Enzo Cucchi. Fifty Years of Art Graphics at Spazio Officina, Chiasso

Installation view: Enzo Cucchi. Fifty Years of Art Graphics, Spazio Officina, Chiasso, 2017. Photo by Carlo Pedroli.

 

The exhibition devoted to Enzo Cucchi at the Centro Culturale Chiasso and the Mole Vanvitelliana in Ancona forms part of the strand of “contemporary graphics” presenting the work of artists who relate to the culture of the genius loci. The exhibition features graphic designs, sketches and drawings as well as an articulated selection of his books set in a broad time frame. For the first time, the exhibition will be centring on the theme of Cucchi’s graphic art alone, highlighting the great work of psychological research and self-exploration conducted on paper over fifty years’ incessant activity. It presents Enzo Cucchi’s graphic works from his early artistic period in the seventies and the more complex work of the eighties and nineties, culminating in 1996 with the decoration of the Church of Santa Maria degli Angeli designed by Mario Botta on Monte Tamaro. His works from the 2000s reveal a highly articulated creative path, rich in reconsiderations, research, documents and reflections. The exhibition is enriched with a cycle of new engravings in small format, previously unpublished and produced especially for this exhibition, where they can be compared to other etchings, lithographs and silkscreen prints in remarkably large formats. Altogether over 150 graphic works will be presented.

In his long career as an artist Enzo Cucchi has always shown a particular concern and passion for graphic designs and the book/catalogue as object. Traditionally, he designs the exhibition catalogue and follows it in its crafted production in a small print run, in the choice of materials, papers and the final print as a real memorandum that remains as a testament to the cultural message of the exhibition itself.

The exhibition, in presenting for the first time the fundamental phases of Cucchi’s graphic research over a broad time span of fifty years, brings out his creativity and the surprising treatments he adopts, such as the very large and the small. The formats follow inscrutable rules, faithful to the images they contain. Different printing methods often coexist. Handwritten characters and words alternate with the images of the heroes of the countryside of the Marche, dogs and cats, hills and houses concealed amid the folds of leporellos, in the corners of the pages and flaps. Enzo Cucchi himself imagines the backbone of the exhibition as consisting of artist’s books, object books, and graphic documents, with its ribs comprising the new series of great etchings, all made up of papers, inks, acids and stones. For Cucchi this is an anthological thematic opportunity to display all the beauty expressed in his varied printing techniques from the seventies to the present.

Enzo Cucchi, the most visionary of the artists of the Transavanguardia movement, claims that “if a work aims to be seen as new, it has to contain everything old that has already been produced, thought, suffered, digested and, in rejecting it, has to create itseòf from those ashes, yet which are as solid as a foundation.” So this is how  his graphic works are created, filled with echoes from his homeland and popular culture.

The exhibition was made possible by the availability of important loans from the many collections of private individuals, as well as the Museo della Svizzera italiana in Lugano, without which testimony of the complex phenomenon of Enzo Cucchi’s graphic production would have been partial. To all of them we wish to express our deep gratitude.

- Nicoletta Ossanna Cavadini (curator)

The exhibition has been curated by Alessandro Cucchi (son of the artist and curator of the Archivio di Enzo Cucchi) and Nicoletta Ossanna Cavadini (director of m.a.x museo and the Spazio Officina di Chiasso).

An exhibition catalogue will be published by NERO.

Installation view: Enzo Cucchi. Fifty Years of Art Graphics, Spazio Officina, Chiasso, 2017. Photo by Carlo Pedroli.

 

Installation view: Enzo Cucchi. Fifty Years of Art Graphics, Spazio Officina, Chiasso, 2017. Photo by Carlo Pedroli.

 

Installation view: Enzo Cucchi. Fifty Years of Art Graphics, Spazio Officina, Chiasso, 2017. Photo by Carlo Pedroli.

 

Installation view: Enzo Cucchi. Fifty Years of Art Graphics, Spazio Officina, Chiasso, 2017. Photo by Carlo Pedroli.

 

Installation view: Enzo Cucchi. Fifty Years of Art Graphics, Spazio Officina, Chiasso, 2017. Photo by Carlo Pedroli.

 

Installation view: Enzo Cucchi. Fifty Years of Art Graphics, Spazio Officina, Chiasso, 2017. Photo by Carlo Pedroli.

 

Installation view: Enzo Cucchi. Fifty Years of Art Graphics, Spazio Officina, Chiasso, 2017. Photo by Carlo Pedroli.

 

Installation view: Enzo Cucchi. Fifty Years of Art Graphics, Spazio Officina, Chiasso, 2017. Photo by Carlo Pedroli.

 

Installation view: Enzo Cucchi. Fifty Years of Art Graphics, Spazio Officina, Chiasso, 2017. Photo by Carlo Pedroli.

 

Installation view: Enzo Cucchi. Fifty Years of Art Graphics, Spazio Officina, Chiasso, 2017. Photo by Carlo Pedroli.

 

Spazio Officina, Chiassovia Dante Alighieri 4, Chiasso, Swizerland
Opening 10 June 2017, 6pm
11 June – 23 July 2017