Michelangelo Pistoletto is one of the most prominent living Italian artists and one of the most influential contemporary artists in Europe today. His exhibition “Preventive Peace” will be held at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Belgrade from May 10th to September 10th.

Foto credits: De Martino/Fotogramma / Zuma Press / Profimedia

The exhibition was announced at the residence of the Italian ambassador, where it was stated that it will be displayed on two floors of the Museum and aims to provide an overview of more than sixty years of practice by this Italian artist. This comprehensive anthological exhibition will showcase his entire body of work, including his seminal pieces: “Mirror Paintings,” “Venus of the Rags,” “Minus Objects,” “Loving Differences – an artistic movement for Mediterranean policy,” “Third Paradise,” and many other sculptures and installations, as well as photographs, videos, early actions in public spaces, and the latest paintings that consist of vivid QR codes that can be visually enjoyed as abstract art pieces, but can also be activated as stories in digital format.

Photo credits: Mucciaccia.com

In the realm of engaged artistic practices, the personality and work of Michelangelo Pistoletto hold a particularly prominent place, said the exhibition curator and director of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Marijana Kolarić, adding that he is one of the main protagonists of the Italian Arte Povera art movement. Arte Povera, translated as “Poor Art,” emerged in Italy in the 1960s and was characterized by the use of everyday materials, a rejection of traditional artistic conventions, and a focus on the relationship between art and society. Pistoletto’s role in this movement was instrumental, as he explored the intersection of art and life, advocating for social change and challenging the boundaries between art and the everyday.

Since he entered the art scene in the 1960s until today, Michelangelo Pistoletto is an artist whose practice is inseparably linked to society and social development, convincing us of the beauty of contrast, the respect for differences, and constantly teaching us to see the bigger picture beyond the material world. Activating art through socially engaged practices and connecting with everyday life is at the core of Pistoletto’s artistic endeavors. He uses art as a tool for responsible social transformation, Kolarić pointed out. She explained that the title of the exhibition, “Preventive Peace,” aims to pay homage to the artist while providing visitors with a discursive and mystical experience.

“The ‘Preventive Peace’ exhibition does not aspire to any pacifist rhetoric about peace, but it serves as a stage for alternative solutions and actions through which better social and personal relationships are achieved, reminding us of love and mutual understanding, as well as respect for all opposites and differences. Acting preventively in nurturing peace and promoting tolerance, as well as humane values, seems to be imperative in our time, but also one of the imperatives and main features of recent artistic practices and the historical work of Michelangelo Pistoletto,” noted the director of MSUB.