overlooking Times Square, self-assuredly fills the gallery’s space with large-scale paintings and three sculptures, all made with bold and decisive hues, and all vaguely reminiscent of street art. The paintings hint at figuration without coalescing into a linear narrative. Their emotive bodies are alter egos for Floratos, who develops his own personal language and pursues an internal investigation of sorts through the canvases. His research is protean, the bodies he depicts are in transit, and his visual

  • Alis/Filliol, eud, 2017, polyurethane foam, wire mesh, fog machine, dimensions variable.
    picks October 10, 2017


    The dark, silent space is dense with fog. Visitors move about circumspectly, their eyes adjusting to the darkness. Suddenly, a large sculpture of indefinite shape emerges, which seems to move and vibrate within the gray material. Then, a second shape appears, vibrating obliquely like the first. The latter form has two heads, seeming to whisper to each other, while the former, as it grows perceptible, looks acephalous or perhaps decapitated, its head resting at its feet. Both representations, simultaneously human and monstrous, gradually reveal themselves, their threatening stances directed not

  • View of “Fausto Melotti and Thea Djordjadze,” 2017.
    picks August 14, 2017

    Fausto Melotti and Thea Djordjadze

    Fausto Melotti’s little theaters, some of his least known work, seem to represent instances when the artist felt most free in his practice. These miniature dioramas create safe spaces in which stories unfold, both lighthearted and profound, delimited by their architecture. Paesaggio Dimenticato (Forgotten Landscape), 1934, exists in dialogue with La Cattiveria (The Malice), 1978, as does Il diavolo che tenta gli intellettuali (The Devil That Tempts Intellectuals), 1939, with Il Gregge è fuggito (The Crowd Has Gone), 1984, forming extremely compelling mental exercises of sorts. They are constructed

  • Simon Fujiwara, Masks (Merkel A5-6.1), 2016, makeup on canvas, 89 x 49 1/2 x 2 1/2".
    picks July 13, 2017

    Simon Fujiwara

    Simon Fujiwara’s heaven is obviously clear and orderly. A labyrinth dominates the gallery, while background music lures viewers toward a secret chamber at the heart of the installation. As one traverses the space, lights are activated in recognition of bodies in motion. Passages within are punctuated by large paintings of Angela Merkel, a project titled “Masks (Merkel)” that Fujiwara has been working on since 2015. The series features sections of the chancellor’s face that the artist paints with the makeup products that Merkel actually uses. Working from a portrait of the political figure created

  • View of “Pae White: Demimondaine,” 2017.
    picks June 19, 2017

    Pae White

    The interstices that Pae White’s work occupies become monumental in this exhibition, where familiar objects warp, encouraging other associations. The show’s title declaims “Demimondaine,” but more than in just the nineteenth-century sense of women living at the fringes of affluent society, as participants without proper qualifications. This mondo di mezzo, or in-between world, is substantial in and of itself—as a choice, with a sidelong, insect-like gaze.

    In the gallery’s courtyard, visitors confront abstract marble sculptures: explosions of gigantic popcorn with a familiarity that dilutes any

  • View of “Paranormal: Tony Oursler vs Gustavo Rol,” 2017.
    picks January 05, 2017

    “Paranormal: Tony Oursler vs Gustavo Rol”

    Like the Pied Piper, Tony Oursler leads viewers through an exhibition composed not only of his sculptures and paintings, but also archival material dedicated to the paranormal from his over-15,000-item collection, as well as writings and paintings by artist and psychic Gustavo Rol. He gives form to his knowledge of paranormal worlds drawn both from his recent stay in Turin (a city full of esoterica and Rol’s home) and from his family history: Oursler’s grandfather, Charles Fulton Oursler, was close friends with both Harry Houdini and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

    In this exhibition, Rol is a key point